How one young, modern-orthodox woman relates to the weekly Torah portion — Parsha Lech Lecha
DENVER, COLORADO, UNITED STATES, October 26, 2020 /EINPresswire.com/ — Holding fast to one’s beliefs, even when you are alone in your convictions, is a virtue we can all model, according to this week’s edition of “Life’s Cholent,” the weekly series of short videos hosted on YouTube.
Although the Hebrew Bible is often referred to as the “Old Testament,” host Avital Chaya, a young, modern orthodox woman, looks to the five books of Moses as a guidebook to help us navigate life’s many opportunities and challenges.
Watch Avital’s video here: https://tinyurl.com/LC-LechLecha
The “Life’s Cholent” video series, now in its second year, is designed for anyone with a curiosity about Judaism but no formal Jewish education.
“Lech Lecha” is the third of the Torah’s 54 instructional chapters. The word “Torah” is literally translated from the Biblical Hebrew as “teacher.”
In “Lech Lecha,” Avital discovers an unexpected connection between salmon – which must swim upstream to reproduce – and the Jewish people.
Abraham, one of the Jewish people’s forefathers, is introduced in this week’s Torah portion. He is the world’s original monotheist, alone in his time for believing that there is only one god.
Abraham develops a close relationship with G-d, who puts him through a series of tests to determine the depths of his faith. (In keeping with Jewish custom, Avital Chaya and other observant Jews insert a hyphen rather than spelling out all three letters in His holy name.)
The first test comes when G-d instructs Abraham, “Go forth from your land and from your birthplace and from your father’s house, to the land that I will show you.”
“That’s all He says,” Avital Chaya comments.
“G-d doesn’t provide any details, such as where Abraham is supposed to end up, why he needs to relocate, or how long he will have to stay in this new land that G-d will show him,” she relays.
“On faith alone, Abraham must leave behind everything he knows, everything familiar, to travel to some unknown destination,” she shares in her video. “As we learn, Abraham follows these instructions unquestioningly.”
Just as salmon swim against the current, Avital continues, Abraham pushed back against everything he had learned from his father and society. The son of a man who made his living creating idols, Abraham – living in a world of polytheists – became the unique believer that there is only one god.
“Throughout our history, the Jewish people, too, have pushed back against the norms of those who surround us,” Avital says, in relating the lessons of “Lech Lecha” to our modern lives. “When the world moves one way, Jews – in keeping with the laws of Torah – frequently seem to be going in the complete opposite direction.”
Avital Chaya cites three examples of the ways Jewish people resist conforming to the ways of others:
“When many women wear micro skirts, with hemlines that barely cover their bottoms, observant Jewish women wear dresses or skirts that cover our knees. When young adults are out clubbing on Friday nights, observant Jews are at home with their families and friends celebrating Shabbos. While technology is a 24/7 companion for most people, observant Jews unplug one day a week.”
Being different is hard, Avital observes.
“If Abraham, who was utterly alone in his convictions, could make his way against the current, shouldn’t we, supported by other Jews, be able to forge our own upstream path as well?” she asks. “It is the path that, like salmon, we are destined to follow.”
Anyone who is curious about Judaism but needs help understanding its relevance to our lives today is encouraged to watch the weekly “Life’s Cholent” videos, available on YouTube, and follow Avital on Instagram.
Coming next week, Parsha Vayeira – The Impossible is Possible
[About The Name: Cholent is a traditional Jewish stew that dates back to ancient Jewish communities. Typically, the dish is made of meat, potatoes, barley, beans, and kishke (a paprika-spiced stuffing). However, throughout the centuries, when Jews suffered periods of famine, cholent would contain whatever ingredients they could find and combine.
Cholent, most often consumed during Saturday lunch, is prepared on Friday and cooked overnight to avoid transgressing the biblical commandment not to prepare food on the Sabbath. By making it ahead of time and letting the mixture simmer overnight, observant Jews can still enjoy a hot meal the next day.
"Life's Cholent" plays on the notion of cholent being a Jewish dish and a mix of many different ingredients. Similarly, the video series is a savory blend of Jewish topics that are relevant to our modern lives.]
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Source: EIN Presswire