Isaac Deutcher (excerpt from The Non-Jewish Jew - 1958)
The Jewish heretic who transcends Jewry belongs to a Jewish tradition. You may, if you like, see Akher as a prototype of those great revolutionaries of modern thought. Spinoza, Heine, Marx, Rosa Luxemburg, Trotsky, and Freud. You may, if you wish to, place them within a Jewish tradition. They all went beyond the boundaries ofJewry. They found Jewry too narrow, too archaic, and too constrictng. They all looked for ideals and fulfillment beyond it, and they represent the sum and substance of much that is greatest in modern thought, the sum and substance of the most profound upheavals that have taken lace in philosophy, sociology, economics, and politics in the last three centuries.
Did they have anything in common with one another? Have they perhaps impressed mankind though so greatly because of their special "Jewish genius"? I do not believe in the exclusive genius of any race. Yet I thnik thta in some was they were very Jewish indeed. They had in themselves something of the quintessene of Jewish life and of the Jewish intellect. They were a priori exceptional in that as Jews they dwelt on the borderlines of various civilaztions, religions, and national cultures. They were born and brought up on the borderlines of various epochs. Their minds matured where the most diverse cultural influences crossed and fertilized each other. They lived on the margins or in the nooks and crannies of their respective nations. Each of them was in society and et not in it, of it and yet not of it. It was this that enabled them to rise in thought above thier societies, above thier nations, above thier times and generations, and to strike out mentally into wide new horizons and far into the future.
Midrash Rabbah - Devarim
"When you come in" - story of Batya
"When you go out" - blessing to Reuven: "Let Reuven live and not die" (Devarim, 33:6)
Midrash Rabbah - Vayikra
‘Whom Mered married’ this is Calev.
R. Abba b. Kahana and R. Yehuda b. Simon [differ in their interpretation]:
One says he rebelled (morad) against the Spies plot, and she rebelled against her father’s decree. Let the
rebel marry the rebel.
One says, he saved the flock (Israel) and she saved the shepherd (Moses).
Megaleh Amukos - R' Nosson Nota Shapiro (1584-1633) - Interpretation 187
1) Moses wanted to enter the Land of Israel because he foresaw with prophecy that in the end of days the verse will be fulfilled ‘Then I will convert the peoples to a pure language that all of them call in the name of the Lord, to worship Him of one accord.’
That is why Moses wanted to enter Israel, to bring close those that are far, and usher them under the wings of the Shechina, just as he began to do this during the Exodus from Egypt, taking a large multitude of Egyptians with him because he wanted to bring those alienated close.
This is what he meant ‘I beseeched to G -d,’ that his prayer was not on his own behalf it was on behalf of Gd,
to make all serve Him on one accord as will indeed be in the future…
But to this G-d answered ‘You already have much.’ This refers to what it says in the Midrash (cited earlier Source 2): ‘You shall be blessed when you come and you shall be blessed when you depart’ ‘When you come in’
refers to when Moses entered this World and he brought close the distant, meaning Batya daughter of Pharaoh who converted. ‘When you depart’ refers to when Moses left this World, and he brought close the distant referring to Reuben.
So G-d is answering him, You want to enter Israel in order to bring those that are distant close, ‘you already have much,’ meaning, you already brought many close [to G-d] both with your birth and with your passing! This is hinted to in the word [‘you already have] much’ , in Hebrew, ‘rav’, רב. This is an abbreviation for R euben and B for Batya. Reuben when you left, Batya when you came.