Monthly archives for March, 2014

Tazria – Torah In Haiku

Tazria – Torah In Haiku

Is bald beautiful? According to the Torah A bald man is “pure” Leviticus 13:40-42 “If a man loses the hair of his head and become bald, he is pure. If he loses the hair on the front part of his head and becomes bald at the forehead, he is pure.” Of course, the Torah is […]

Tazrai – (Woman at Childbirth)

Leviticus 12: 1 to 13:59  Leviticus contains laws affecting the Israelites from birth to death… ranging from dietary rules to proper business relations. This week, the focus is on the treatment of new mothers and certain skin diseases. All these laws help shape the community and create a special relationship between the people and their […]

Sh’mini – Torah in Haiku

“Fire from before G-d …” Consumes the sacrifices … G-d’s glory revealed ——-   A “strange fire” offered … By Nadav and Abihu … What did that reveal? ——–   “Fire from before G-d …” Consumes the sons of Aaron … G-d’s anger revealed? ———– In the span of three verses, we read about three […]

Sh’mini (Eighth)

Sh’mini – (Eighth) – Leviticus 9:1 to 11:47 When multiple subjects are presented in a single parsha, they almost always have a connection. This week two topics are presented: First – The eighth day of the Tabernacle’s dedication … a happy occasion, until the death of Aaron’s two oldest sons! Second – The dietary laws. I […]

Shabbat Zachor / Purim – Torah ...

Purim scroll and mask

It’s Shabbat Zachor … We remember Amalek … Haman’s ancestor ——- This week is Shabbat Zachor (Shabbat of Remembrance), one of the special Shabbatot leading up to Passover. In addition to the regular Torah portion (Tzav) we conclude with a maftir reading, Deuteronomy 25:17-19. These verses tell us to do something difficult – remember what […]

Tzvav (Command)

Tzvav (Command)

 Tzvav – Leviticus 6:1 to 8:36 The practice of sacrificial offerings ended with the destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem. But if we examine many of our contemporary traditions, we see that the concept of sacrificial offerings is still very relevant today. “The Eternal One spoke to Moses, saying: Command Aaron and his sons thus:” […]

Vayikra – Torah in Haiku

Finders - Keepers

Finders keepers? No! … Something found must be returned … Don’t lie about it. ——— After several chapters of excruciating detail about how sacrifices are to be made, this week’s portion ends (Lev 5:20-26) with some commandments concerning dishonesty.  These include … “If a person sins and commits an appropriation offense against G-d … having found […]

Vayikra (And He – God – c...

Vayikra (And He – God – called)

Vayikra -Leviticus 1:1 to 5:26 In Vayikra we are given instructions about the types of animal sacrifices that should be made to the Tabernacle. Through this act of sacrifice the Israelites were brought closer to God. Today, even though we don’t sacrifice animals, we still seek a closeness to God through attendance at worship services, […]

P’kudei – Torah in Haiku

P’kudei – Torah in Haiku

A mishkan audit … All done according to GAAP*  … Not a detail missed ——— P’kudei includes yet another detailed explanation of all the work done to complete the Tabernacle. But it begins (Ex 38:21-31) with an accounting of how much gold, silver and copper was collected from the people and how that material was […]

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