Daily dose of wisdom, Pesachim 83: breaking bones

The Talmud continues explaining the laws of disposing a Paschal lamb that was contaminated and cannot be eaten.  Our sages ask if we must burn the bones that contain edible marrow, or if we can break the bones and remove the marrow.  There is a prohibition on breaking bones for a Paschal lamb, from “And you shall not break a bone in it” (Exodus 12:46).  However, for an offering that cannot be eaten, perhaps we can break the bones.

There is profound wisdom in this commandment.  One take is that since eating the Passover offering is a Divine command, we don’t want to look like we are motivated instead to fill our stomachs, seeking out every edible part including the marrow.  This reflects on the idea that looking desperate does not look good.  This is especially true if you are pursuing a relationship.

Another reason is given by the Rashbam, who links the prohibition on breaking bones to the rule that the Paschal Lamb was eaten in haste (12:11).  We don’t have time to look for scraps and possible edible piece, we are supposed to focus on the central portion of meat.  We can draw an analogy that if you are looking for scraps of affection or attention in your relationship, then you are not getting what you need.


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