• Home
  • Parashah Insights
  • Ask the Rabbi
  • Festivals & Fasts
  • Articles
  • Books
  • About
  •  

    Dust on your feet – Bo

    The fast-moving redemptory events of the Torah portions at this time of the year stem from Moses’ experience at the Burning Bush, which we read about in Parashat Sh’mot.

    Moses became the people’s leader towards emergence from slavery because God met him and told him, “Take your shoes off your feet, for the place where you stand is holy ground” (Ex. 3:5).

    Removing the shoes on holy ground is part of the law of the Sanctuary; at the end of Mishnah B’rachot there comes a rule that a person may not approach the Temple with their shoes on, wearing their money belt or with dust on their feet.

    Metaphorically this constitutes a program for life, or rather for making life into holy ground.

    Walking without shoes is customary amongst some peoples, but most of us find it difficult (and spare a thought for those who cannot afford footwear at all). There is a lesson: even when life is difficult we have to keep walking.

    Not wearing a money belt? In a society based on money it is hard to manage without money, but we learn that we gain some of the best things in life – especially life itself – without charge. And if we have money we should learn how to use it wisely.

    Not having dust on one’s feet can mean not dragging the dirt into one’s life – dirt in the sense of immodesty, immorality and inhumanity.

    In a homiletical sense it means not being totally earth-bound but to have ideas and ideals that are heaven-bent.

    Comments are closed.