Quotes and Readings of the Day


Today's Torah Reading
previous next Genesis 34:1-35:7

Now Dinah, the daughter whom Leah had borne to Jacob, went out to visit the daughters of the land. Shechem son of Hamor the Hivite, chief of the country, saw her, and took her and lay with her by force. Being strongly drawn to Dinah daughter of Jacob, and in love with the maiden, he spoke to the maiden tenderly. So Shechem said to his father Hamor, "Get me this girl as a wife."

Jacob heard that he had defiled his daughter Dinah; but since his sons were in the field with his cattle, Jacob kept silent until they came home. Then Shechem's father Hamor came out to Jacob to speak to him. Meanwhile Jacob's sons, having heard the news, came in from the field. The men were distressed and very angry, because he had committed an outrage in Israel by lying with Jacob's daughter--a thing not to be done.

And Hamor spoke with them, saying, "My son Shechem longs for your daughter. Please give her to him in marriage. Intermarry with us: give your daughters to us, and take our daughters for yourselves: You will dwell among us, and the land will be open before you; settle, move about, and acquire holdings in it."

Then Shechem said to her father and brothers, "Do me this favor, and I will pay whatever you tell me. Ask of me a bride-price ever so high, as well as gifts, and I will pay what you tell me; only give me the maiden for a wife."

Jacob's sons answered Shechem and his father Hamor--speaking with guile because he had defiled their sister Dinah--and said to them, "We cannot do this thing, to give our sister to a man who is uncircumcised, for that is a disgrace among us. Only on this condition will we agree with you; that you will become like us in that every male among you is circumcised. Then we will give our daughters to you and take your daughters to ourselves; and we will dwell among you and become as one kindred. But if you will not listen to us and become circumcised, we will take our daughter and go."

Their words pleased Hamor and Hamor's son Shechem. And the youth lost no time in doing the thing, for he wanted Jacob's daughter. Now he was the most respected in his father's house. So Hamor and his son Shechem went to the public place of their town and spoke to their fellow townsmen, saying, "These people are our friends; let them settle in the land and move about in it, for the land is large enough for them; we will take their daughters to ourselves as wives and give our daughters to them. But only on this condition will the men agree with us to dwell among us and be as one kindred: that all our males become circumcised as they are circumcised. Their cattle and substance and all their beasts will be ours, if we only agree to their terms, so that they will settle among us." All who went out of the gate of his town heeded Hamor and his son Shechem, and all males, all those who went out of the gate of his town, were circumcised.

On the third day, when they were in pain, Simeon and Levi, two of Jacob's sons, brothers of Dinah, took each his sword, came upon the city unmolested, and slew all the males. They put Hamor and his son Shechem to the sword, took Dinah out of Shechem's house, and went away. The other sons of Jacob came upon the slain and plundered the town, because their sister had been defiled. They seized their flocks and herds and asses, all that was inside the town and outside; all their wealth, all their children, and their wives, all that was in the houses, they took as captives and booty. Jacob said to Simeon and Levi, "You have brought trouble on me, making me odious among the inhabitants of the land, the Canaanites and the Perizzites; my men are few in number, so that if they unite against me and attack me, I and my house will be destroyed." But they answered, "Should our sister be treated like a whore?"

God said to Jacob, "Arise, go up to Bethel and remain there; and build an altar there to the God who appeared to you when you were fleeing from your brother Esau." So Jacob said to his household and to all who were with him, "Rid yourselves of the alien gods in your midst, purify yourselves, and change your clothes. Come, let us go up to Bethel, and I will build an altar there to the God who answered me when I was in distress and who has been with me wherever I have gone." They gave to Jacob all the alien gods that they had, and the rings that were in their ears, and Jacob buried them under the terebinth that was near Shechem. As they set out, a terror from God fell on the cities round about, so that they did not pursue the sons of Jacob.

Thus Jacob came to Luz--that is, Bethel--in the land of Canaan, he and all the people who were with him. There he built an altar and named the site El-bethel, for it was there that God had revealed Himself to him when he was fleeing from his brother.


From Parshat VaYishlach. From THE TANAKH: The New JPS Translation According to the Traditional Hebrew Text. Copyright 1985 by the Jewish Publication Society. Used by permission.

Angel Quote of the Day

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Everything we call a trial, a sorrow, or a duty; believe me, that Angel’s hand is there, and the wonder of an overshadowing presence. Our joys too: be not content with them as joys. They too conceal diviner gifts.

-Fra Giovanni

From "Angels Around Us." Compiled by Karen Maguire. Reprinted by arrangement with Andrews McMeel Publishing.

TAGS: Angel Quote, Angels, Sorrow, Diviner Gifts, Trial, Overshadowing Presence, Duty, Joys, Overshadowing, Hand, Fra Giovanni

Buddhist Quote of the Day

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Empty and calm and devoid of self Is the nature of all things. No individual being In reality exists. There is no end or beginning, Nor any middle course. All is an illusion, As in a vision or a dream. All beings in the world Are beyond the realm of words. Their ultimate nature, pure and true, Is like the infinity of space.


