ואתחנן

This week’s parsha continues Moshe’s first speech of D’varim to the Israelites, and includes two momentous features: the Ten Commandments (with very slight alterations from the first time they appear) and the first paragraph of the Shma, though judging by Rashi’s comments it does not seem to hold particular importance in the way it does to Jews today (or Rashi regarded his Torah commentary as being restricted to the text and not to the use parts of the text may have been given in ritual life).  Besides those two sections, it is abundantly clear to me when reading it just how bitter Moshe is that he is unable to enter the land.  The parsha begins with the word Va’etchanan “and I implored” referring to Moshe asking Hashem one last time to be allowed entry into Cana’an.  What really struck me, however, was not that Moshe is bitter, which is understandable, but the extent to which he takes it out on the Israelites.  Time and again he blames them for making Hashem refuse him entry, even though the text makes it clear that it was Moshe’s own actions that led to his fate to be buried outside Cana’an.

Moshe’s bitter speech
A testament to regret
For his lost dreams

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