Shlomo Yitzchaki (Hebrew: רבי שלמה יצחקי) 22 February 1040 – 13 July 1105, today generally known by the acronym Rashi (Hebrew: רש"י, RAbbi SHlomo Itzhaki), was a medieval French rabbi and author of a comprehensive commentary on the Talmud and commentary on the Tanakh. Acclaimed for his ability to present the basic meaning of the text in a concise and lucid fashion, Rashi appeals to both learned scholars and beginner students, and his works remain a centerpiece of contemporary Jewish study.
(ד) כֵּיוָן שֶׁאָמַר לוֹ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לְמֹשֶׁה לַעֲשׂוֹת אֶת הַמִּשְׁכָּן, עָמְדוּ כָּל יִשְׂרָאֵל וְנִתְנַדְּבוּ, מִי שֶׁהֵבִיא כֶסֶף וּמִי שֶׁהֵבִיא זָהָב אוֹ נְחֹשֶׁת וְאַבְנֵי שֹׁהַם וְאַבְנֵי מִלּוּאִים, הֵבִיאוּ בִּזְרִיזוּת הַכֹּל. אָמְרוּ הַנָּשִׁים, מַה יֵּשׁ לָנוּ לִתֵּן בְּנִדְבַת הַמִּשְׁכָּן. עָמְדוּ וְהֵבִיאוּ אֶת הַמַּרְאוֹת וְהָלְכוּ לָהֶן אֵצֶל מֹשֶׁה. כְּשֶׁרָאָה מֹשֶׁה אוֹתָן הַמַּרְאוֹת, זָעַף בָּהֶן. אָמַר לָהֶם לְיִשְׂרָאֵל, טְלוּ מַקְלוֹת וְשַׁבְּרוּ שׁוֹקֵיהֶן שֶׁל אֵלּוּ. הַמַּרְאוֹת לְמָה הֵן צְרִיכִין. אָמַר לוֹ הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא לְמֹשֶׁה, מֹשֶׁה, עַל אֵלּוּ אַתָּה מְבַזֶּה. הַמַּרְאוֹת הָאֵלּוּ הֵן הֶעֱמִידוּ כָּל הַצְּבָאוֹת הַלָּלוּ בְּמִצְרָיִם. טֹל מֵהֶן וַעֲשֵׂה מֵהֶן כִּיּוֹר נְחֹשֶׁת וְכַנּוֹ לַכֹּהֲנִים, שֶׁמִּמֶּנּוּ יִהְיוּ מִתְקַדְּשִׁין הַכֹּהֲנִים, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: וַיַּעַשׂ אֵת הַכִּיּוֹר נְחֹשֶׁת וְאֵת כַּנּוֹ נְחֹשֶׁת בְּמַרְאֹת הַצֹּבְאֹת אֲשֶׁר צָבְאוּ (שמות לח, ח), בְּאוֹתָן הַמַּרְאוֹת שֶׁהֶעֱמִידוּ אֶת כָּל הַצְּבָאוֹת הָאֵלֶּה. לְפִיכָךְ כְּתִיב: וּנְחֹשֶׁת הַתְּנוּפָה שִׁבְעִים כִּכָּר, נְחֹשֶׁת הַכַּלּוֹת.
(4) When the Holy One, blessed be He, told Moses to build the Tabernacle, all the Israelites brought their contributions. Some brought silver, others brought gold or copper or onyx stones or unset stones. They brought everything eagerly. The women asked themselves: What contribution can we make to the Sanctuary? They arose, took their mirrors, and brought them to Moses. When Moses saw them he became angry with them. He said to the Israelites: Take your canes and beat them on their shoulders. What purpose do these mirrors serve? The Holy One, blessed be He, called out to Moses: Moses, do you mistreat them because of these? These very mirrors produced the hosts in Egypt. Take them and make a basin of brass and its base for the priests, that they may sanctify the priests from it, as it is said: And he made the laver of brass, and base thereof of brass, of the mirrors of the serving women that did service (ibid. 38:8), for they had produced all the hosts. Therefore it is written: And the brass of the offering was seventy talents (ibid., v. 29), that is, the offering of the wives amounted to seventy talents.
(1) From the mirrors of the women who gathered. It was usual for women then as now to beautify themselves in front of a mirror in the morning. But there were some pious women who renounced worldly vanities and donated their copper mirrors for the making of the holy vessels. These women would gather every day near the entrance to the Tent of Meeting to pray and receive instruction in the commandments.
Abraham ben Meir Ibn Ezra
(אַבְרָהָם אִבְּן עֶזְרָא or ראב"ע)
1089–c.1167 Spain, was one of the most distinguished Jewish Biblical commentators and philosophers of the Middle Ages.
In this story, what does God see that Moses and others don't?
Rashi and Ibn Ezra have different general approaches, but share some cultural biases as well. Do you notice any? Would you change or add anything if you were writing the commentary?
How do our perspectives and biases affect how we view objects, people and people's actions? What are some ways we might be able to see beyond these when viewing people or things around us?
Are our perspectives and biases,more about others or ourselves?