Author Archives: igplotzk

Toldot (Genesis 25:19 – 28:9)

Isaac, Rebecca, Esau, and Jacob: the prototypical dysfunctional family.  Sibling rivalry, blatant parental favoritism, a breakdown of communication between husband and wife, taking advantage of the infirmity of an old man.  And lots of scheming. This portion should be Isaac’s, … Continue reading

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Chayei Sarah (Genesis 23:1-25:18)

Chayei Sarah (חַיֵּי שָׂרָה) means “life of Sarah.”  The Torah portion actually begins with Sarah’s death at the age of 127.  (Tradition has it that she died of shock, from either horror at the thought that Abraham would sacrifice their … Continue reading

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Vayeira (Genesis 18:1 – 22:24)

(From 2015) As so we continue the demonstrations of “family values” in Genesis.  This week, in Parashat Vayeira, we have instances of duplicity, pimping, seduction, incest, attempted second degree murder, the expulsion of a woman and her son into the wilderness … Continue reading

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Lech L’cha (Genesis 12:1 – 17:27)

Yes, we’re back.  Yes, we had a great time.  Yes, pictures of Venice, Montenegro, and Greece will be posted.  Also, though it’s been several days, my mind is still kind of foggy. (2015 Comments) In grad school, I remember once, … Continue reading

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Noah (Genesis 6:9-11:32)

2016 comments, with some 2015 included: [Noah is pronounced with a guttural h in Hebrew] Last year, I wrote: “This is another of those Bible portions that get whitewashed to be made suitable for children.  Think about it.  All humans, including babies … Continue reading

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Bereishit (Genesis 1:1 – 6:8)

This week’s Torah portion, Bereishit, consists of 146 verses and 1500 years’ worth of foundational stories: The Creation stories; the Garden of Eden; Cain, Abel, and fratricide; and the descendants of Adam down to Noah, who lived from 350 (Enoch, mysteriously … Continue reading

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Shabbat Chol HaMoed Sukkot, Hoshana Rabbah, Shemini Atzeret, and Simchat Torah

Did you know there’s a place on earth where it hasn’t rained for nearly 2 million years? It’s the Dry Valleys in Antarctica.  I’m really tired of rain, and I’m not even talking about Hurricane Florence, just this rainrainrain-teasingbitofsun-rainrain.  The … Continue reading

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