Skip to main content

Thought for the Day: Shabbos M'ein Olam HaBah -- Mamash

At the end of the first siman on Shabbos (242), the Rema notes an interesting custom about which he has heard, but never seen anyone actually do it.  The minag he mentions (from the Maharil) is to serve "pashtida" for the Shabbos meal.  Pashtida is something like a meat pocket, covered above and below with dough and is "zecher l'mahn" - a memorial to the angelic food we ate in the midbar.  The memorial, of course, is because the mahn was found each morning covered above and below in dew.  Seems like quite a beautiful minhag and one wonders why we don't do it.

The Bi'ur Halacha, though, says that on the face of the matter, one is astounded by this minhag.  After all, he says, since the mahn did not actually fall on Shabbos, that would be the one day of the week not to server pashtida!  He notes the answer of Tosafos -- that since the mahn didn't fall, that's exactly why we need a memorial -- is a bit of a forced answer.  Moreover, if that were the explanation, then the custom should have extended to Yom Tov as well, since the mahn also didn't fall then.  Don't worry, the Bi'ur Halacha is not going to abandon us, he is merely whetting our appetite for the beautiful and fitting explanation brought by the Tosafos Shabbos.

There are really three Shabbosim: Shabbos B'reishis, the weekly Shabbos, and Shabbos l'Asid Lavo, the Shabbos of the future that is wholly Shabbos.  The Shabbos we celebrate weekly is really a testimony to Shabbos B'reishis to demonstrate to the world that we know the world has a Creator.  In addition, however, since Shabbos B'reishis itself is actually a model of the Shabbos l'Asid Lavo, we do several things that are also an echo of that future which is wholly Shabbos.  We have meat and fish in expectation of the main courses of that meal, the Livyason and "Shor Habar".  We have wine in expectation of the wine being preserved in grapes for the tzadikim at that s'uda.  Finally, Chazal have told us that one of the names of heaven is "sh'chakim" (grinders) because they are grinding mahn to serve to the tzadikim at that great s'uda of the future.  It comes out, then, that the pashtida is not a memorial of the mahn eaten in the midbar, but in expectation of that grand s'uda for tzadikim in the future, the time that is entirely Shabbos.

Seems like quite a beautiful minhag and one wonders why we don't do it.

Comments

Popular posts from this blog

Thought for the Day: Battling the Evil Inclination on all Fronts

Yom Kippur.  When I was growing up, there were three annual events that marked the Jewish calendar: eating matzos on Passover, lighting candles on Chanuka, and  fasting on Yom Kippur.  Major news organizations around the world report on the "surreal" and "eerie" quiet of the streets in even the most secular neighborhoods of Israel.  Yom Kippur.

As you know, I am observant of Jewish law.  Some have even called me "ultra orthodox" (not in a kind way).  Given that, I have a question.  How likely do you think that I would be tempted to eat on Yom Kippur, that most holy day of the year?  Let's make the scale zero to ten, where zero is "as likely as driving through McDonald's on Shabbos and ordering a Big Mac with extra cheese." and ten is "as likely as breathing regularly".  Take your time.  If you answered "zero"; thank you, but -- sadly and penitently -- no.  The answer is more like nine; I'd like to say lower, but i…

Thought for the Day: Sometimes a Food Loses Its Identity When It Loses Its Bracha; Sometimes It Doesn't

Let's start with a question: Why are We Allowed to Drink Coffee and Whiskey Made by Non-Jews?  Before you ask,"Why would I think that I shouldn't be able to drink whiskey and coffee made by non-Jews?", I'll tell you. Simple, we all know that Chazal made a decree -- known as בישול עכו''ם/bishul akim -- that particular foods cooked by non-Jews are forbidden.  There are basically two criteria that determines if a dish falls into this category:
Is not consumed raw.Fit for a royal banquet. Cooked carrots, therefore, are not a problem since they can be eaten raw (I actually prefer them that way).  Baked beans are find because the are not prestigious enough.  (For great synopsis of the laws, see the article on the Star-K site, FOOD FIT FOR A KING, by Rabbi Moshe Heinemann, shlita.)  There are lots of cool questions and details (baked potatoes are prestigious, does that make even potato chips and issue?) which are for another time.  Clearly, though, both coffee an…

Thought for the Day: Coming Into This World for Torah, Avodah, and Acts of Loving Kindness

This TftD is so self-serving that I should be embarrassed.  But I am not... talking about grandchildren is always off budget.  I have, bli ayin hara, a beautiful new grandson; born at 6:11 PM CDT last Friday night.  The secular (aka -- by me, anyway -- slave) date is October 20, 2017 CE.  The Hebrew (aka Real) date is certainly Rosh Chodesh חשון/Cheshvan and certainly in the year 5778 since Creation.  The date, you ask... good question!

Sundown on Friday night was 6:01 PM CDT, which means he was born either at the end of the last day of תשרי or the beginning of the first day of Cheshvan; a period know as בין השמשות/twilight.  What's the big deal, you ask... I am so glad you asked.  We all deal quite handily with בין השמשות every week and every holiday; we're just stringent.  We start Shabbos and the first day of Yom Tov before בין השמשות; that is, before sundown.  Likewise, we end Shabbos and the first day of Yom Tov after בין השמשות; some 42, 50, 60, or 72 minutes after sundo…