Monday, November 21, 2005

The daughter of אליעזר and יצחק

Rashi quotes the Medrash that אליעזר really wanted his daughter to marry יצחק. In fact, אליעזר was a great man. Chazal describe him as "מושל בתורת רבו", "דולה ומשקה מתורת רבו לאחרים", and yet his daughter cannot marry יצחק. Why not? Chazal don't say that his daughter was not appropriate for יצחק, and in fact, the fact that אליעזר wanted her to marry יצחק would seem to indicate that she was worthy. Chazal explain (quoted by Rashi) that Avraham told him:
בני ברוך ואתה ארור ואין ארור מדבק בברוך
My son is blessed and you are cursed (Eliezer was a descendent of Canaan who was cursed by Noach) and the cursed cannot marry(?) the blessed

אליעזר was a great man, he servedAvraham Avinu faithfully and learned all his Torah. His daughter did nothing wrong. And yet, his daughter is ארור and cannot marry Yitzchak.

We see here that the Torah's hashkafa is very different from the Western one. In the West, who your ancestors are is supposed to be irrelevant, every person is supposed to be judged on their own merits. However, we see from Eliezer's daughter, that this is not the Torah view. She may very well have been suitable to marry Yitzchak, yet she cannot marry Yitzchak because she is descended from a line that is ארור. We see the same idea by a ממזר. A ממזר did nothing wrong, he had no choice in the matter and yet, he and his descendents can never marry a regular Jewish man. Our Western upbringing screams, it's not fair? The answer is that the Torah has it's own value system which is very divergent from the western one.

This relates to the discussion that Chardal is having Casualties of legitimate war where some of the commenters were very offended by his stating of the Torah position that there is nothing wrong with killing civilians in war. There is no doubt that from the Western perspective of war, killing civilians is wrong, immoral, offensive, etc. However, the fact is that the Torah has a different perspective on this and from the Torah perspective killing civilians is not only allowed but required (see the Rambam in Hilchos Melachim Perek 6).

We who grow up in the West and participate in the culture need to take particluar care that we internalize the Torah position and not the Western one.

19 comments:

Anonymous said...

Instead of writing a whole new post, you could just link to the three or four exact same posts that you've already written on this topic.

bluke said...

You are right but I thought I made a new point regarding Eliezer and his daughter.

Anonymous said...

"This relates to the discussion that Chardal is having Casualties of legitimate war where some of the commenters were very offended by his stating of the Torah position that there is nothing wrong with killing civilians in war. There is no doubt that from the Western perspective of war, killing civilians is wrong, immoral, offensive, etc. However, the fact is that the Torah has a different perspective on this and from the Torah perspective killing civilians is not only allowed but required (see the Rambam in Hilchos Melachim Perek 6)."

As I've already pointed out to you in the thread in which you made this point at length, there is no connection with wars today, even wars of defense which you can quote people as calling milchemes mitzva. It's highly irresponsible to write this way.

When assassinations happen, when individuals walk into arab towns and let loose with guns...this happens b/c they live in an environment where rhetoric like yours is tolerated.

Every time you say something like this, I am reminded and reinforced in my conviction not to raise children in the current E"Y environment. Just so you know what effect your posts have. This is truly irresponsible stuff.

Anonymous said...

"You are right but I thought I made a new point regarding Eliezer and his daughter."

The first anonymous is a different poster.

The fact that you repeat this so often, and keep pointing to a rambam that doesn't apply bizman hazeh, and talk about "internalizing" it --- when the values people have are in accordance with halacha, and you would like them to internalize values that don't apply to their situation, as though they do - speaks to the extremism and violence to which you've allowed yourself to become accustomed. Make no mistake about it, anyone who unnecessarily kills civilians in war today is committing MURDER acc. to the torah.

Your preaching to the contrary is CRAZY and unbalanced.

Cosmic X said...

"Make no mistake about it, anyone who unnecessarily kills civilians in war today is committing MURDER acc. to the torah."


Please bring sources. Thanks.

bluke said...

You can make statements all you want that this is crazy, the bottom line is that you can't deny the Rambam, the Maharal, R' Yaakov Kamenetsky, RHS etc. Last I checked both R' Yaakov and RHS lived in America.

No one is saying that any inidividual should go out and kill people. What I am saying is that we should understand the Torah view on things.

Hayim said...

why does Lavan refer to Eliezer as "Brukh Hashem" ?

Anonymous said...

