Tag Archives: purification

Tazria-Metzora (Lev. 12:1 – 15:33)

“Eeewww! Gross!” That’s the typical reaction to the Torah portions Tazria (Lev. 12:1- 13:59) and Metzora (Lev. 14:1-15:33), especially if you’re 12 and have just been told this will be your Bar or Bat Mitzvah portion.  At least this year, … Continue reading

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Kedoshim (Leviticus 19:1 – 20:27)

Last week’s Torah portion, Acharei Mot, was full of instructions for purification by means of atonement, sacrifices, and abstention from forbidden sexual contacts.  Now that everyone’s been purified and prepped, they are ready for the next stage: Holiness. Indeed, this … Continue reading

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Metzora (Lev. 14:1 – 15:33), Shabbat HaGadol

This week’s reading continues the instructions concerning tzara’at.   Once the priest declares a metzora healed, the purification begins so that the outcast can be readmitted into the society.  The priest takes 2 birds, cedar wood, crimson thread, and hyssop; slaughters … Continue reading

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Tazria (Lev. 12:1 – 13:59), Shabbat Rosh Chodesh (Num. 28:9 – 15), Shabbat HaChodesh (Ex. 12:1 – 20)

This week, a Torah triple header: 3 readings, 3 books, 3 scrolls.  In addition to the regular weekly reading, Tazria (Lev. 12:1-13:59), there’s a special reading about prescribed sacrifices (Num. 28:9-15) because it’s Rosh Chodesh, the first of the month, … Continue reading

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Shemini (Lev. 9:1 – 11:47), Shabbat Parah

This week: a stupendous ceremony that ends tragically, clean and unclean animals, and an extra portion about a red-haired young cow. We begin with the ending.  Tomorrow is Shabbat Parah, the third of four Shabbatot before Passover on which we … Continue reading

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Ki Tetse (Deut. 21:10 – 25:19)

First, a few words about the haftarot we’ve been reading, the seven Haftarot of Consolation between Tisha B’Av and Rosh Hashanah.  The 14th c. sage Rabbi David Abudarham described the seven as a dialogue (see Nehama Leibowitz, Studies in Devarim, … Continue reading

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Chukkat (Numbers 19:1 – 22:1)

Have you ever seen an intense movie, or read an engrossing book, where, as you get near the end, it seems that the author loses energy, or gets tired of the story, and just wants to tie things up as … Continue reading

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