Tuesday, February 12, 2008

The advantage of ugliness, for a scholar


"The daughter of the Caesar told Rabbi Yehoshua ben Chananiah: The splendid Torah is in ugly jugs!

"He replied: Learn from your father's household; in what do they place wine?

"She said: In clay jugs.

"He asked: Everyone uses clay jugs, and you use clay jugs? You should put it in silver and gold jugs!

"She went and put the wine in silver and gold jugs, and the wine went bad. He said to her: Torah is this way, too.

"She asked: But aren't there sages who are attractive and learned?

"He replied: If they were ugly, they would be more learned."

(Talmud, Nedarim 50b)

Have a great day,

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