Shemot (Exodus): Shemot > Ch 5
Moses and Aaron ask Pharaoh to let the people go to the desert and pray for three days
Moses and Aaron told Pharaoh that G-d said,
'Send out My people, and let them sacrifice to Me in the desert'
. Pharaoh said that he doesn’t know G-d and will not let Israel out.
Pharaoh imposes heavy labor on the people to make them forget ‘false matters’
Pharaoh said "They are lax. Therefore they cry out, saying, 'Let us go and sacrifice to our G-d.' Let the labor fall heavy upon the men and let them work at it, and let them not talk about false matters." Pharaoh commanded the taskmasters to stop giving stubble to the people to make bricks, require the people to find stubble themselves yet keep the brick quotas unchanged.
The officers of the children of Israel were beaten for not meeting the quotas and they complained to Moses and Aaron. So Moses returned to the Lord and said, "O Lord! Why have You harmed this people? Why have You sent me? Since I have come to Pharaoh to speak in Your name, he has harmed this people, and You have not saved Your people."
Research & Analysis
This situation often repeats throughout history, with those in charge imposing heavy labor to make one forget about what really matters to him or her. It’s important to remember what really matters and prevail at it.