Our Stories

Torah Talk for Parashat Vayishlach

November 19, 2018 by Sharon Freundel (Community)

In this parasha, Yaakov confronts Eisav, wrestles with a “man” who blesses him by changing his name to Yisrael, loses his wife Rachel in childbirth, and experiences the trauma of the incident with his daughter Deena.

The Torah and the rabbis place great import on the meaning of a name. We first learn of the power of naming from Adam, who is charged by God to name all of the animals. According to Ramban (Nachmanides – 13th Century Spain/Palestine), as each animal passed before him, Adam would discern that animal’s distinctive nature and grant it a name according to its nature. Read more >