JBD – Jews of the Melbourne CBD is now on LinkedIn. Follow us here.
Shabbat starts on Friday at 5.16pm and ends on Saturday at 6.17pm. The weekly Torah portion is Eikev.
Mincha continues at Ainsworth Property – 7/459 Collins St (North Tower), at 1.00pm and we use the WhatsApp group to confirm numbers..
The weekly lunch & shiur continues on Wed at 1.10pm at A-P 7/459 Collins – and via zoom, followed by mincha. Current topic: residential landlord & tenant obligations Details here and on the WhatsApp group.
Thought of the Week with thanks to Gaby Silver.
The name of this week’s Torah reading translates literally as ”heel”. The commentator Rashi famously infers this as an exhortation to be mindful of seemingly “unimportant” mitzvot that one may metaphorically tread on with our heels.
As Moshe Rabbeinu continues his account of 40 years of Israelite virtues and failures, it’s hard not to feel somewhat discouraged. I mean, if the generation that witnessed the Egyptian plagues, the splitting of the sea and the awesome giving of the Torah on Mt Sinai managed to mess up so royally and regularly, what chance do we have? If the people who had existed in a supernatural cocoon of G-dliness for four decades could nevertheless bite the Divine hand that fed them, surely our generation has no hope of fulfilling G-d’s vision for the world?Our modern lives are steeped in coarse materialism that desensitises us to G-dliness. Bereft of the leadership of the stature and greatness that our people were privileged with until relatively recently, living as a Jew in the world can feel like sailing turbulent seas on a ship without a rudder. Truly, we can be compared to the heel of the Jewish line of continuity.
However, it is precisely in these times that are referred to as Ikvesa d’Meshicha – the heels of Moshiach. Like us, the heel is rough and lacks sensitivity due to its constant, harsh contact with physicality. That also makes it – and us – tough, strong and capable of bearing great weight to propel the body forward.
It is precisely these qualities that are required to usher in the age in which we will once again bask in the warm embrace of G-d’s manifest presence. As we leave Tisha B’Av behind and turn our thoughts towards the months of Elul and Tishrei, our renewed commitment to fulfilling even the commandments that are trodden on under heel, will surely mean that the “Heel Generation” will be the ones to bring Moshiach and enjoy a long overdue spiritual pedicure!