Tuesday, January 18, 2011

The double portion of Mana on Friday. From last Saturday's Bible Reading. (Exodus 13:16-17:16)

I always look at the bible reading that is read for the week. It is interesting (Exodus 16:22-25) that on Friday each took two portions rather then one. Furthermore it didn't stink the next day as normally if you didn't eat it that day it would stink the next day.

This photo was from

The whole process is supernatural getting this mana in the desert but also that on Fridays the second portion would not stink from letting it sit for a day which normally this would happen.

As God wanted the Sabbath to be a day of rest and not to focus on work on this day and gather it like they do every other day.

It does show that for 6 days God does want you to work and not just expect a handout but God gave a second portion so they wouldn't have to work the day of Shabbath for basic needs if we only got one portion on Friday.

So I was thinking about my own situation. Busy season is coming up for me tax season and you should work six days when work is at a maximum. My issue is isn't because of God but more because of man that most men during busy season will work on Saturday and not Sunday because they consider the day to take it easy to be Sunday. And people of my own faith haven't wanted to hire me.

If I don't work on Saturday I end up having two days I don't work which I need the extra money and I am at least taking one day for not working which I would prefer to be Shabbos but due to living in a country where Sunday is more the day to rest it is very hard without ending up with 2 days of not working.

Regardless I WOULD NOT WORK 7 days.

This whole issue is interesting that God tries to help us that WE WILL NOT NEED TO WORK ON SATURDAY WHICH TO GET FOOD FOR YOURSELF IS A LEGIT REASON AND GOD PREVENTING THE JEWISH PEOPLE FROM NEEDING TO DO THIS. Which begs the question should the Rabbi's be more strict in when we should disobey Shabbos. In the exile due to possibly losing two days of income it seems sometimes they made a lot of rules that would have they been different if we were in a society where our Shabbos was the same as the nations day of rest which wasn't the case in exile when our culture was the minority.

Just some thoughts? If anyone has things to say on this I would love to hear from you. Should we relook how we keep shabbos and some of the rules of when you can violate the shabbos since clearly God does try to create a situation where we shouldn't need to work on shabbos for basic needs? As we are quick to make certain lenient rulings in some professions which cause people to work 7 DAYS A WEEK. Or the reverse. Certain things really aren't work if you think about it although they may have been back then. It was funny I was reading a post about e-books and the shabbos and what happens if e-books become the norm which certainly having a lot of book in the home is easy if you are more well to do and have a lot of space.

The other issue is the laws of Shabbos are based on the various work in the mishkan (due to the position of them in the written torah next to each other after it talks about shabbos it mentions the mishkan as the torah does not define what work is) so the question becomes well if the mishkan was rebuilt how would we do the work in the mishkan using technology that didn't exist then.

Any thoughts on this as when I read the torah portion I thought about my own situation and here God helped that the Jewish people would not have to work 7 days just to collect food for themselves. Of course I live in a country where most of the people use Sunday as the day of rest and being that at this point I work for others it is difficult for me although I do realize Saturday is the true day of rest but the country I live in considers that day Sunday and I am obviously affected by the society around me being in exile.


SouthernBelle Rivky said...

First off, that is some ugly challah dough pics. You want to eat that??? Just kidding, mine look sort of funky too if I'm not using a mold (hahaha--that's my secret no one else does this since I can’t braid anything :) My guess is that it is work in progress, it is going to get rolled out and braided or turned into a pull apart.

I think Rabbis, particularly Ashkenaz, have become a lot more stringent particularly in big metro areas where there's enough people to get away with it. The reason why I point out Ashkenaz specifically is that all Sephardim, religious or not, go to the same shul which is Orthodox. There isn't reform or conservative, those that don't keep kosher or observe Shabbat still go to Orthodox shul and it's all good. Try that one at a normal Ashkenaz, non-outreach environment...So it's not like the rules change, just that there's awareness of real life and to do the best one can under the circumstances. Then again, moving to Israel will largely eliminate the issue, right?