"You can make statements all you want that this is crazy, the bottom line is that you can't deny the Rambam, the Maharal, R' Yaakov Kamenetsky, RHS etc. Last I checked both R' Yaakov and RHS lived in America.

No one is saying that any inidividual should go out and kill people. What I am saying is that we should understand the Torah view on things."

NONE OF THEM say this halacha applies bzman hazeh. NOT ONE. RYKaminetsky said that self defense is a milchemes mitzva, not that this halacha applies, and no one reputable has ever said it does --- a point you conceded the last time this came up.

You just hide under "knowing what the torah says" as though knowing what the torah says in a situation that doesn't apply any longer is the same as writing as though the halacha still applies.

Anonymous said...

cosmic: Go look at the old thread, in which Bluke himself concedes that none of what he quotes applies b'zman hezeh.

Anonymous said...

"Last I checked both R' Yaakov and RHS lived in America."

Neither one has ever said that you can go kill civilians in war b'zman hazeh for no reason. YOU said that.

Anonymous said...

"No one is saying that any inidividual should go out and kill people. What I am saying is that we should understand the Torah view on things."

Irresponsible claptrap. "The torah view on things" is that killing civilians for no reason today, even in time of war, is murder. You don't make that clear. You act as though this rambam you point to has some bearing on contemporary life.

Anonymous said...

And you should understand, if you don't already, that when people like you fudge the distinctions, the result is that individuals WILL go out and murder civilians, and consider themselves to be in accordance with the torah view.

bluke said...

Neither one has ever said that you can go kill civilians in war b'zman hazeh for no reason. YOU said that.

I didn't say that either. What I did say is if civilians are killed we have nothing to be ashamed of and if we have a choice between endangering Jewish soldiers lives and civilians we should decide on favor of the Jewish soldiers.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

anonymous: What has gotten into you? What do you base your comments on -- "When assassinations happen, when individuals walk into arab towns and let loose with guns...this happens b/c they live in an environment where rhetoric like yours is tolerated."

How often do the above happen? The key above is "individuals" -- and so rare (Baruch Hashem) that it proves your comments are not the norm...nor based on any rhetoric.

Anonymous said...

"I didn't say that either. What I did say is if civilians are killed we have nothing to be ashamed of and if we have a choice between endangering Jewish soldiers lives and civilians we should decide on favor of the Jewish soldiers."

But that's not the halacha you quoted and you quoted it as though it was the "torah view" of how to behave *today*

"How often do the above happen?"

once is too often, and it's been more than once.

"The key above is "individuals" -- and so rare (Baruch Hashem) that it proves your comments are not the norm...nor based on any rhetoric."

Of course they are based on rhetoric. They invoke this rhetoric when it does happen.

Anonymous said...

"'You can make statements all you want that this is crazy, the bottom line is that you can't deny the Rambam, the Maharal, R' Yaakov Kamenetsky, RHS etc. Last I checked both R' Yaakov and RHS lived in America.

No one is saying that any inidividual should go out and kill people. What I am saying is that we should understand the Torah view on things."

and this is how you represent the "Torah view" on things:

"There is no doubt that from the Western perspective of war, killing civilians is wrong, immoral, offensive, etc. However, the fact is that the Torah has a different perspective on this and from the Torah perspective killing civilians is not only allowed but required (see the Rambam in Hilchos Melachim Perek 6).

We who grow up in the West and participate in the culture need to take particluar care that we internalize the Torah position and not the Western one."

Give me a break. You purposefully make it sound as though that long list of sources approve of killing civilians purposefully - in the rambam's case, required - and you make NO effort to distinguish between when the halacha applied and today.

Jameel @ The Muqata said...

Anonymous: I see nothing wrong with behaving in the manner you stated: "I didn't say that either. What I did say is if civilians are killed we have nothing to be ashamed of and if we have a choice between endangering Jewish soldiers lives and civilians we should decide on favor of the Jewish soldiers."

We are living in a war zone. If you use CNN to determine your morality, than I guess its only logical you arrived at the conclusion you did.

Anonymous said...

"Anonymous: I see nothing wrong with behaving in the manner you stated"

That's not what I stated. That's what Bluke stated is all he said - and I pointed out that the clear implication of his post is to justify much more than that as the "Torah view."

Anonymous said...

This:

"However, the fact is that the Torah has a different perspective on this and from the Torah perspective killing civilians is not only allowed but required (see the Rambam in Hilchos Melachim Perek 6)."

Just doesn't square with:

"if we have a choice between endangering Jewish soldiers lives and civilians we should decide on favor of the Jewish soldiers."

See the difference?