In Preparation for Black Friday

Between the shopping days of Chinese Singles’ Day and that of Black Friday, here is an idea from the Portion: the commentators point out that the main difference between Yaacov and Esau was their attitude towards possessions. Esau says about himself: יֶשׁ לִי רָב (I have a lot), whereas Yaacov says: יֶשׁ לִי כֹל (I have everything).

I have a lot: that is, I have many things, and I can have more and more, and it is never enough for me, I will never stop accumulating possessions. Yaacov says: I have everything – everything that I have is everything for me, it is enough for me, because “Who is rich? The one who is happy with his lot”.

The commercials and culture around us try to drag us to a perpetual feeling of “I have a lot”, and I want to buy and accumulate more and more. Every new purchase and every use of my credit card make me feel better, they strengthen my sense of existence. I do not buy only because I need something or because there is a great sale, but because buying is the thing – it is what’s important. Those who are behind the commercials have no interest that we should feel a sense of ‘I have everything’, that we will be happy with our lot, that we will be satisfied with little. It is not in their interest, but it is in ours.
And by the way, after Black Friday, comes Saturday. Shabbat. This is a day that is supposed to make us feel like: I have everything, because everything is ready, and we stop the never ending race for an entire day.

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סיון רהב-מאיר

Sivan Rahav-Meir is a media personality and lecturer. Married to Yedidya, the mother of five. Lives in Jerusalem. She works for Israel TV news, writes a column for Yediot Aharonot newspaper, and hosts a weekly radio show on Galei Zahal (Army Radio). Her lectures on the weekly Torah portion are attended by hundreds and the live broadcast attracts thousands more listeners throughout the world.
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