As you mentioned, certain professions do get more leniency with working on Shabbos. It is known that Congressman Lieberman was granted leeway when Congress is in session as only he could be there to vote, he couldn't designate someone else. And take the 'average' medical doctor who has also been a lot of exemption even if it might not be warranted. If someone was a high end specialist and there was an emergency or a doctor shortage, there's no question for them to break shabbos. Or even anything resembling a potential emergency. But for an 'average' doctor or say one that is just starting out, their skills aren't necessarily any better than another similar doctor. Yet, medical doctors as a profession tend to have a free pass to be on call, work at a hospital on shabbos when probably a lot of times they aren't in an emergency situation and their services could have been handled by another doctor. Just like when doctors go on vacation or conferences or otherwise not available, they have another dr handle their patients.

But what about jobs like police, fire people, nurses, paramedics, armed services--they don't get free pass to work on Shabbos unless there was an active emergency even though they could also be doing similar potentially lifesaving work? People in other professions outside of prestigious careers in medicine would be expected not to work as there are plenty of other people to do that work over Shabbos.

Actually the opinion of the local rav of where I'm from regarding doctors is along these lines. Unless they were specialists doing something unique (i.e. a trauma doctor working in ER, which there is a shortage of in many areas) and therefore had a legit reason to be on call, it was the rav's opinion that ordinary doctors should not be on call over Shabbos. There were other just as qualified doctors in the area that could be used to handle patient issues over Shabbos, just like the same doctors do when on vacation. It did not sit well with the doctors who wanted to work on Saturday. It didn't change anyone's practice since there are plenty of well-known opinions to choose from.

As far as the nature ‘work’ that’s a different issue altogether….part 2 might come.

SouthernBelle Rivky said...

Oh wanted to add, it was sooo sweet to get email from you today!!!! :)

SouthernBelle Rivky said...

Happy Tu B'Shevat!!!!

OK, so it largely overlooked minor holiday. But for obvious reasons, I like it!

Hope Mr. Adam does a post :)

Analytical Adam said...

Happy Tu' Bishvat. OK. I did a post. Other then maybe planting something (if the weather is appropriate) I don't really see the reason to celebrate. Unless they had some special of women (which is possible) when I went to day school we got some raisins and this was the extent of it and I really don't see what there is to celebrate. Celebrate a good crop but just because you are starting a new planting year is something to take note of and act accordingly but nothing to celebrate.

Analytical Adam said...

Anyway back to the topic at hand here. Thanks for commenting and on the issue you mentioned with Doctors I mostly agree that I know cases where the Doctor is working 7 days a week is never home for shabbos and I really don't think it has to do with saving lives. If God rests one day then us people should and that includes Doctors. If it really is urgent and for life it is one thing but in most cases as you said I don't think it is.

In terms of Ashkanazi vs. Sephardi many Ashkanazim seem to think Sephardim have no issues and to be honest I don't think that is true. Ashkanazism are aware of their own problems and like to think idealy of Sephardim which if they really were part of they would see they have a lot of problems and corruption as well.

Analytical Adam said...

That is interesting you have a Rabbi that you are telling me has issues with being lenient on Doctors and it is funny you compare that to police which you say they are not so quick to think it is ok all the time.

The bigger problem is this whole idea of a person having an issue with Shabbos that is legit and going to the Rabbi of the shul you are a member in clearly the Rabbi has a conflict of interest. He isn't going to want to tell you know and/or if he doesn't like you he will tell you no and will try to use them at some point to claim you are not religious to allow something bad to be done.

IMO, issues people have with Shabbos should actually be discussed by more then one Rabbi. To go to your pulpit Rabbi is tough for the Rabbit to objective as being a. just one man and b. you are a person that pays dues to his synagogue

When you have people just not keep Shabbos hiding behind an opinion (for example that is lenient on Doctors) that is not a good thing as you are not trying to think about that the law isn't important if you could just violate it and work 7 days a wekk for the most part and rarely take a break.

And for any decision to be made by one man is just absurd.

SouthernBelle Rivky said...

Thank you Mr. Adam!!! Your Torah and holiday posts are the best-est I think! I'm so happy!!!!

