1. Genesis: Toledot

Tons of soap opera drama this week!  Very All My Children.  I didn’t think I’d enjoy reading the Torah as much as I do.  I also realize that there’s a lot more to it.  In order to get everything, understand all the layers, I’ll have to read it again every year.  Then I’ll want to add the Zohar to the mix.  Gosh, I’m glad I started so young!

There’s a funny thing going on in my life right now.  All the usual stuff with a teen and a tween, a husband, family, friends, a job…..There might even be a little extra in the drama department at the moment.  But I feel really comfortable in my life and my skin, very balanced and able to cope.  More so than usual, and I’m a pretty balanced gal most of the time.  Do you think it’s Torah?  That’s the only thing that’s different.  Kinda weird.  But I don’t want to get all freaky and superstitious.  It is kinda weird, though, right?

So this week’s cast is Isaac, his wife Rebekah, their twins Esau and Jacob, and of course God.  God plays him/herself.  Isaac is played by Gregory Peck channeling Atticus Finch.  He’s good and fair.  Well, mostly fair.  He does favor one son over the other, so he’s not perfect.  Rebekah is Eva Longoria as a desperate housewife.  Not only does she favor one son over the other, but she teaches the favored son to trick his own brother, her other son.  Totally not good parenting.  Then there’s older twin Esau, he came out first after a very difficult pregnancy.  He’s James Dean as the Marlboro Man.  Macho, outdoorsy, hairy (swear it says so IN THE TORAH!).  I see flannel shirts, a mustache.  By the end of this section he has 4 wives all at once.  2 of them he  married because he was pissed at his brother Jacob.  I had more trouble characterizing Jacob.  He’s the pasty faced (no, it doesn’t say that in the Torah) mama’s boy.  I’m thinking George Costanza as a mama’s boy.  Whiny, pale, a little manipulative.

In a nutshell, Isaac and his beautiful wife Rebekah have had no luck having children.  So Isaac asks God to help and Rebekah gets pregnant, has a difficult pregnancy, and finally delivers twins.  Jacob favors Esau and Rebekah favors Jacob.  In Isaac’s old age, he’s lost his sight, and he tells Esau to go hunt his favorite game, prepare a meal, and feed it to him then Isaac will bless Esau.  Rebekah overhears and tells Jacob to get lambs from the yard, she will prepare Isaac’s favorite meal and Jacob will disguise himself and present the meal as if he were Esau and receive Isaac’s blessing.  All goes as planned, then Esau comes in, sees what has happened and tells Isaac.  Apparently Isaac only has one blessing in him and he can’t take it back from Jacob.  So Rebekah tells Jacob to leave to avoid Esau’s anger, Esau goes out and gets two more wifes (he’s already got two).  Nice family!  Kind of like a real family but they left out all of the good parts.  The love and compassion that must have happened in between the deceipt and lies.

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