Torah.org Home Subscribe Services Support Us
 
Print Version

Email this article to a friend

Parshas Toldos

From the contrasting descriptions of Yaakov and Eisav at the beginning of the Parsha we can discern the appropriate characteristics we seek to develop in ourselves as Jews, the Bnei Yaakov. These characteristics include (i) striving to always improve ourselves, and (ii) emphasizing our inner selves (the neshomo) over the outer, physical trappings.

1. Eisav was born having mature physical characteristics (se'ar). The name Eisav means 'already finished', in the sense of not striving for more, or that everything is fine in its current state. Yaakov, on the other hand, means 'at the heel', indicating an awareness of needing to raise ourselves up and strive for improvement.

2. Eisav requests to eat 'min ha'adom ha'adom hazeh' (from 'this red stuff'), focusing on the superficial quality of the food (its color) as opposed to its substance (lentils). Eisav is described as an 'ish sadeh', a man of the field, an outdoorsman. Yaakov is described as a 'yoshev ohalim', one who sits at home, an indoorsman. Yaakov seeks to emphasize what is inside as opposed to what is outside, what is profound as opposed to what is superficial and what has substance as opposed to what is merely stylish.

[This is based upon a shiur of HoRav Zvi Berkowitz, Shlita.]


Gal Einai, Copyright 2006 by Gedalia Litke and Torah.org.


 






ARTICLES ON DEVARIM AND THE THREE WEEKS:

View Complete List

Born To Be Wise
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5766

Wise Rebuke
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5758

Look Deeper
Shlomo Katz - 5766

> Tooth and Nail
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5770

Appreciation
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5772

Golden Opportunities
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5772

ArtScroll

Kamtza and Bar-Kamtza
Rabbi Yisroel Ciner - 5758

It's Not What You Want - But How You Ask
Rabbi Eliyahu Hoffmann - 5759

Flight to Freedom
Rabbi Pinchas Avruch - 5763

Frumster - Orthodox Jewish Dating

The Purpose of the Fifth Book
Shlomo Katz - 5767

And So The Journey Continues
Rabbi Pinchas Winston - 5765

No Empty Matter
Rabbi Berel Wein - 5766

Looking for a Chavrusah?

Utilizing our Gifts Properly
Rabbi Yosef Kalatzky - 5764

Unite!
Rabbi Yaakov Menken - 5760

9th of Av: Reasons for Fasting - Part 1
Rabbi Yehudah Prero - 5758

Payment in Full
Rabbi Naftali Reich - 5766



Project Genesis

Torah.org Home


Torah Portion

Jewish Law

Ethics

Texts

Learn the Basics

Seasons

Features

TORAHAUDIO

Ask The Rabbi

Knowledge Base




Help

About Us

Contact Us



Free Book on Geulah!




Torah.org Home
Torah.org HomeCapalon.com Copyright Information