Oh you know I like to grow stuff so you know why I Tu B'Shevat. I have lots of yard work to do next week when I go back. No manicure for me until after I'm done (gasp). Lots of frost causing damage.

A friend and I had a bunch of fruit for lunch to celebrate, that's all, but I often have fruit and a protein shake for lunch a lot of the time anyways. I did have starfruit that came all the way from *my* tree. No seder or anything fancy. Probably will also have extra fruit for shabbos since we have leftovers too. Tried to get some kind of fancy fruit for fun but didn't have anything exotic like one of these...

Your post was fun though. Box of raisins!?! I have to ask what did you get for Rosh Chodesh treats???

SouthernBelle Rivky said...

Have a good shabbos Mr. Adam!!!!

My reason for bringing up first responders in comparing with dr's is that if the EMT or fireman isn't able to get to someone or get there fast enough, there won't a need for the doctor to be at the hospital :( . That's where I see the lenient position falters for just blanket exempting drs yet be strict for everyone else. It's not consistent. Doctors are more prestigious and prestige often carries lots of weight at a shul. Although it shouldn't, but that's the reality, so in a sense doctors are getting special treatment.

You really want to venture into the nature of 'work'?? This arguement is specialty of formerly reform!

Analytical Adam said...

Well thanks, Southern Belle. Yes I do agree that the leniency regarding doctors likely has to do with it being more prestigious.

I don't know if I agree it is specifically an Ashkanazi issue though is the most well known Doctor is the Rambam who is Sephardi.

Southern Belle wrote:>You really want to venture into the nature of 'work'?? This arguement is specialty of formerly reform!

Let us that is true for argument sake. So does that mean any thought they have is automatically wrong.

I know Orthodox Rabbi's hate all other religions (including other branches of Judaism) as they are competition. They have said things that are untrue and slander of conservative and reform which there is legit criticism but some of what has been said is slander and I have found out not true.

They don't care bout those who are unaffiliated which is a much bigger problem and the rules end up only being for those who are doing well for the most part. Especially when you are in a situation where you are a minority and can't just gather as Jews so easily as would be the case if you were the majority culture as is the case in Israel.

Analytical Adam said...

Clearly the purpose of Shabbos is to not be involved in work you do during the week to sustain oneself. Which God performed this miracle so not to create this situation to be forced to collect Mana on the Shabbath.

We define work as items that were done in the Mishkan. I do think it is relevant in this take of technology that certain things that at one point were work wouldn't be considered work today.

Sometimes I found this group that didn't believe in the oral torah at all strange as they didn't want to light a fire and let it burn on Shabbos which to let it burn is not doing work. Sometimes I wonder if they were created a strawman (since the bigger problem are those who only believe in the oral torah but not the written and think it is toilet paper) as they had other issues that was the real problem and not this that they didn't believe at all in the oral torah because clearly parts of the torah need some discussion and how you define "work" since the written torah doesn't do so. If shabbos it is not about this then (and you claim this is a reform concept which maybe in this case they are right) it is a fraud.

If it is just not using electricity but reading books about your profession and being like the Amish for a day it is not keeping Shabbos IMO.

SouthernBelle Rivky said...

Shavua tov Mr. Adam!!! Hope you had a good Shabbat.

You know I use to be formerly reform so I was poking fun at that. Since everyone else does while wondering if we horribly bad influences did enough teshuva for the bad bad ways. Since we all know that anyone not frum is a nympho drug addict. Not just reform people, OTD too. I learned that from many frum ravs, so must be truth. That's the way it is in the real world even if they never been in it. Well, most of them time anyone not frum is probably really goyim anyways, so best to be very wary. Or maybe they are really are animals. That would explain a lot of my weirdness; I'm not really a human after all!

Didn't want to expose your pure and holy neshama to the so called harry dark side ideas of reform questioning. That wouldn’t be proper to spread such smultz your way. But you already covered the main point more succinctly than I could. I'm impressed. You’re too cool!

So, I'm going to be nosy about you because it is fun and you are usually up for the challenge. One could make similar argument with kashrut as you did with shabbat. So given that the bulk of kashrut is also largely rabbinic, why do you keep kosher?

