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

    The women too

    The Exodus from Egypt, Golden Haggadah, Catalonia, c.1300

    When the king decides he has had enough he tells the Israelites they can go.

    But he seems to think that most will stay put and only a select number will leave and have a celebration outside Egypt’s borders. That is why he asks who will be going (Ex. 10:8).

    Moses says that everyone will go, young and old, sons and daughters.

    The king tries to negotiate. In verse 11 he says that only the men should go.

    In Egypt the men do the important things – not only in Egypt but in most cultures up to this day. Do you remember the notion that only men could sign cheques?

    Moses is not having any of this. Daughters will go as well as sons, he says – even flocks and herds, nothing and no-one will remain.

    The insistence that women are more than the stay-at-home cooks and cleaners is not for Moses, nor should it be for us. The home must not be neglected, but women should not be belittled or left out of religious life.

    Currently women’s Torah study is developing. Neither kings nor any other males have a right to prevent women’s religious expression.

    Comments are closed.