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Jewish Humane Education Kit
Lesson III: Backup Material Biblical Stories





Backup Material: Contents

Lesson I Backup

Lesson II Backup

Lesson III Backup

Lesson IV Backup

Lesson V & VI Backup

Lesson VII Backup

Lesson VIII Backup

Lesson IX Backup



Judaism & Animals





Judaism recognizes that animals experience emotional pain, and we are forbidden to inflict it.



Rabbi Judah the Prince

Rabbi Judah the Prince was the head of the Jewish community of Eretz Israel in the first century. One day while he was out walking, a calf escaped from a wagon bound for the slaughterhouse. The calf tried to hide under Rabbi Judah's coat, moaning with fear. Rabbi Judah pushed the calf away saying, "Go away — this is what you were created for!" Because of his lack of compassion for the frightened calf, Rabbi Judah was struck with a painful toothache from which he suffered for thirteen years.


One day while studying at home, Rabbi Judah noticed that his daughter was about to kill a family of weasels that she had discovered in a corner. He told her to let the animals live because one should show compassion to animals just as God does. He quoted to her from the Psalms: "God is merciful to all his creatures" (Psalms 145:9).


Because he had saved the animals, Rabbi Judah's painful toothache disappeared.



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