Analytical Adam said...

I know you are being in the first part of the post but anyway actually the laws of Kosher are mostly NOT RABBINIC. The book of Leviticus talks about all the kosher and non-kosher animals. The only area that is Rabbinic is the meat and milk thing which is based on not eating the kid with the mothers milk applying to a goat which we apply to other animals. Also, this would only exist if the meat and milk are from the same animal. Which it is cruel to eat the mothers milk with the kid. But other then that in general there is nothing wrong with this although today you don't know the source of the milk or the animal although actually all milk are from cows so actually it is overblown.

But other then this most everything else about kosher is biblical. Including contact with unkosher animals effecting silverware and the like.

Analytical Adam said...

Regarding Shabbos which I will discuss when we got to the parsha and I did learn that the laws of Shabbos and what constitutes "work" is based on the mishkan and this is because in Exodus 35 after the passage about not kindling a fire on the sabbath in (35:3) so why anyone would think that means you should sit in the dark is beyond me as they claim zikukim that didn't believe in the oral torah had this view.

Exodus 35:4 starts discussing all the work in the mishkan which all of it seems to be skilled labor.

And among Orthodox if a light is on and then need to go to sleep they will turn it off. When you define work as the slightest activity that doesn't require any real work (which the Mishkan did) I have started to question it. Clearly the sprit of the law is not to focus on your weekday activities and not create like you do during the week. The laws of work which aren't defined other then not kindling a fire is based on the mishkan according to the talmud based on the position of these biblical passages which makes sense. How it is been interpreted though I have started to question it as I think work is some form of skilled labor.

Also some of the Rabbi's who interpreted these laws themselves didn't really work creating a product of a service. And again just focusing on reading text without any experience in the trenches and a man NOT WORKING in a decent way will lead to him distorting the torah. You would agree there?

Analytical Adam said...

I meant to say Sidukim as I spelled it wrong. I don't know how to say in english. I think it is pharacies which didn't believe at all in the oral torah. Although as I said why then they would sit in the dark makes no sense since the written torah says not to KINDLE a fire.

Which I guess turning on a light is like kindling a fire.

SouthernBelle Rivky said...

The Karaites that do not believe in oral Torah which they are still around although very small group now. Tzedukim aka Sadduccees which around the time of the Second Temple were the more upper class (priestly families, aristocrats) were believed to be Karaites or close. So they don't think one should light a fire prior to shabbas and derive benefit (i.e. light or heat) over shabbos. So they won't eat hot food for Shabbas lunch since the heat source was set up before shabbas and one is benefitting from that work done before. I learned it was a custom today to specifically have something hot for lunch, even it is is just a cup of tea, so that no one thinks you've a Karaite today. That's silly.

If you have been reading about Pharisees and thinking they were strict, you likely were reading in context of Christianity, which you have posted about before. Pharisees were contemporaries of Sadduccees but unlike them believe in written and oral torah and were more 'regular' folks. They would be largely forgetton about except to historians. But they are famous because the Christian Testament has a lot of back and forth with them in a very negative manner between them and the Chistian leader who of course saves the day in that religion. Some of the early apostales they believe were formerly Pharisee and possibly the Christian leader himself too. Ironically in the Christain context, Pharisees were considered to be the more strict, actually in the same history and geography, it would have been Sadducees.

The stuff you learn growing up in the middle of nowhere. hahaha

SouthernBelle Rivky said...

Oh, wanted to clarify, I don't know if you were missing a word or I learned differently. I was taught that if a light is on in your room then you are stuck all shabbas and can't turn it off to sleep. One could cover it, but that might be dangerous. Ditto if one forget to turn off oven or one's kitchen appliance that's on looks like it is not working well (i.e. making sparks, smoking, etc). Either suffer or go find a non-Jew and play the hint game which never works well with me.

Anyways changing perspective
Kosher stuff I think is rabbinic:
Majority of meat and milk stuff, having everything separate as you already pointed out. But isn't that the bulk of practical kashrut and kitchen issues?

