There is such a wonderful walking rhythm to our Torah readings, especially perhaps in the Book of Bereshit, Genesis. It can feel like we are actually moving our feet, alongside Avraham and Sarah. These stories, even with all their fractiousness intact, help us walk through our own lives. This week, in Chaye Sarah, we read about the death of Sarah. Death and life, tumah (impurity) and tahor (purity) inform much of Torah. How do we bring these sensibilities forward from their lives to ours?
Shavua tov, everyone,
This week, we are reading Chaye Sarah, literally the life of Sarah. But as soon as we enter into this passage we realize Sarah has died in Kiryat Arba, or Hebron, at the age of 127. Many of our commentators, including Rashi, read into the juxtaposition of the Akedah, the binding and near-death of Isaac, with the death of Sarah. According to various Midrashim, Sarah is told Abraham killed Isaac, or he nearly killed Isaac, and in the third midrash Isaac returns to her. But in answer to her questioning of him, he tells her of what happened – and her joy in her son is cut. She wailed – and died, the sounds of the shofar accompanying her death.