Slavery in the Talmud:Shabbos 72

The Shikkerdovid is reading the novel Homegoing. It is a brutal, violent, and most heart rending description of the 18th century slave trade in the Gold Coast.    The descriptions are gruesome.  The novel shows how without an ethical code, humanity can collapse into violence and cruelty.

In the ancient world, slavery was a tragic reality. The Torah attempted to regulate it.  On page 72, there is almost a comical yet tragic discussion. What if a man has relations 5 times with a slave women who is married to another slave. (Shifcha Charufa).   The debate how many penances must the man bring.   Clearly, this is almost a silly case. However, the timing of this daf and reading the novel struck a chord in the SD.

Slavery was a reality. Evil is a reality. Lack of fairness, justice and arbitrary outcomes in life are a reality.  The Torah and the point of a Jewish existence is to balance the injustices with mercy and kindness.  The goal of Torah living is to recognize  that injustice takes place, or evil is present.  As Jews we need to fight evil with law and cruelty with mercy.

In these difficult times of corona, lets be known as the people who do the random acts of kindness, mercy and promote justice.

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2 Responses to Slavery in the Talmud:Shabbos 72

  1. Amen, Brother!

    Sent from my iPhone


  2. Joe Orlian says:


    That is some book to read at this time. What motivated you to read it?

    Have a great day.

    Joseph I. Orlian, Esq.

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