Author Archives: igplotzk

Devarim (Deuteronomy 1:1-3:22), Shabbat Chazon, Tisha B’Av

We are now starting the fifth and final book of the Torah, Deuteronomy, from the Greek, Deuteronomion, literally “second law”.  In Hebrew, it is known as Devarim, דברים, “words.”  Words are such slippery things.  This past week, we were told that … Continue reading

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Mattot-Masei (Numbers 30:2- 36:13)

My eyesight is currently very asymmetrical and not up to par for extended close work. I expected to be through with all that on Thursday.  But it’s not to be, because my second cataract surgery unexpectedly had to be postponed … Continue reading

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Pinchas (Numbers 25:10-30:1)

Do Pinchas and our current president have any characteristics in common, such as  operating outside regular channels and being chosen by God?   This idea came up last week at services and was relayed to me by my husband (I was … Continue reading

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Balak (Numbers 22:2 – 25:9)

The comments below were first posted July 4, 2014. IGP While looking for this week’s jokes, I saw a description of Balak, King of Moab, as “a few noodles short of a kugel.”  Not very bright.  He’s in a panic after … Continue reading

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Chukkat (Numbers 19:1 – 22:1)

This portion is only 87 verses long but covers close to 38 years, at the end of which the Israelites are encamped in the plains of Moab, on the bank of the Jordan, opposite Jericho.  Yet we learn very little … Continue reading

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Korach (Numbers 16:1 – 18:32)

I have just returned from vacation.  Virginia Beach.  Just a few days, but enough for my brain to switch to low power, so I decided to repeat a TPH on demagoguery for Korach, which I thought I’d written last year, … Continue reading

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Shelach (Num. 13:1 – 15:4)

Spies.  Surveillance.  Sanctioned and unsanctioned.  I took a course at Osher this spring on the workings of U.S. intelligence agencies.  It was given by a retired CIA operative.  I learned that the CIA is supposed to just gather intelligence, not … Continue reading

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