Posts in category Torah-Leviticus

B’chukotai (Follow My Laws)

Naso

Leviticus 26:1 to 27:34 As we read the listing of “blessing and curses” this week, we ask: How can this listing apply to a 21st Century world? In addition to providing specific blessings and curses, Torah also tells us why it can apply more today than ever before. In this, the last parsha of Leviticus, […]

B’har (In the mountain)

B'har

Leviticus 25:1 to 26:2 The Sabbatical Year gives the land a rest every seven years. The Jubilee Year proclaims “liberty/freedom” for both land and its people. The text gives us insight into what liberty/freedom means in the Biblical tradition. This is the last of the four parshot given the title of the Holiness Code – […]

Emor (Say)

Emor

Leviticus 21:1 to 24:23 Torah commands us to celebrate several festival holidays. Through the years these festivals have changed significantly to meet the needs of the contemporary times. This week’s text continues the section of Torah known as the Holiness Code. It is composed of a large collection of laws and commandments from God that […]

K’doshim (Holy)

Leviticus 19:1 to 20:27 The Israelite community is told by God to be a “holy people.” But sages through the ages have questioned the meaning and responsibilities of “a holy people.” “The Eternal One spoke to Moses saying: Speak to the whole Israelite community and say to them: You shall be holy, for I, the […]

Acharei Mot (After the death)

Acharei Mot

Leviticus 16:1 to 18:30 Torah presents a list of forbidden sexual offenses. These were composed over 2,500 years ago. Today’s ethics and lifestyles have changed and suggest that this list should be revisited. The two parshot – Acharei Mot, read this week – and K’doshim – read next week – are one of seven pairs […]

M’tzora (Leper)

Naso

Leviticus 14:1 to 15:11 The main topic of this week is a skin disease commonly recognized as leprosy by Biblical commentators and the ritual purity / impurity associated with it. This information seems as if it’s centuries old. But, with a little digging, we find that it is still relevant to the contemporary Jewish community. […]

Tazria (Childbirth)

Tazria

Leviticus 12:1 to 13:59 Ritual impurity can result from many factors as described in Torah. This week’s text describes the symptoms and treatment of a person with a skin disease that results in ritual impurity. This week’s parsha, Tazria, is usually combined with the next, M’tzora, to form a double reading. But, because this is a […]

Sh’mini – Torah In Haiku

Sh'mini

Hasenpfeffer? TREIF … BUT CHOCOLATE COVERED CRICKETS?  POSSIBLY KOSHER — Leviticus 11:2-3,6 These are the creatures that you may eat from among all the land animals: any animal that has true hoofs, with clefts through the hoofs, and that chews the cud, such you may eat … the hare, although it chews the cud, it […]

Sh’mini (Eighth)

Sh'mini

Leviticus 9:1 to 11:47 One of Torah’s most shocking events, the deaths of Aaron’s sons for presenting “alien fire” during the dedication of the Tabernacle, demonstrates the importance of obeying the commandments and laws of God. Back in Exodus the Eternal spoke to Moses about the rituals for the Tabernacle: “You shall make an altar […]

Tzav – Torah in Haiku

Tzav

  SEEKING HOLINESS? … SURROUND YOURSELF WITH PEOPLE … SEEKING HOLINESS —   This week’s haiku was inspired by “The Holy Touch”, Anita Silvert’s post this week on her blog, Jewish Gems. When you associate with people whose outlook on life whose actions and speech find the holiness in life, then you will tend to […]

Tzav (Command)

Tzvav

Leviticus 6:1 to 8:36 The system of sacrificial offerings as a way of communicating with God has been out of practice for nearly two thousand years. Is its replacement – prayer – an effective substitute? “The Eternal One spoke to Moses, saying ‘Command Aaron and his sons thus: This is the ritual of the burnt […]

Vayikra – Torah In Haiku

Vaykkra

  A TINY ALEPH … TEACHES US TO FIND MEANING … IN LIFE’S CHANCE EVENTS —–   The first word of our portion – the first word of the Book of Leviticus – is written with a small aleph as shown in the image accompanying this post. One explanation for this scribal oddity can be […]

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