The Akeda Foundation
D’Rosh: Noah: Segment. (Gen.VI: 9-XI-32)
Haftorah Lessons from the Prophets: Isaiah (LIV-LV, 5).
Candle Lighting: 5:42 p.m.
Rosh Chodesh (New Month) Cheshvan: October 20-21, 2017; 30 Tishrei, 1 Cheshvan 5778
November 5, 2017- Eastern Standard Time Begins . Turn clocks back one hour…”Spring Forward (Daylight Savings Time), Fall Back” (Eastern Standard Time).
NOAH/ AKA/ “BEYOND THE SEA”/ “ SEA CRUISE”,
The Flood was the result of forty (40) days of rain in deluge form. Noah being the only righteous man (the original Righteous Brother) is told build an Ark (not Carnival Cruise ship), (tr.Hebrew. Teivah) and coat it with material that will let it float.
So the next time you hear Bobby Darin singing “Beyond the Sea” think Noah’s Ark.
…”Somewhere beyond the sea”… (Noah is thinking beyond the floods and water covering the earth).
…”She’s (G-d) watching for me”… (Noah’s Ark)
…” IF I COULD FLY LIKE THE BIRDS ON HIGH”…
…” THEN STRAIGHT TO HER (G-d’s) ARMS”…
…” I’D GO SAILING (UNCONDITIONAL LOVE PLEGED BY NOAH TO G-d).
…”Happy we’ll be beyond the sea”…
…” And never again I’ll go sailing”…
Noah pledges to G-d unwittingly that the Universe and Human Race will never have to be destroyed again because of moral shortcomings. It reinforces …”that we are all made in G-d’s image”… regardless of gender and gender identification issues. This concept is so important that it is part of a daily Morning Prayer known as “The Blessings of Shacharith” which starts the Service.
Or if your tastes are more upbeat check out Frankie Ford’s “Sea Cruise”:
…” SO BE MY GUEST YOU’VE GOT NOTHING TO LOSE
WON’T YOU LET ME TAKE YOU ON A SEA CRUISE”…
… “I GOT TO GET TO MOVIN’, BABY, I AIN’T LYIN’,
…”MY HEART IS BEATIN’RHYTHM AND IT’S RIGHT ON TIME”…
…”SO BE MY GUEST”…
The Ark’s passengers were two species of every animal and Noah’s family. Mount Ararat was the Ark’s resting place. Noah set out two sets of birds a Raven (must have been a Baltimore Raven to be exact) and Doves to see if the flood waters had subsided .It took about a year from the landing on Ararat for the land to dry. Noah and the passengers start civilization over.
G-d realizing that annihilation in this case may have been too strong, promises that won’t happen again.
NOW THE PRESSURE IS REALLY ON TO HAVE THINGS TURN OUT RIGHT. The Shoah-Holocaust- could have easily been an exception to this policy and would have resulted in the saving of modern day Jewry, Romas and their friends regardless of faith or belief system.
Since all the Parshiot (Segments) tie in to one another, there is the ten (10) generation summary from Noah to Abram (and Sarai) whom G-d converts to Judaism and renames him Abraham and his wife Sarai to Sarah. (Gen. XVII: 5-8:15).
Haftorah: Lesson From the Prophets: ISAIAH:
Isaiah is interesting in that it too is about redemption of the Israelites. All in exile will return will return. Never again will a flood cover the earth. Never again will his anger be directed at the Jewish people. Little did Isaiah know that his words would form the basis of one of the great Rock ‘n’ Roll songs of all time.
ISAIAH’S WORDS …”FOR THE MOUNTAINS MAY MOVE AND THE HILLS MIGHT COLLAPSE, BUT MY KINDNESS SHALL NOT DEPART FROM YOU, NEITHER SHALL THE COVENANT OF MY PEACE COLLAPSE” ….
THE ICONIC HIT “STAND BY ME” SUNG BY BEN E. KING AND COVERED BY CASSIUS CLAY (WHO LATER WANTED TO BE ADRESSED BY HIS MUSLIM NAME ALTHOUGH NEVER LEGALLYCHANGED TO MOHAMMED ALI), AFTER HE BEAT SONNY LISTON FOR THE HEAVYWIEGHT BOXING TITLE.
IN PART: …
”If the sky that we look upon
Should tumble and fall
All the mountains should crumble to the sea
I won’t cry
I won’t cry
No, I won’t shed a tear
Just as long as you stand, stand by me…
Whenever you’re in trouble won’t you stand by me”…
PAST IS PROLOGUE:” IN THE BEGINNING”
Bereisheit is the first Parsha in the first of the Five Books of Moses which we read last week. It had something for everybody. For example we had creation including that of man and woman took place in the first six days. (Gen.II:18-25).
G-d rested on the seventh (7th) day and gave us the Sabbath. (Gen I: 1-31; Gen II: 13).
