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Anyone who opens the Talmud will see commentary written by Rabbi Shlomo Yitzchaki, better known as Rashi. In this episode we explore who Rashi was and why his writing has been considered a “guiding light” through the centuries.

The First Crusade was a dark time when non-Christians faced the choice of conversion or death. Born in 1040 in France, Rashi knew from a young age that he wanted to be a guiding light for the Jewish people. After learning from the leading sages of the time, Rashi became a vintner, joined the rabbinical court, and then founded his own yeshiva at the age of 30, where he began to write his commentary.

Rashi wrote a “simple” meaning of the text, making the Talmud more accessible for all readers. Although he died before he could complete his work, thanks to his daughters and their families, Rashi’s legacy has survived and prospered. His wisdom has guided Jews from the Dark Ages to today.

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About The Jewish Story: Understand three thousand years of Jewish history in these short videos based on the book Letters to Auntie Fori: The 5,000-Year History of the Jewish People and Their Faith by the renowned historian Sir Martin Gilbert. Learn the Jewish story from the ancient Israelites of the Bible to Hellenization, the Jews of the Middle Ages to modern day, and more.

About Unpacked: We provide nuanced insights by unpacking all things Jewish. People are complex and complicated — yet we’re constantly being pushed to oversimplify our world. At Unpacked we know that being complex makes us more interesting. Because of this, we break the world down with nuance and insight to drive your curiosity and challenge your thinking.

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