Carol has recently been in contact with her mother’s brother, Bernie. Bernie and his wife now live in Los Vegas. Before that they lived on Long Island. I visited their house years and years ago. It was a nice house and they had a pool too. Bernie also had a bug zapper that sat near the pool. Bernie counted the bugs as they flew into the zapper and got zapped. The house was East Coast style, upstairs, downstairs, and dark. Small windows protect against the cold I guess. Now they have a lot of sun in Vegas.
Bernie is pretty religious and when he heard Carol did not have a Hebrew name he gave her one. By what powers he did so, I don’t know. I don’t care either. Maybe the power of an Uncle. That’s enough I think.
Anyway, Carol’s Hebrew name is Chayva which means “life.” I felt left out and told Carol I wanted a Hebrew name too, so Bernie gave me one. I am now Noah which means more or less “laws of humanity.” It’s easier to have a Hebrew name as a gentile like me than it is to have one and be Jewish. Apparently to be worthy of her Hebrew name a Jewish person must fulfill 613 Commandments. That seems like a lot of Commandments to me. I don’t even know how a person could keep track of them. As a gentile to be worthy of a Hebrew name I have only to fulfill the seven Noahide Laws. Which are as follow:
* Idolatry is forbidden. Man is commanded to believe in the One G-d alone and worship only Him.
* Incestuous and adulterous relations are forbidden. Human beings are not sexual objects, nor is pleasure the ultimate goal of life.
* Murder is forbidden. The life of a human being, formed in G-d’s image, is sacred.
* Cursing the name of G-d is forbidden. Besides honoring and respecting G-d, we learn from this precept that our speech must be sanctified, as that is the distinctive sign which separated man from the animals.
* Theft is forbidden. The world is not ours to do with as we please.
* Eating the flesh of a living animal is forbidden. This teaches us to be sensitive to cruelty to animals. (This was commanded to Noah for the first time along with the permission of eating meat. The rest were already given to Adam in the Garden of Eden.)
· Mankind is commanded to establish courts of justice and a just social order to enforce the first six laws and enact any other useful laws or customs
Some of these are pretty easy. No incest is pretty easy since I don’t have anybody to commit incest with. I haven’t murdered—and don’t plan to—anybody. Also I don’t steal. But some of the others might give me trouble, especially the one about taking His name in vain. But I suppose I could forgo His name and just say Jesus Christ, Sweet Jesus, or Jesus H. Christ when I am pissed. I don’t think Jewish people would mind.