Category Archives: Uncategorized

Bo (Exodus 10:1 – 13:16)

Seven plagues down, three to go.  Then it’s time to leave Egypt. For the next three weeks, we’ll be reading heavy-duty, seminal sections of the Torah: The Exodus, the splitting of the sea, and the giving of the Ten Commandments.  … Continue reading

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Va’era (Exodus 6:2-9:35)

Sources: 2016, 2013, 2012 comments on Va’era. This week, we more or less start over.  Va’era makes last week’s story of the first encounters of Moses and Aaron with the Hebrews and Pharaoh seem like a TV pilot.  The basic elements were … Continue reading

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Shemot (1:1 – 6:1)

It’s only January 4, and I’ve already had enough of snow, ice, wind, daily highs below 20⁰F, slippery roads, and car mishaps (I’m fine, the car isn’t, but it’s drivable).  To think that, at this time 2 years ago, I … Continue reading

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Vayekhi (Genesis 47:28 – 50:26)

Is Joseph in ancient Egypt like a Jew in 21st century America?  He is successful, respected, even publicly honored, and moves freely in Pharaoh’s inner circle.  Yet he is still a Hebrew, and thus “outside”.  His brothers are kept geographically … Continue reading

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Vayigash (Genesis 44:18 – 47:27)

We have reached the climax of the Joseph story.  Judah eloquently pleads to Joseph on Benjamin’s behalf, emphasizing the pain his remaining in Egypt would cause his father and offering himself as a substitute slave.  At this, Joseph reveals his … Continue reading

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Miketz (Gen. 41:1 – 44:17), 4th day of Chanukah (Num. 7:30-35)

We know from the Joseph story that repetition is a sign of a dream’s significance.  I have had some classic recurring dreams myself; e.g., it’s the end of the semester and I have done absolutely none of the course work, … Continue reading

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Vayeishev (Genesis 37:1 – 40:23)

Why Joseph? Though this week’s portion starts out, “And Jacob settled in the land of his father’s sojournings, in the land of Canaan” Joseph immediately takes center stage.  Except for the story of Judah and Tamar (the purpose of which … Continue reading

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