web analytics
July 1, 2015 / 14 Tammuz, 5775
At a Glance
Judaism
Sponsored Post


Home » Judaism » Parsha »

‘The Maid’s Sons’

Parsha-Perspectives-logo

Perhaps it may indeed seem as if those sons are not as important. But we know otherwise, for without the sons of the maids there is no Klal Yisroel. “All these are the tribes of Israel – twelve…[3]”

In our world everybody wants to be the best. But if everyone is going to become a Rosh Yeshiva or a Rebbe, there won’t be any yeshivos or chassidus. To be a leader one must have followers, and to be a follower one must be ready to accept that leadership.

This is a concept that makes it way into all facets of life.

In the field of education we have bred a generation that feels anything less than a straight ‘A’ report card is terrible. Young adults feel that their lives are ruined because of their grades before they even hit adolescence. Teens commit suicide because they realize they aren’t going to be the next iconic pop star or professional athlete, and they feel that without the glitz and glamour what’s life worth? And how many of us feel that if we can’t be the CEO or the boss we are a complete failure?

And in regards to Torah study and spiritual growth we are paralyzed by such feelings of inadequacy. Why should I even bother to learn my one meager page of Gemara? I’m never going to know the entire Talmud anyway. Why should I work on improving my mitzvah performance, what are my actions worth anyway?

Klal Yisroel is not only composed of Reuven the firstborn, Levi the Kohen, Yehuda the Melech, and Yosef the Viceroy. Without the sons of the maids – maids only in regards to their complete subjugation and humility – there is no Klal Yisroel. Not only are the sons of maids inextricable members of Klal Yisroel, but the actions which we deem to be analogous to ‘the sons of the maids’, i.e. our Torah study, efforts to concentrate in prayer, good deeds, efforts at spiritual growth, etc. are all vital components of our identities as well.

In psychology one of the most rudimentary debates is about nature vs nurture. Are we more programmed by the way we are created or are we more influenced by our surroundings and culture? We believe that G-d creates every person with the tools he needs, and then places him in his perfect environment to achieve his own level of greatness.

Yaakov gathers his sons individually and blesses each one by delineating his strengths and innate greatness. “Each man according to his blessing, he blessed them.” Every tribe possessed his own contribution to the nation, based on the inner greatness that G-d had already implanted with him. Yaakov’s blessing was that each tribe should be able to cultivate and develop that greatness.

The slogan of the United States army expresses this idea so eloquently: “Be all you can be.” We aren’t all destined to be the Gadol Hador, but each of us possesses the ability to become a gadol in our own way, if we appreciate the gadlus (greatness) that lies within us. One person’s greatness is as Yehuda or Yosef, while another person’s greatness is analogous to the roles of Asher and Naftali.


[1] Berachos 16b

[2] With the notable exceptions of Yissachor and Zevulen

[3] 49:28

About the Author: Rabbi Dani Staum, LMSW is the Rabbi of Kehillat New Hempstead, as well as Guidance Counselor and fifth grade Rebbe in ASHAR, and Principal at Mesivta Ohr Naftoli of New Windsor. He can be reached at stamtorah@gmail.com. Visit him on the web at www.stamtorah.info.


If you don't see your comment after publishing it, refresh the page.

Our comments section is intended for meaningful responses and debates in a civilized manner. We ask that you respect the fact that we are a religious Jewish website and avoid inappropriate language at all cost.

If you promote any foreign religions, gods or messiahs, lies about Israel, anti-Semitism, or advocate violence (except against terrorists), your permission to comment may be revoked.

No Responses to “‘The Maid’s Sons’”

Comments are closed.

Current Top Story
investing-in-gold_4548807_lrg
What Sanctions? Iran Receives 13 Tons of Gold From S. Africa
Latest Judaism Stories
Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis

To my dismay, I’ve seen that shidduch candidates with money become ALL desirable traits for marriage

800px-Gustav_Jaeger_Bileam_Engel

Bil’am’s character is complex and nuanced; neither purely good nor purely evil.

Staum-062615

Amalek, our ultimate foe, understood that when unified, we are invincible and indestructible.

Torat-Hakehillah-logo-NEW

Perhaps on a deeper level, the mitzvah of parah adumah at this junction was not just to purify the body, but the spirit as well.

Halacha isn’t random; it’s a mechanism guiding individuals and society to a higher ethical plateau.

Question: Should we wash our hands in the bathroom with soap and water, or by pouring water from a vessel with handles three times, alternating hands? I have heard it said that a vessel is used only in the morning upon awakening. What are the rules pertaining to young children? What is the protocol if no vessel is available? Additionally, may we dry our hands via an electric dryer?

Harry Koenigsberg
(Via E-Mail)

Less clear, however, is whether the concept applies to the area of civil law such as the law of transfer of property.

The greatest of men, Moshe, had to wait for Hashem to sprinkle purifying waters on Bnei Yisrael to mark the conclusion of the period of death.

My Plate, My Food
‘My Loaf Is Forbidden To You’
(Nedarim 34b)

Of Chukkim “Satan and the nations of the world made fun.” They may appear irrational & superstitious

I realized from this story that I was sent as a messenger from above. Hashem has many helpers in this world to help do his work.

Tosafos answers that nevertheless the sprinkling is a part of his taharah process.

“What difference does that make?” replied Shraga. “What counts is the agreement that we made. I said two hundred fifty and you accepted.”

Zaidie’s legacy of smiles and loving words was all but buried with him, now the family fights over $

Israel’s complaining frustrated Moshe, making it increasingly hard for him to lead effectively

More Articles from Rabbi Dani Staum
Staum-062615

Amalek, our ultimate foe, understood that when unified, we are invincible and indestructible.

Staum-052215

Every person is presented with moments when he/she must make difficult decisions about how to proceed.

Humility is not achieved when all is well and life is peachy but rather when times are trying and challenging.

People often think that all they are missing is “just a little more” and then they can be truly happy.

To many of our brethren Chanukah has lost its meaning.

A person who truly feels that everything is a blessing from G-d will count his blessings and realize just how much he has.

Avraham became a great man during the 175 years of his life, while his predecessors became increasingly wicked, despite staggering knowledge, during their lifetimes of hundreds of years.

Often in life we become stuck – stuck in the morass of our habits and the rote of our comfort level.

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/judaism/parsha/the-maids-sons/2012/12/27/

Scan this QR code to visit this page online: