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Lech L’cha (Go to yourself)

Genesis 12:1 to 17:27 This text introduces Abram – or Abraham as he is called later. Torah then details the life, successes, and beliefs of Abram after his direct contact with the Eternal. “Go to yourself’” – This seems like an unusual combination of words. How can I go to myself?…. I’m with me all […]

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Noach (Noah)

Genesis 6:9 to 11:32 The stories of Noah and the Tower of Babel document the corruption and evil that had taken over the earth. This week’s text tells of God’s response. The Torah tells us that “the earth became corrupt before God, the earth was filled with violence, and God saw how corrupted the earth […]

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B’reishit (In the beginning)

Genesis 1:1 to 6:8 In the world God created was a Garden of Eden in which a Tree of All Knowledge was planted. When the fruit of this tree was eaten, was the result a punishment or reward? And now we go back to the beginning…. In six days God created the universe, our solar […]

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V’zot Hab’rachah (And this is the blessing)

Deuteronomy 33:1 to 34:12 The last chapters of Torah relate Moses’ blessing to the people and tell of his death. (Picture to right -Simhat Torah Flag – France, 1930) This week we are celebrating Sukkot. During this seven day celebration, each day has its own reading. The text for Saturday, October 22 is Deuteronomy 14:22 […]

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Haazinu (Give ear … Listen)

Deuteronomy 32:1-52 Moses looks at the traits of the Israelites and predicts a future…. In a recent book by author Marjorie Ingall she looks at today’s Jews and sees a different future. This week’s reading, often called the Song of Moses, takes the form of a “song” or poem presented by Moses to the Israelites. […]

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Vayeilech (And he went)

Deuteronomy 31:1-30 In this week’s Torah reading Moses presents an idea that is designed to both establish faith in God and bring a knowledge of the law to the Israelites. “Moses went and spoke these things to all Israel…” (Deut.31:1) These are the opening words of the final address to the Israelites before they enter the […]

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Nitzavim (Standing)

Deuteronomy 29:9 to 30:20 For the people who have turned away from God, Torah provides the process of Teshuvah – return to God – The process can apply to both the nation of Israel and the individual Jew. This week’s portion is always read the week before Rosh Hashanah. It features an extensive listing of […]

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Ki Tavo (When you enter)

Deuteronomy 26:1 to 29:8 In concluding his Third Discourse to the Israelites, Moses tells them to hear and pay attention to his words. Rabbi Kook extends this command to a discussion of how to best study Torah. In this week’s text, Moses is concluding his third discourse to the people before they enter the Promised […]

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All Torah quotations appear in Blue type and are from The Torah – A Modern Commentary; Gunther Plaut, Editor; Revised Edition

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