Earlier this fall I was honored by the invitation to offer some words of Torah as part of the Peace Parsha series at Americans for Peace Now.
You can read my commentary on parashat Toldot at APN: If this is so, then why am I? I'm also archiving it below.
"The children struggled in her womb, and she said, 'If this is so, then why am I?'" -- Genesis 25:22
We read in this week's Torah portion that even in the womb, Rebecca's children Jacob and Esau quarreled. And their perennial struggle brought her to an existential outcry: if this is so, then why am I? If this is the only possibility for my sons, she seems to be saying, then my motherhood -- even my whole existence -- feels called into question. If fighting is all there is, then what's the point?
I suspect that many of us who care deeply about Israel and Palestine have those moments of heartfelt crying-out. If this is so, then why am I? If struggle and violence are inevitable, "then why am I" giving my heart and soul to working toward peace?