Other stuff I think is rabbinic and not biblical, everything involving hekhsherim, a bunch of the laws of shechita (although the concept is biblical), pas yisrael, gevinat aku'm, some issues with bishul aku'm, and gebrochts during Passover. I could probably come up with more if I thought about it, but you get the idea.

Analytical Adam said...

In your first paragraph that is correct. If you leave a light on you have to leave it all shaboos. However, if it really is bothering someone most people will shut it off. That is what I have seen. The goy thing is just obnoxious IMO. In fact I think the torah wants us to include our servants and other on shabbos and not have them not to work as well rather then using them to turn on a ball game a Shabbos which happened with my Grandfather.

Analytical Adam said...

In terms of your second paragraph in my own case Kosher has been more about not eating certain animals and fish which clearly is biblical. The meat and milk of a cow I guess is Rabbinic as biblically it would only apply to a goat's milk with it's kid. In terms of other food I don't see what the point is as you are never going to have the milk of a chicken or turkey. If the Rabbi's can ask question in the talmud I don't see why I can't ask questions that they didn't think of.

Analytical Adam said...

I was responding to your second comment. In regards to your first comment I actually read parts of the new Testiment and I know they talk about the Saduccies. It really was the Karaites. The issue with that is it says clearly in 35:3 you shall not kindle a fire in any of your dwellings. So why anyone would think this mean you can't have it set before me is clearly just a chumrah and not following the writeen torah.
Sometimes I think they were other issues with the Karaites (and maybe legit) as at least here the written torah clearly states not lighting a fire. Yet they pretend this was the problem (they didn't believe in the oral torah) because to them not following their belief's as a Rabbinic group means you don't believe in the oral torah.

Growing up I never heard about people who seem to believe in the oral torah but not the written torah which seems to be a big issue as many people think that Rabbi's can say something in contradiction to the written torah and that is fine. It is one think to say not everything is literal but it is another to say that the written torah is wrong and it means the opposite of what is says.

Analytical Adam said...

I also wanted to say I admit I am not perfect in my own shabbos observance at this point in a number of ways and I live in an apartment where the people below me play annoying music on friday night and Shabbos sometimes and being in the situation I am in am not perfect in my observance.

SouthernBelle Rivky said...

Wow, you were on a roll!!! You are so helpful as usual and brutally honest.

I found this website on Karaites, you might find interesting as well. Couldn't find a more detailed answer to the kindling fire before shabbat issue, that part wasn't covered yet.

Analytical Adam said...

Thanks. I found this site very interesting and the countries they existed in were Egypt, and Turkey.

Of course I was taught that they no longer existence which isn't true.

Some of their criticism of Rabbinic Judaism are good points and this claim that they take everything literally is not true and they say they don't reject everything the Talmud and Rabbi's say out of hand just that they don't think everything they said is correct which I would agree with that.

In regards to this issue of Shabbos I was reading that the issue is they translate the hebrew word differently meaning I think to put out a fire and the fire is still going out on Shabbos if you light it beforehand. I still would disagree as per this post I think to do it before Shabbos is fine just as God gave us extra mana for the Sabbath from this I don't see why starting a fire before shabbos and continuing on shabbos should be a problem. Today they use florescent lights. So in that respect maybe I will email this group on this.

All the groups sadly sometimes take a position just to be contrary sad to say. I think the reason women light candles is just to say we don't agree with the Kararites view which in this case I don't know if I do.

Although from reading this on the net there is a political element to this group becoming dominant (the babylonian Rabbi's) from what I can see. In Israel some are learning the Yerusalmi Talmud more which is completely ignored in many Rabbinic circles.

What upsets me the most though is this self anointed idea that we are always right and every one else is wrong.

In Israel the view of the Chief Rabbi the Sephardi is that they are considered Jews the Kararites and they can marry Rabbinic Jews and hopefully they will become "more mainstream" by this. I don't think I agree with all the Kararites views but I have real problems with many of the Rabbinic views and they aren't perfect either and should stop pretending they are and everyone else is beneath them. In Israel most people don't like the Orthodox and they don't hate religion just the behavior of some of the religious leaders which they pass on to their congregation.