Yitro 5777

First, the appointment of judges by Moses, then, the revelation of the Torah at Sinai. So far, Moses channelled a direct connection to God; problems were solved through prophecy. Now, judges must struggle to interpret, compromise and resolve real-life disputes. There is surely some connection between divine Justice and individual judgements – like the connection between emotions and language – yet the gap between them is painfully infinite. Decisions must be made, there is never a choice to escape them, although each necessarily carries a tinge of injustice too. The Torah given at Sinai marks a new era of interpreting the law, rather than flowing in its raw potential. Here too, we have no choice: we struggle to transcend this limited world.

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[Inspired by: Exodus 18; Likkutei Moharan Tinyana 78; The Jerusalem District Court; and The Sword of Damocles by Wenceslas Hollar.]

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