Saturday, May 25, 2013

"Blessed Are You...For Not Making Me a Gentile"

"9.  Tosefta Berakhot 6:18...R. Judah says:  Three benedictions a man is required to recite each day:  Blessed [are You O Lord...] that You did not make me a Gentile.  Blessed [are You O Lord...] that you did not make me an ignoramus.  Blessed [are You O Lord...] that You did not make me a woman.  A Gentile--as it is written, 'All the nations are as nothing before him;  they are accounted by him as less than nothing and emptiness' (Isa 40:17)." (Parables of the Sages by Notley and Safrai)

Does anyone have any thoughts about this?



    read the comments too...

    1. Derek actually came out against the tradition. Interesting. I'm glad.

    2. And I'm surprised Gene said the blessing was purely about thankfulness. It is NOT positive toward Gentiles. This Midrash PROVES that much at least. This Midrash says that Gentiles are "less than nothing".

    3. I hope people understand that Isaiah 40 doesn't say that Gentiles are less than nothing; Only the Midrash says that.