Star Wars & Judaism VIII: The Force Awakens

Family Origins

LOR SAN TEKKA: I know where you come from. Before you called yourself Kylo Ren.
LOR SAN TEKKA: The First Order rose from the dark side... you did not.

KYLO REN: I'll show you the dark side.

LOR SAN TEKKA: You may try, but you cannot deny the truth that is your family.

(א) עֲשָׂרָה יוֹחֲסִין עָלוּ מִבָּבֶל, כַּהֲנֵי, לְוִיֵּי, יִשְׂרְאֵלֵי, חֲלָלֵי, גֵּרֵי, וַחֲרוּרֵי, מַמְזֵרֵי, נְתִינֵי, שְׁתוּקֵי, וַאֲסוּפֵי. כַּהֲנֵי, לְוִיֵּי וְיִשְׂרְאֵלֵי, מֻתָּרִים לָבֹא זֶה בָזֶה. לְוִיֵּי, יִשְׂרְאֵלֵי, חֲלָלֵי, גֵּרֵי וַחֲרוּרֵי, מֻתָּרִים לָבֹא זֶה בָזֶה. גֵּרֵי וַחֲרוּרֵי, מַמְזֵרֵי וּנְתִינֵי שְׁתוּקֵי וַאֲסוּפֵי, כֻּלָּם מֻתָּרִין לָבֹא זֶה בָזֶה:

(1) Ten genealogical classes went up from Babylonia [in the time of Ezra and Nehemiah]: Priests, Levites, Israelites, halalim, converts, freed slaves, mamzerim, netinim, hushlings and foundlings. Priests, Levites and Israelites may marry each other. Levites, Israelites, halalim, converts, and freed slaves may marry each other. Converts, freed slaves, mamzerim and netinim, hushlings and foundlings, may marry each other.

וְאָמַר רַבִּי יוֹחָנָן מִשּׁוּם רַבִּי יוֹסֵי: שְׁלֹשָׁה דְּבָרִים בִּקֵּשׁ מֹשֶׁה מִלִּפְנֵי הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, וְנָתַן לוֹ.

בִּקֵּשׁ שֶׁתִּשְׁרֶה שְׁכִינָה עַל יִשְׂרָאֵל, וְנָתַן לוֹ, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: ״הֲלוֹא בְּלֶכְתְּךָ עִמָּנוּ״.

בִּקֵּשׁ שֶׁלֹּא תִּשְׁרֶה שְׁכִינָה עַל עוֹבְדֵי כּוֹכָבִים, וְנָתַן לוֹ, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: ״וְנִפְלִינוּ אֲנִי וְעַמְּךָ״.

בִּקֵּשׁ לְהוֹדִיעוֹ דְּרָכָיו שֶׁל הַקָּדוֹשׁ בָּרוּךְ הוּא, וְנָתַן לוֹ, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר: ״הוֹדִיעֵנִי נָא אֶת דְּרָכֶיךָ״, אָמַר לְפָנָיו: רִבּוֹנוֹ שֶׁל עוֹלָם!

מִפְּנֵי מָה יֵשׁ צַדִּיק וְטוֹב לוֹ, וְיֵשׁ צַדִּיק וְרַע לוֹ, יֵשׁ רָשָׁע וְטוֹב לוֹ, וְיֵשׁ רָשָׁע וְרַע לוֹ?

אָמַר לוֹ: מֹשֶׁה, צַדִּיק וְטוֹב לוֹ — צַדִּיק בֶּן צַדִּיק. צַדִּיק וְרַע לוֹ — צַדִּיק בֶּן רָשָׁע. רָשָׁע וְטוֹב לוֹ — רָשָׁע בֶּן צַדִּיק. רָשָׁע וְרַע לוֹ — רָשָׁע בֶּן רָשָׁע.

And Rabbi Yoḥanan said from the name of Rabbi Yose: "Moses requested three things from the Holy One, Blessed be He, all of which were granted him. He requested that the Divine Presence rest upon Israel, and He granted it to him, as it is stated: 'For how can it be known that I have found grace in Your sight, I and Your people? Is it not in that You go with us, so that we are distinguished, I and Your people, from all the people that are on the face of the earth?' (Exodus 33:16).

He requested that the Divine Presence not rest upon the nations of the world, and He granted it to him, as it is stated: 'So that we are distinguished, I and Your people, from all the people on the face of the earth' (Exodus 33:16).

He requested that the ways in which God conducts the world be revealed to him, and He granted it to him, as it is stated: 'Show me Your ways and I will know You' (Exodus 33:13).
He said before Him: 'Master of the Universe. Why is it that the righteous prosper, the righteous suffer, the wicked prosper, the wicked suffer?'
He said to him: 'Moses, the righteous who prospers is a righteous, the son of a righteous. The righteous who suffers is a righteous , the son of a wicked. The wicked who prospers is a wicked , the son of a righteous. The wicked who suffers is a wicked person, the son of a wicked person.'"


