Reading Fire
Parashat V'Zot HaBerakhah

Dena Weiss

One of the most compelling images for the Torah emerges from the blessing offered by Moshe in this week’s reading, containing the word "fiery." Rashi explains that the word “fiery” is not merely adjectival and metaphorical, but rather it is a substantive claim that the Torah was originally composed of fire: Although the Torah that Moshe received was written on two stone tablets and the sifrei torah that we write are parchment and ink, the original Torah which God had in heaven was fire on fire. This beautiful image is complex and highly instructive. On the one hand, it opens us to the possibility of creative and personal interpretations of the Torah and on the other hand, cautions us against taking too many liberties with our most sacred text.

 

Reading Fire
(audio/mpeg, 17.06MB)

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