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Brighton and Hove Progressive Synagogue -drasha

The commentator Shemen ha-Tov says that the Torah starts with a ב, not an א, to teach us that we are not supposed to be lone wolves (א denoting the number 1) but instead we should make partnerships and join with others (ב denoting 2).

Partnership and collaboration has never been more important, as yet another round of sickening violence blights and ends innocent lives in Israel-Palestine.

In particular, indiscriminate attacks on civilian targets are far, far beyond unacceptable, and will achieve nothing except yet more cycles of bloodshed.

Last week, we read from Ecclesiastes, that there is “a time to kill”. This week, though, Simchat Torah, is supposed to be a time for joy: joy at life. This, as we read Parashat B’reishit, Brighton & Hove Progressive Synagogue and Liberal Judaism are praying for peace and justice, for the safety of our Israeli and Palestinian friends and family, and for actors in the conflict to remember that we are all kin, descended from the same parents. כן יהי רצון, may this be God’s will. Rabbi Gabriel Kanter-Webber


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