From "The Pocket Buddha Reader," edited by Anne Bancroft, 2001. Reprinted by arrangement with Shambhala Publications, Boston, www.shambhala.com.

My Son, the Dalai Lama

TAGS: Buddhism, Buddhist Quote, Nature, Nature O, Devoid, Calm, Vision, Space, Pure

Celebrity Quote of the Day

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The greatest glory never comes from falling, but from rising each time you fall.

-Clay Aiken

TAGS: Entertainment Quote, Celebrities, Music, Spiritual, Celebrity Spirituality, Entertainment, Failure, Glory

Christian Quote of the Day

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Christianity can be condensed into four words: Admit, Submit, Commit and Transmit.

-Samuel Wilberforce

TAGS: Bible, Christian Quote, Christianity

Eco-Tip of the Day

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Fix leaking faucets or shower heads whenever possible. That dripping water can really add up over the course of a year.

TAGS: Eco Tips

Emotional Health Quote of the Day

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Pain is inevitable. Suffering is optional.

-M. Kathleen Casey

TAGS: Inspiration Quote, Suffering, Pain, Optional, Inevitable, Attitude, Strength

Evangelical Quote of the Day

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The Gospel leaves men, unless upon extraordinary occasions, their names, their reputations, their wealth and honors, if lawfully obtained and possessed; but the league that is between the mind and these things in all natural men must be broken. They must be no longer looked upon as the chiefest good or in the place thereof.

-John Owen

TAGS: Evangelical, Evangelical Quote, Christianity

Health Quote of the Day

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There are only two ways to live your life. One is as though nothing is a miracle. The other is as though everything is a miracle.

-Albert Einstein

TAGS: Emotional Health Quote, Health Quote

Hindu Quote of the Day

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If men are disposed to spread the faults of friends, What deadly harm might they do to strangers?

Tirukkural 188

Excerpted from the Tirukkural, translated by Satguru Sivaya Subramuniyaswami. Copyright Himalayan Academy Publications, www.himalayanacademy.com.

TAGS: Tirukkural, Hindu Quote, Hinduism, Tirukkal

Holistic Living Quote of the Day

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If we examine every stage of our lives, we find that from our first breath to our last we are under the constraint of circumstances. And yet we still possess the greatest of all freedoms, the power of developing our innermost selves in harmony with the moral order of the Universe, and so winning peace at heart whatever obstacles we meet.

-Johann Wolfgang von Goethe

TAGS: Glow, Holistic Living Quote, Spirituality, Holistic Living

Inspiration Quote of the Day

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Forgiveness means giving up all hope of a better past.

-Landrum Bolling

TAGS: Inspiration Quote, Forgiveness Means, Memory, Landrum Bolling

Judaism Quote of the Day

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Judaism has no future without adherence to the commandments and without belief in miracles and prophecy.

-S.D. Luzzatto, "Igrot Shadal"

Reprinted with permission from 'A Treasury of Jewish Quotations,' edited by Joseph L. Baron, Jason Aronson Inc.

TAGS: Judaism, Jewish Quote

Muslim Quote of the Day

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Your worst enemy lies between your two ribs.

-Saying of the Prophet Muhammad in Khanaqahi: Guzida

From "The Wisdom of Sufism," compiled by Leonard Lewisohn. (c) 2001. Reprinted by arrangement with Oneworld Publications, Oxford, www.oneworld-publications.com.

TAGS: Islam, Muslim Quote, Muslim

Norris Chumley Tip of the Day

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Overwhelmed? Join the club! When I'm feeling stressed about how much I need to do, I try to remember to thank God for my life's complications. After all, if we were truly finished and had nothing to do, just think how boring life would be: no passion, purpose, or zest. That helps put things into perspective, but what about RIGHT NOW? Here's what I do: I try not to do everything all at once anymore. I pick the most important things. And then I break tasks down into little, bitty, manageable parts. Then I tackle them full force, asking for God's help in the process. Most importantly, I allow myself to feel good about little, bitty accomplishments, instead of nagging at myself about all I didn’t get done. I rest when the day is done. I no longer work incessantly into the night, as I did when I was younger. I take time to be with my family and friends. I sleep at least 7-8 hours every night. Somehow, the work gets done, and God only hands me as much as I can do, and no more.

-Norris Chumley

TAGS: Weight Loss

Relationship Quote of the Day

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For one human being to love another: that is perhaps the most difficult of our tasks; the ultimate, the last test and proof, the work for which all other work is but preparation.

-Rainer Maria Rilke

TAGS: Relationships, Relationship Quotes

December 11, 2008
May We Feel Compassion
Beliefnet member lgalexander
May each of us find our true path and learn from our mistakes (karma) and accept each other's evolutionary pathway and not feel, show, or express disapproval with the choices the other makes.

May we feel compassion instead of hatred, love instead of anger, and an acceptance not only of others but of ourselves as well. May each of us do all of the above in a mindful way.