Spock’s Vulcan salute… is Jewish?

Spock’s Vulcan salute… is Jewish?

Live Long and Prosper

Then the Lord spoke to Moses, saying, “Speak to Aaron and to his sons, saying, ‘Thus you shall bless the sons of Israel. You shall say to them: The Lord bless you, and keep you; The Lord make His face shine on you, and be gracious to you; The Lord lift up His countenance on you, and give you peace.’ So they shall invoke My name on the sons of Israel, and I then will bless them.”

-Aaron’s Benediction [Numbers 6:22-27]

The first time I saw Rabbi Darryl perform the Aaronic Benediction to close out a Saturday Shabbat service, with his arms outstretched and his hands… his hands in an all too familiar pose, I knew.

I knew that hand gesture! He too must be a fellow “Trekkie“. But I later learnt that it was much more than that. So much more that it followed me to the core of who I am, and who I continue to become as each day passes.

And no, not a Vulcanian from the planet Vulcan…

Besides, I have much too much emotion to be race-worthy. Ahhhh, but I digress. The actor, Leonard Nimoy did bring his Jewish roots to Mr. Spock, a character he portrayed in the Star Trek television and movie franchises. And to bring you up to speed, in case you’ve lived your life thus far under a rock or void of any media exposure, Star Trek is an American sci-fi and home entertainment franchise based on the tv series developed by Gene Roddenberry.

Nimoy accounts (and I’ve included one of his many interviews on the subject in the video below), that he felt his character, Spock, needed a distinct way of greeting people. As humans, we shake hands, or in the military we salute, some cultures bow… so the Vulcan’s needed something as well. Enter the now famous Vulcan salute… that actually came to him from a synagogue, whilst growing up in Massachusetts!

I’ve always been very proud of my Jewish heritage, and any time I find others that share in my enthusiasm… especially to the degree that they mirror a character they’re portraying to include aspects of our faith… well, I’m overwhelmed with gratitude. “Give thanks to the LORD, for he is good.” [Psalm 136:1]. Am I right?

So, now you know.
My hope for you this week?

Smile more than you cry, give more than you take and love more than you hate.

Shalom aleikhem (peace be upon you).
Stephen J. Rosen

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