R’eih – Torah In Haiku


Carnivores rejoice! …
Eat meat to your heart’s content …
G-d says it’s okay —-

But first check the list …
What’s allowed and forbidden …
And don’t eat the blood —-

The creation story in Genesis can be understood to allow only vegetarian diets, but after the flood G-d says it’s okay for mankind to eat meat. In Deuteronomy, of course, stories and laws from the first four books of Torah are repeated. This week’s portion includes some of the dietary laws concerning meat.

First, we’re told (Deut 12:20) that G-d understands our desire to eat meat – “When G-d shall enlarge your border as promised, and you shall say, I will eat meat because your soul longs to eat meat; you may eat meat to your heart’s desire.”

But we are reminded (Deut 12:23) not to eat the blood – “Be sure that you eat not the blood; for blood is the life; and you may not eat the life with the flesh.”

Finally, in Chapter 14, we get a nice summary of the mammals, sea creatures, and birds which may or may not be eaten. It’s ok to eat meat, but as with everything else, G-d has rules.

Mouth watering image by Mike via Flickr

Ed Nickow | The Torah In Haiku

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