The legend about the three stalks – Part 1

he Festival of Weeks is almost upon us and there’s no better time to tell legends than at the festival of Shavu’ot –שָׁבוּעוֹת . Today we are going to encounter two brothers; the first was really wealthy- עָשִׁיר- and the second was very poor –עָנִי . When harvest time came, the older and the rich brother said to the young and poor brother that if he harvested his great field, gathered the stalks into 100 sheaves and then baked 100 loaves of bread from the grain, then he could then freely return to field after to collect any leftover stalks of grain for himself.

The next morning, the poor brother woke up and went to work. From sunrise until sunset he harvested his brother’s field. By the day’s end, 100 loaves of bread had been baked. The younger brother then happily went back to the field to collect the remaining stalks for himself and his family, but all he found there were three measly, thin stalks, just like the stalks King Pharaoh had in his dream.

The young brother was disappointed; he had expected there would be more left over for him. As he walked home afterwards, he saw a beautiful young girl who wore her hair in a long braid- צַמָּה- and she was using a reed-קְנֵה סוּף- as a flute.

In our next article we shall see what happened to them. The value that we can learn from this part of the story is to never expect too much; the higher our expectations, the higher our chances of disappointment!

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