Monday, January 31, 2011

Keeping the Sabbath Holy-Part Eins

Boy, this weekend was busy. My in-laws were from out of town for HB's 1st birthday, and my house was turned into a decent abode, then to disaster, and again into a decent dwelling place.

I'm having a rough day. HB is flat lining on the charts, again. That boy is a picky eater as much as I try. The pedi wants us to start adding heavy cream to any purees we make, butter, and to start cow's milk with Carnation instant breakfast mixed in. She said that it may sound counter intuitive for an adult, but we need to feed him high calorie foods. So this afternoon I gave him french fries, as much as I cringed about it. I also added heavy cream to some soup. He's not too fond of cow's milk. It's frustrating because I'm at my wits end about how to fatten him up. Honestly, if this doesn't work, then the pedi has to do something or figure out why he's so skinny. I can't force feed him lard. It just seems ridiculous. She did say that he looked orange again, but I told her I'm just trying to get him to eat and if that means he's orange then oh, well. Anybody have any ideas about how to fatten up a child? I know he doesn't eat enough, but he's just refusing to eat foods. We try to give him ones he'll eat, but then he doesn't eat nearly enough of it. He likes cake and icecream. Is it a bad idea to feed him that everyday for a month?

Okay...back to the Sabbath. This part I'm going to discuss the Sabbath as described from a Jewish point of view. The second part is about how this ties in with the Lord's Day, or Sunday.

For those of you who don't know, the Sabbath is not Sunday. The Sabbath is Saturday. The Lord's Day is Sunday. The Lord's Day is a Christian thing which the Sabbath customs have been transferred too. I'll explain what I mean in the next part, but it suffices to say that in order to understand the Lord's Day you need to understand the Sabbath.

Of all the Jewish laws, the Sabbath is one that's discussed often and with great clarity. The Sabbath refers to both a day of the week as well as a year and a point in the seventh month. Let's discuss the year and the month first and then the day, since the Sabbath year or month isn't celebrated in Catholic (and for that matter the vast majority of Christian) circles.

According to Exodus and Leviticus, on the seventh year, you are to let your fields, vineyards, and olive groves lay fallow (meaning don't sow or anything) so that the poor and wild beasts may glean from it. After seven years of service, slaves may be allowed to be free unless they choose to remain slaves for the rest of their lives. In Leviticus, on the first day of the seventh month, the Israelites were to present a food offering to the Lord, to not work, and to have a sacred assembly complete with trumpet blasts. Similarly, on the fifteenth day of the seventh month the first day of that week is a Sabbath rest and so is the eighth day. This is after the crops have been gathered.

Now for the Sabbath day, it was punishable by death to not keep the Sabbath. A person, slave or citizen, and all beasts of burden were not allowed to work. The Sabbath calls you to not cook "bake what you want to bake, boil what you want to boil and save whatever is rest and keep it until morning." In Exodus, you're not allowed to even light a fire. You're also not allowed to go outside your house.

I've looked up additional information on what Jews today consider to be "work" since obviously a Rabbi "works" on the Sabbath at Temple. The word "work" is not the same in the sense of a job but rather the physical. Here is a list of what an observant Jew today does not do on the Sabbath, which starts sundown Friday through sundown Saturday. This list is the 39 categories of melakhah.

  1. Sowing
  2. Plowing
  3. Reaping
  4. Binding sheaves
  5. Threshing
  6. Winnowing
  7. Selecting
  8. Grinding
  9. Sifting
  10. Kneading
  11. Baking
  12. Shearing wool
  13. Washing wool
  14. Beating wool
  15. Dyeing wool
  16. Spinning
  17. Weaving
  18. Making two loops
  19. Weaving two threads
  20. Separating two threads
  21. Tying
  22. Untying
  23. Sewing two stitches
  24. Tearing
  25. Trapping
  26. Slaughtering
  27. Flaying
  28. Salting meat
  29. Curing hide
  30. Scraping hide
  31. Cutting hide up
  32. Writing two letters
  33. Erasing two letters
  34. Building
  35. Tearing a building down
  36. Extinguishing a fire
  37. Kindling a fire
  38. Hitting with a hammer
  39. Taking an object from the private domain to the public, or transporting an object in the public domain.
Additionally, Jews will not handle objects that are used for the above purposes such as a hammer or a pencil unless it is to move it. They also will not use electricity because it is considered to be like lighting a fire. Hence some Jews simply leave the lights on rather than flipping on a light switch or unscrewing the light bulb in the fridge. Jews also do not buy, sell, trade, or travel on Sabbath. They also don't ride in automobiles on the Sabbath since it's combustible like fire. Although, you can do all these things if it is necessary to save a life like using a defibrillator (electricity) to re-start someone's heart. Meals are slow cooked and are usually stews plus the Sabbath bread, which is meant to be a reminder of the manna from Heaven.

Not all Jews agree about these observances. Some Jews have timers which will shut off electricity as needed, but some think that's still violating the Sabbath. And some groups like Reform Jews believe that some of these things like writing can be done as long as it enhances what Sabbath is about, rest and the study of the Torah.

The next post I will discuss the Lord's Day, how that came about, how it ties in to the Jewish observances of the Sabbath, what the Catechism says about the Lord's Day, and some ways that we can observe the Lord's Day using Sabbath traditions.

1 comment:

  1. *hugs*

    We were told o add butter to Kalila's foods, not that she really had a problem. Have you tried avocado? Good healthy fat there. You mentioned purees, have you tried the same foods in textures or finger foods? Some kids would rather feed themselves. Zavier (granted we encouraged it so horrid example) refuses to take food from anyone else but himself. Freeze the purees into a popsickle (milk too) for a "treat". And keep as calm as possible, if he senses stress over the food issue that could push him farther with not wanting too. On the other hand, if he's just a small kid & meeting milestones (I'm gonna assume there's an issue though since the pedi is making such a big deal out of gaining though, I hope not but I get it if there is) then all those things might not do a thing.

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I love to read your thoughts. Thanks for sharing!