Struggles and separations / Parashat Toldot
The tragedy and complexity of Esau’s character, as conveyed in a literal reading of the text, is seen as evil because he is perceived as symbolizing the early Christians who lived during the period of the sages.
During the era of the sages, the first batei midrash (houses of Jewish learning) were set up, and those who studied in them were separated by their walls from the public outside. In addition, a hierarchy of students, on the one hand, and lawmakers and interpreters, on the other, was established, and the role of the latter group in deciphering and organizing reality began. This process led to the...
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