Wednesday, October 10, 2012

A Stranger Will Not Understand

I heard the following story the other day:

A gentile tourist from Germany was strolling down the streets of Jerusalem on the night after Simchat Torah. He heard loud music ringing out from one of the buildings. Curious, he made his way inside the building, which just happened to be a Yeshivah, and wandered about the corridors until he found the source of the music that he had heard. Inside a large room, which happened to be the Beit Midrash, a band was playing, and scores of Jewish men were dancing and singing joyously.

The curious tourist, bareheaded and sporting several tattoos, stuck out like the proverbial sore thumb. He approached a bespectacled middle aged Jew who was standing on the side of the room and asked him, "What's going on here?"

"People are dancing," he answered him in an Israeli accent.

"I can see that people are dancing," the tourist answered, clearly frustrated from receiving such an obvious answer. "Why are they dancing?" he continued to inquire.

"Well, we just finished reading a book," the Israeli answered him.

The tourist from Germany was puzzled and coldly commented, "I've finished many books and never danced about it. What do you do when you stop dancing?"

"We start to read the book again," came the answer from the Jew. Then he added, "We've been reading this book for over three thousand years!"

"Well that sounds pretty boring!" the German declared.

The Israeli muttered to himself in Hebrew, "Zar Lo Yavin." (A stranger will not understand).
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