Monday, 30 June 2014
just cry to God
for droughts - the shofar was sounded as an alarm along with praying and crying to God.
but for plagues of locusts, flies, mosquitoes, hornets, snakes and scorpians - just crying to God - no shofar.
but for the older single woman, even when mourning, she must always look attractive for a potential husband.
for the older single woman there is no pleasure or joy in grooming and beauty.
so R. Yohanan teaches that rain comes to the individual. the lonely, solitary individual.
R. Yohanan's story gets me every time. The man who lost his chavrutah - study partner/intimate friend - due to an argument. His partner died before they were reconciled and R. Yohanan went mad with grief and loss. The story on this page about the son is so poignant with R. Yohanan's longing to connect with his old friend. but the son speaks of Torah that he can derive from the verses himself, without need of anyone else. and so R. Yohanan teaches that rain comes for the sake of a worthy individual... A few years ago I had a study partner, stuff was said that should not have been said.... long story short - no one has died, or gone completely mad (although some days I do question my sanity...) and yet there is no reconciliation, nor chance of one. and this saddens me. and I miss my old friend. and from time-to-time during this draw yomi I come across something I want to discuss with them, hear their particular take on it, and then I remember I can't. and so whilst there are other people to learn with, I have also learnt not to depend on another, but to study on my own.
can only pray for things that are hidden and one thing at a time.
so, what gets released first - the rain or the baby?
that make the women vulnerable
this page discusses 3 cases of men who made unreasonable demands/bargains with God, whose consequence affected women. 2 of the cases, Eliezer setting up who will qualify to be the bride for Isaac, Saul marrying his daughter to whoever killed Goliath, these worked out well, but the last one - Jephath, vowing to sacrifice whatever greeted him on his return, not so good.
ta'anit means fast - and this section discusses the community fasts that are decreed in times of drought. it is part of the ritual of praying for rain, which begins around succot time. Ta'anit begins by discussing when these rain prayers should begin, at the beginning or end of succot festival. And describes there being a key to unlock the rain.
Since this mesechet is linked to succot I decided to do these drawings in blue pencil, to echo the blue biro drawings of mesechet succot.
Sunday, 29 June 2014
and the exiled earthly court that descends
after the destruction of the first temple the shechinah travelled 10 stages of exile before finally ascending to heaven
after the destruction of the second temple, the Sanhedrin, travelled 10 stages to the lowest point.