ת"ר האוכל בשוק הרי זה דומה לכלב

ויש אומרים פסול לעדות

The Sages taught: One who eats in the marketplace is comparable to a dog,

And some say: "He is disqualified from bearing witness."

שאין נשותיהן של עניים שותות יין

...wives of poor men don't drink wine.

Drinking from Animal's Water Trough

אמר רבי יהושע בן לוי בשעה שאמר הקדוש ברוך הוא לאדם וקוץ ודרדר תצמיח לך זלגו עיניו דמעות אמר לפניו רבונו של עולם אני וחמורי נאכל באבוס אחד כיון שאמר לו בזעת אפך תאכל לחם נתקררה דעתו

Rabbi Yehoshua ben Levi said: "When the Holy One, Blessed be He, said to Adam: 'Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to you, and you shall eat the herb of the field' (Genesis 3:18), his eyes streamed with tears. He said before Him: 'Master of the Universe, will my donkey and I eat from one trough?' After God said to him: 'In the sweat of your face shall you eat bread' (Genesis 3:19), his mind was settled."


REY: So you're with the Resistance?

FINN: "Obviously. Yes. I am. I'm with the Resistance, yeah."

(ז) מִדְּבַר־שֶׁ֖קֶר תִּרְחָ֑ק וְנָקִ֤י וְצַדִּיק֙ אַֽל־תַּהֲרֹ֔ג כִּ֥י לֹא־אַצְדִּ֖יק רָשָֽׁע׃
(7) Keep far from a false charge; do not bring death on those who are innocent and in the right, for I will not acquit the wrongdoer.

(יח) רַבָּן שִׁמְעוֹן בֶּן גַּמְלִיאֵל אוֹמֵר, עַל שְׁלשָׁה דְבָרִים הָעוֹלָם עוֹמֵד, עַל הַדִּין וְעַל הָאֱמֶת וְעַל הַשָּׁלוֹם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (זכריה ח) אֱמֶת וּמִשְׁפַּט שָׁלוֹם שִׁפְטוּ בְּשַׁעֲרֵיכֶם:

(18) Rabban Shimon ben Gamaliel used to say: on three things does the world stand: On justice, on truth and on peace, as it is said: “execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates” (Zechariah 8:16).

תנו רבנן כיצד מרקדין לפני הכלה בית שמאי אומרים

The Sages taught: How does one dance before the bride?

Beit Shammai say:

כלה כמות שהיא ובית הלל אומרים כלה נאה וחסודה אמרו להן ב"ש לב"ה הרי שהיתה חיגרת או סומא אומרי' לה כלה נאה וחסודה והתורה אמרה (שמות כג, ז) מדבר שקר תרחק אמרו להם ב"ה לב"ש לדבריכם מי שלקח מקח רע מן השוק ישבחנו בעיניו או יגננו בעיניו הוי אומר ישבחנו בעיניו מכאן אמרו חכמים לעולם תהא דעתו של אדם מעורבת עם הבריות

"The bride as she is."

And Beit Hillel say: "A fair and attractive bride."

Beit Shammai said to Beit Hillel: In a case where the bride was lame or blind, does one say with regard to her: A fair and attractive bride? But the Torah states: “Keep you from a false matter” (Exodus 23:7). Beit Hillel said to Beit Shammai: According to your statement, with regard to one who acquired an inferior acquisition from the market, should another praise it and enhance its value in his eyes or condemn it and diminish its value in his eyes? You must say that he should praise it and enhance its value in his eyes and refrain from causing him anguish. From here the Sages said: A person’s disposition should always be empathetic with mankind, and treat everyone courteously. In this case too, once the groom has married his bride, one praises her as being fair and attractive.


תַנְיָא, רַבִּי שִׁמְעוֹן בֶּן אֶלְעָזָר אוֹמֵר מִשּׁוּם חִילְפָא בַּר אַגְרָא שֶׁאָמַר מִשּׁוּם רַבִּי יוֹחָנָן בֶּן נוּרִי: הַמְקָרֵע בְּגָדָיו בַּחֲמָתוֹ, וְהַמְשַׁבֵּר כֵּלָיו בַּחֲמָתוֹ, וְהַמְפַזֵּר מְעוֹתָיו בַּחֲמָתוֹ, יְהֵא בְּעֵינֶיךָ כְּעוֹבֵד עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה. שֶׁכָּךְ אוּמָּנוּתוֹ שֶׁל יֵצֶר הָרָע: הַיּוֹם אוֹמֵר לוֹ עֲשֵׂה כָּךְ, וּלְמָחָר אוֹמֵר לוֹ עֲשֵׂה כָּךְ, עַד שֶׁאוֹמֵר לוֹ עֲבוֹד עֲבוֹדָה זָרָה וְהוֹלֵךְ וְעוֹבֵד.

