These and Those

Musings from Students of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem

A trip back in time

Posted on November 3, 2011 by Suzi

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some of the groupseen at the meetingA couple nights ago, I accompanied Rabbi Barry Leff on his monthly visit to the Emmaus monastery near Latrun for Torah study. The monastery sits at the site of a Byzantine church. Couldn’t see much at night, so I hope to go back in the daytime to see the ancient ruins. It was fascinating to take part in the study session with a rabbi, a priest, a group of nuns and a few lay people (sounds like the start of a bad joke, but it was no joke. These people are spiritual, dedicated and quite knowledgeable about Scripture, both theirs and ours. I wish I knew as much as they do). The evening began with a chant in Hebrew and Latin, and ended the same way. In between was a lively discussion of Lech Lecha, this week’s Torah portion. Much of the conversation centered on Sodom and Gemorrah–what were they? Why were they considered wicked? What were their wicked ways? And also, how did Lot and Abraham lift up their eyes, what were they seeing? Rabbi Leff is active in Rabbis for Human Rights, something else I hope to investigate. In my mind, getting people talking to one another is a good start toward what I hope will be eventual and eternal peace.