Tuesday, November 30, 2010

The Promse; 150-168

In the novel right now Reuven is talking with his Rabbinical teacher. His teacher is concerned that Reuven is living two lives. Reuven's father's way of studying Torah involves changing certain words to make the meaning more clear. Reuven tends to agree with this because the commentaries that Jewish students study and the Rabbi's that wrote them also have changed words to identify the meaning more clearly. These Rabbi's who wrote the commentaries are seen as the best there is; they are not to be questioned but rather idolized. The teacher, though, is convinced there should be no rewriting of any kind, including commentaries. Reuven does not study Torah in this fashion while at the Yeshiva (Jewish School)because he knows it is not well received there. And so there comes a point when the teacher reads one of Reuven's father's books and discovers that Reuven is studying two different ways and that the teacher is unwilling to advance Reuven as a Rabbi unless he is sure that Reuven believes what the teacher believes.

So Reuven stands at a crossroad.

Sometimes we believe things and we take those beliefs with us into different groups of people and different situations. We are taught to stand on our beliefs no matter what and we are also taught that we should allow others to speak; to hear their side of the story, to not be closed minded. I can't help but think about the fine line that exists there in that place.

1 comment:

  1. to me...standing on your beliefs starts with speaking up...but i believe that God gave us 2 ears and 1 mouth for a reason. :-) to listen twice as much as we talk. good post.