Shabbat Parashat Ki Tavo Humble Origins

Dear Friends,

It is so easy to take our lives for granted. It is so easy to forget our humble origins. But, the Torah reminds us again and again that we are all descendants of slaves – that our ancestors experienced the bondage of Egypt and the bitter reality of oppression.

Our Torah portion includes a piece that is to be recited, word for word, upon bringing the first fruits of the Land to the Temple. That piece includes the declaration that our ancestors were slaves.

Remembering our humble origins, especially when we are no longer enslaved, is not optional. It is required. It is a prerequisite to maintaining a sensitivity for the weak elements in our society. Lest we forget….It is the basis upon which we can hope and expect to build a society which is just – a society in which kindness to the stranger, to the outsider, and to the oppressed is the norm, rather than the exception.

May we be blessed with memory of our humble origins, and with the gratitude that is generated by the wise use of our acquired freedom.

Shabbat Shalom!

Rabbi Gilah Dror