Saturday, December 17, 2011

"Olive Seedlings" - On the Name of this Blog

I have chosen to name this blog "Olive Seedlings" based upon the midrash in Bamidbar Raba 8:9 which interprets Psalms 128 as referring to gerei tzedek (converts to Judaism). On verse 3 the midrash states:
"בניך כשתילי זיתים" מה הזית הזה - זיתים לאכילה, זיתים ליבש, וזיתים לשמן, ושמנו דולק מכל השמנים, ואין עליו נושרין לא בימות החמה ולא בימות הגשמים, כך באים בני הגרים מהם בעלי מקרא, מהם בעלי משנה, מהם בעלי משא ומתן, מהן חכמים, מהם נבונים, ומהם יודעי דבר בעתו, ויש להם זרע קיים לעולם. (במדבר רבה ח:ט)
"Your sons shall be as olive seedlings" - Just as the olive tree produces olives for eating, olives for drying, olives for oil, its oil burns better than all other oils, and its leaves do not fall during the summer or the winter, similarly the from the children of converts will come masters of Scripture, masters of Mishna, masters of discourse (or financial transactions), men of wisdom, men of understanding, men who know what is needed at a given moment, and they shall have descendants that last for all time.
As the son of a ger tzedek, this medrash - of which the above is only a small piece - is particularly meaningful to me and it is my hope that the blessings spoken of in the medrash will be fulfilled in my family and my brothers' families.

May the Torah that is learned by those who read my postings here be a zechus for my father, ר' דוד אהרן בן אברהם ע"ה.

No comments: