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Monday, November 7, 2022

Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Jewish History

By order of the Pope, the Talmud was burned in Venice on the 13th and 14th of MarCheshvan, 1553 (Minchah Belulah, Deuteronomy 33:2). The reason given was that the Talmud contained statements heretical to the Christian faith. Venice boasted many famous Hebrew printing houses, including that of Daniel Bomberg, an Italian gentile who published the Talmud there during the years 1519–1523.

Link: What Is the Talmud?

Daily Thought

When Torah first entered our universe through its portal on Mount Sinai, its first word was an Egyptian word: “Anochi,” meaning “I.”

And indeed, when the angels claimed that Torah belonged in their ethereal domain, Moses demanded of them, “Did you descend to Egypt? Did you set your bloody hands to form a brick from straw and clay? Have you felt the sting of a taskmaster’s whip upon your sunburnt back? How could you have Torah?”

For to have Torah is to have G-d raw.

Not G‑d as an idea for the mind to grasp, not G-d as a transcendent spirit for the soul to find. No, G-d as He is beyond any description or name. As He is simply “I.”

And where will you grasp that I?

In the Egypt of life into which you were cast from birth. In your daily struggle to preserve your integrity, to save your soul from drowning in a world that no one can explain, where G-d appears at times entirely absent.

He is there. His “I” is there. And you will find Him there, as you bring Torah into that place.

“There is one short chapter of only a few words,” teaches the Talmud, “and upon it hangs the entire Torah.”

“In all your ways, know Him.”

In your ways, in your personal Egypt. Know Him—He who is beyond all knowing.

Likutei Sichot vol. 3, Yitro.