Steven Spielberg used the same concept of a prequel for the cinematic Star Wars series as G-d did with Bereisheit in setting up the Five Books of Moses.
Then life gets interesting. Adam and Eve who started ‘au natural’ became the first to wear coverings over their bodies starting the clothing industry, (no doubt Chanel or Versace).We were introduced to a talking snake pre-empting both Balak’s donkey, Mr. Ed, everybody’s favorite talking horse, and of course Francis the talking mule.
But that could only mean one thing, trouble in paradise.
(Gen. III :1-19).Adam and Eve ate forbidden fruit from the ‘Tree of Knowledge’ Pre-empting ‘the Tree of Souls’ in Avatar. (Gen. II: 15-17).Then we have sibling rivalry between Cain and Abel resulting in one brother killing another in order to move up G-d’s acceptance ladder. (Gen.IV: 8-15). The Garden of Eden became off limits. Obviously it did not work. (Gen. II: 4-III.) …”There’s trouble in paradise”… Perfect lyrics from the 50’s iconic group The Crests hit”The Angels Lookin’ In”.
It was the original version of you can pick your friends but you can’t pick your relatives.
Noah as a Parsha is a paradox. On the one hand G-d begins to organize society with “The Seven Noachide Laws “(Gen. IX: 1-17) in order to bring civility and an appreciation of personal and property rights. Great in theory but it was a bust.
G-d got the idea if all the cultures, different as they are in one location
Communication would be a breeze. In fact it was so bad that the ‘Tower of Babel’ has earned standing for the proposition of non- understanding communications (gibberish). (Gen. XI: 1-9). And what’s new about that? Nothing. Today in local and world events ‘Babel ‘seems the norm rather than the exception.
Back to Noah (or if you prefer aka/Russell Crowe or Steve Carrell). Actually the paradox is huge. G-d creator of the world, all species of animal and human kind faces the realization that the Universe creation masterwork is a failure. Society is corrupt, selfish, and unattentive to standards governing civility and a lack of desire to work out these issues through communications. The ‘Tower of Babel’ was supposed to be the United Nations, League of Nations for its era. The expectations were never met.
Recognizing the master work was a failure, the ultimate prequel decision was made …”to blot out man”… (Gen. VI: 5-8, Gen VII: 4-7), and start again hoping things would be right this time. Imagine the dejection. What is interesting is the question comes up about who G-d talks to in those special moments, it is us.
So take a walk with me down memory lane when a young comedian entered the scene with an atomic bang.
The routine was G-d’s conversation with Noah to build an Ark, get his family, gather the species and get ready for a flood. If you said Bill Cosby you are correct. He was one of the feature acts at a Special Weekend at the University of Maryland, College Park, MD.
…” Noah, Noah to which he replied who wants to know”… “Who are you”? “The voice replied “G-d”…. to which Cosby replied”Yeah Right.”… “Why me?” “BECAUSE I SAID SO”…The conversation continued with G-d telling Noah what size boat he would need to build and saving the species and his family to start over… AND SO THE STORY GOES.
How can G-d do something so drastic? In the Morning prayers we open with ‘The Blessings of Shacharith’. This Morning Prayer specifically acknowledges that we are made in G-d’s image. It shows all of us make mistakes but that makes us special .The same would hold true for G-d because he has to destroy his beloved Creation, the Universe.
At least for now this also includes the Sabbath which could have been exempted but was not. Noah and his family get penalized with its loss. No day of rest. Or put another way, no rest for the weary.
Is this all bad? Hardly. We have the beginning of the ideas “that we are our Brother and Sisters keeper”. So from the mouth of an unfortunate murderer we have the central concept and policy statement as a community and individually to help others. It is this concept that serves as the centerpiece for the Mission of the AKEDA FOUNDATION.ORG which can be found on Facebook and the internet.
There is another concept which is as true in Biblical times as it is today. ”Drink Responsibly”. Noah’s nakedness from alcohol is corrected with covers placed by a son. It is another safeguard to ensure that one’s conduct and personal dignity stay on track. In modern legal parlance Voluntary intoxication will not have a reasonable basis to justify one’s conduct.
As we close this week’s Parsha, we trace the ancestry from Noah to Terach to Abram (later Abraham). (Gen.XI: 10-32).
The month of Cheshvan provides the basis for having a social conscience to ensure that we reach out to those who may need assistance, while maintaining their integrity and self –esteem. This is hardly ‘Mar Cheshvan’, but quite the opposite. It’s a celebration of the best of human kind.
Yes, that even G-d viewed as perfect is not accurate when it comes to this Parsha, Segment. We are ‘Our Brothers and Sisters Keepers”.
Shabbat Shalom/A Peaceful Sabbath/Shavuah Tov/A Good Week. Reb’Z/R’Z/Stu
"We are our brothers and sisters keepers".