Friday, 16 April 2010

Jeremy Taylor, שמות רבה, and Going for the Gold

It's pretty cool to see midrash, specifically שמות רבה quoted by Jeremy Taylor. Since I like to keep my blog fairly apolitical, so i will try and resist from relating the idea of grabbing at shiny coal and getting burnt to some recent political developments:

And then, a few lines later, Taylor references another midrash, this time, i think it's from Pirke De Rabbi Eliezer:

Absalom, caught by his hair in the tree felt as if he was dangling directly over hell, and to cut himself down would be to effectively hasten his death. Therefore, he saw his painful
predicamentas buying him time, effectively. That's according to Rashi, who brings the midrash. Taylor continues:

Although doing the right thing is pretty clear, we tend to get our priorities a bit mixed up, so to speak. Perhaps Absalom was also entangled in his own delusions that he thought he wouldn't be caught. Hopefully on a personal level we won't sink that low. But as a voting population, hopefully
we'll know when to cut down our entangled, corrupt leadership. For a more politically explicit rendering of this story, see Dryden's 1681 poem 'Absalom and Achitophel,' by clicking here.

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