Saturday, July 19, 2014

A Taste of Yiddish 4.45

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this week's saying
שטייט אין במדבר י''ג פסוק ל''ג "און דאָרטן האָבּן מיר געזען די פאַלנדיקע ריזן און מיר זענען געווען אין אונדזערע אויגן אַקעגן זיי אַזוי ווי די היישעריקן און אַזוי זענען מיר געווען אין זייערע אויגן'' האָט דער קאָצקער רבּי זצ''ל דערקלערט אַז דאָס איז געווען איינע פון די זינד פון די מרגליםמילא ווי מיר אַליין האָבּן אויסגעזען אין אונדזערע אייגענע אויגן איז איין זאַך אָבּער "און אַזוי האָבּן מיר אויסגעזען אין זייערע אויגןוואָס אַרט עס דיך ווי אַזוי דו קוקסט אויס בּײַ יענעם!

shteyt in bamidbor 13:33 “un dortn hobn mir gezen di falndike rizn un mir zenen geven in undze're oygn a'kegn zey azoy vi di heysherikn un a'zoy zenen mir geven in zey'ere oygn.” hot der kotsker re'be zt”l derklert az dos iz geven ey'ne fun di zind fun di meraglim. mey'le vi mir a'leyn hobn oysgezen in undzere eygene oygn iz eyn zakh, ober “un a'zoy hobn mir oysgezen in zey'ere oygn” vos art es dikh vi a'zoy du kukst oys ba yenem!

the saying actually means
In Numbers 13:33 the verse states “And there we saw the Nephilim (the fallen ones), the sons of Anak (a giant), who come of the Nephilim; and we were in our own eyes as grasshoppers, and so we were in their eyes.” The Kotzker Rebbe commented that this was one of the sins of the Meraglim (spies)*. I can understand that “we were in our own eyes as grasshoppers, we looked small next to them.” But “and so we were in their eyes,” what do you care how you looked like in their eyes!?

translated to Hebrew
כתוב בבמדבר י''ג פסוק ל''גושם ראינו את הנפילים בני ענק מן הנפלים ונהי בעינינו כחגבים וכן היינו בעיניהםאמר רמ''מ מקוצק זצ''ל שזה היה אחד מן החטאים של המרגליםמילא 'ונהי בעינינו כחגביםנוכל להביןאבל 'וכן היינו בעיניהם' - מאי אכפת לך איך שאתה נראה אצל השני!

The Twelve Spies (Meraglim) as recorded in the Book of Numbers, were a group of Israelite chieftains, one from each of the Twelve Tribes, who were dispatched by Moses to scout out the Land of Canaan for 40 days as a future home for the Israelite people, during the time when the Israelites were in the wilderness following their Exodus from Ancient Egypt. The account is found in Numbers 13:1-33.
G-d had promised Abraham that there would be a Promised Land for the nations to come out of his son, Isaac. The land of Canaan which the spies were to explore was the same Promised Land. Moses asked for an assessment of the geographical features of the land, the strength and numbers of the population, the agricultural potential and actual performance of the land, civic organization (whether their cities were like camps or strongholds), and forestry conditions. He also asked them to be positive in their outlook and to return with samples of local produce.

When ten of the twelve spies showed little faith in the doom and gloom report they gave about the land, they were slandering what they believed G-d had promised them. They did not believe that G-d could help them, and the people as a whole were persuaded that it was not possible to take the land. As a result, the entire nation was made to wander in the desert for 40 years, until almost the entire generation of men had died. Joshua and Caleb were the two spies who brought back a good report and believed that G-d would help them succeed. They were the only men from their generation permitted to go into the Promised Land after the time of wandering.

אַ גוטע וואָך  

Chaim Werdyger
Bringing back the Yiddish language

A proverb is a short, generally known sentence of the folk which contains wisdom, truth, morals, and traditional views in a metaphorical, fixed and memorizable form and which is handed down from generation to generation

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