Tuesday, November 11, 2008

Honor your mother


"When Rabbi Tarfon's mother wished to ascend to her bed, he would bend down and pick her up. When she wished to descend, she descended upon him.

"When Rabbi Tarfon spoke of this in the beit midrash, the sages said to him, 'You still have not reached even half of the obligation for honor! Has she thrown a wallet into the sea, and you have refrained from embarrassing her?"

(Talmud, Kiddushin 31b)

Have a great day,


  1. Um. What?
    Usually I'm right there with the thought (or at least, R' Torchiner, you ususally have an explanatory comment...).

    I'm not quite connecting with this one.

  2. My understanding (which, I'll admit, is shaped by the context in the gemara) is that offering honor is easier than handling harm to one's self - and that both are within the purview of honoring one's parents.