It was taught in a baraita that Rabbi Shimon ben Elazar says in the name of Ḥilfa bar Agra, who said in the name of Rabbi Yoḥanan ben Nuri: One who rends his garments in his anger, or who breaks his vessels in his anger, or who scatters his money in his anger, should be like an idol worshipper in your eyes, as that is the craft of the evil inclination. Today it tells him do this, and tomorrow it tells him do that, until eventually, when he no longer controls himself, it tells him worship idols and he goes and worships idols.

Payment of Loan

HAN: Bala-Tik. What's the problem?

BALA-TIK: The problem is we loaned you fifty thousand for this job. I heard you also borrowed fifty thousand from Kanjiklub.

HAN: You know you can't trust those little freaks! How long've we known each other?
BALA-TIK: The question is how much longer will we know each other? Not long. We want our money back now.
HAN: Ya think hunting Rathtars is cheap? I spent that money.

BALA-TIK: Kanjiklub wants their investment back, too.

HAN: I never made a deal with Kanjiklub!

BALA-TIK: Tell that to Kanjiklub.
HAN: Tasu Leech. Good to see you.

TASU LEECH: Wrong again, Solo. It's over for you.
HAN: Boys. You're both gonna get what I promised! Have I ever not delivered for you before?



HAN: What was the second time?

כי אתא רב דימי אמר מנין לנושה בחבירו מנה ויודע שאין לו שאסור לעבור לפניו ת"ל לא תהיה לו כנושה

When Rav Dimi came, he said: "From where one who is owed one hundred dinars by another and knows that the borrower does not have the funds to repay him, that it is prohibited for him to pass before? Learn to say: 'Do not be to him as a creditor' (Exodus 22:24)."

Facing Tests

SNOKE: There's something more. The droid we seek is aboard the Millennium Falcon. In the hands of your father, Han Solo.

KYLO REN: He means nothing to me.

SNOKE: Even you, master of the Knights of Ren, have never faced such a test.

KYLO REN: By the grace of your training, I will not be seduced.

SNOKE: We shall see. We shall see.

(ג) עֲשָׂרָה נִסְיוֹנוֹת נִתְנַסָּה אַבְרָהָם אָבִינוּ עָלָיו הַשָּׁלוֹם וְעָמַד בְּכֻלָּם, לְהוֹדִיעַ כַּמָּה חִבָּתוֹ שֶׁל אַבְרָהָם אָבִינוּ עָלָיו הַשָּׁלוֹם:

With ten trials was Abraham, our father, may peace be upon him, tried, and he withstood them all; to make known how great was the love of Abraham, our father, peace be upon him.

Truth about Jedi

HAN: There're a lot of rumors. Stories. The people who knew him the best think he went looking for the first Jedi temple.

REY: The Jedi were real?

HAN: I used to wonder that myself. Thought it was a bunch of mumbo-jumbo -- magical power holding together good, evil, the dark side and the light. 'Crazy thing is, it's true. The Force, the Jedi, all of it. It's all true.

The Fight of Good vs. Evil

REY: What fight?

MAZ: The only fight: against the dark side. Through the ages, I've seen evil take many forms. The Sith. The Empire. Today, it is the First Order. Their shadow is spreading across the galaxy. We must face them. Fight them. All of us.

ה֣וֹי הָאֹמְרִ֥ים לָרַ֛ע ט֖וֹב וְלַטּ֣וֹב רָ֑ע שָׂמִ֨ים חֹ֤שֶׁךְ לְאוֹר֙ וְא֣וֹר לְחֹ֔שֶׁךְ שָׂמִ֥ים מַ֛ר לְמָת֖וֹק וּמָת֥וֹק לְמָֽר׃

Ah, Those who call evil good And good evil; Who present darkness as light And light as darkness; Who present bitter as sweet And sweet as bitter!

הִגִּ֥יד לְךָ֛ אָדָ֖ם מַה־טּ֑וֹב וּמָֽה־יְהוָ֞ה דּוֹרֵ֣שׁ מִמְּךָ֗ כִּ֣י אִם־עֲשׂ֤וֹת מִשְׁפָּט֙ וְאַ֣הֲבַת חֶ֔סֶד וְהַצְנֵ֥עַ לֶ֖כֶת עִם־אֱלֹהֶֽיךָ׃

“He has told you, O man, what is good, And what the LORD requires of you: Only to do justice And to love goodness, And to walk modestly with your God."

Prophetic Visions

How Things Work

FINN: Solo, we'll figure it out! We'll use the Force!

HAN: That's not how the Force works--!


Getting a Teacher

KYLO REN: You need a teacher! I can show you the ways of the Force!

יְהוֹשֻׁעַ בֶּן פְּרַחְיָה אוֹמֵר, עֲשֵׂה לְךָ רַב, וּקְנֵה לְךָ חָבֵר, וֶהֱוֵי דָן אֶת כָּל הָאָדָם לְכַף זְכוּת:

Joshua ben Perahiah used to say: "Appoint for thyself a teacher, and acquire for thyself a companion, and judge all men with the scale weighted in his favor."