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Mama Deb
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December 2010
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Mama Deb [userpic]

For those who are interested:

Parashah Mishpatim, a d'var torah from the book of Exodus.


I have read this in my bible and most of it does make sense especially for the time when it was written, but in my bible there was a portion where it said if a man raped a woman, or a virgin rather, that he must pay her father and/or marry her if that is what her father wants. This disturbed me because I wouldn't want to be married to a man who raped me. And because if a man wanted to marry her and she didn't want to marry him, he could rape her, and then still get her against her will if her father was so inclined, which is like even more of a rape in my eyes. I can see the part about respecting a woman, or at least a virgin's value or rights, but it also bothered me that a woman's value is judged in relation to her sexual experience or lack thereof, as well as in monetary ways. But then, the value of men could and was also measured in money, how much they were worth if they were sold. But as the article said, this was a different time and people now take a different view of slavery in general, and most feel that humans can't and should not be bought or sold as property. As for penalties of raping a virgin, I suppose that having to pay a fine of the the bride price of the virgin was as close as they could get to justice because nothing anyone could do could remove the damage to the woman's body or to take away the experience once it's happened. I wonder if there were rules or laws for repeat offenders, or rapists. Or what the law was concerning if a man attacked and raped another man's wife or a widow, since she was no longer a virgin? Does the torah say? Because my bibles don't have anything about that, as I remember it.

I liked Exodus as I recall because so many of the laws and rules that were given to the Hebrews make so much sense in a practical way. It might not initially, if you don't know why, but if you give it consideration, and think, they really do. It also sort of reminds me of the Grand Nagus telling Quark that the Rules of Aquisition (sp?) sounded so much better than Suggestions of Aquisition, or Advice of Aquisition, or even Hints For Succeful Aquisition. I paraphrased a bit as you probably figureed out. But these laws about how to prepare food and mold growing in the house or leasions on the skin, and even veterinary care, they were all sort of like telling people how to avoid getting sick or spreading infection or making other's sick. It's something that I can understand a perfectly good reason for. I'm not as fond of the parts later on like David laying the people of a land out end to end and measuring them with a rope and killing the people who are unfortunate enough to be at the end of the length of rope like every other measurment. It was indiscrimanent and made no sense. At least not to me.

I need to look up what happens after a rape. I don't believe, though, that they would force the girl to marry the rapist against her will - and if they did, she could ask for a divorce, and they would force him to give it to her. But the Torah and Jewish law certainly talks about what happens after an adult woman is raped. I need to look it up.

It's funny. What you regard as protection against disease, I see as penalty for speaking gossip. Tzara is a spiritual thing, not a physical thing.

Also, of course, we don't look for practical reasons for many of the laws, especially laws of kashrut, because then we can say, "They don't apply anymore."