Friday, April 15, 2016

Metzorah text message.

Parashat Metzorah (Leper)

You will have leprosy in your houses…
In Rashi’s explanation we can find the essence of Judaism.
“Heb. וְנָתַתִּי, lit. and I will give (leprosy in your houses) This is [good] news for them that lesions of tzara’ath will come upon them, because the Amorites had hidden away treasures of gold inside the walls of their houses during the entire forty years that the Israelites were in the desert, and through the lesion, he will demolish the house (see verses 43-45) and find them. — [Vayikra Rabbah 17:6]”
The essence of Judaism is turning a curse into a blessing.

In memory of my beloved mother and teacher Miriam Rachel bat Israel Itzchak Z"L

Friday, April 8, 2016

Tazria Text message

Parashat Tazria (When a woman conceives)

The Torah speaks in this section mainly about skin diseases.  Skin diseases are usually related to impurity.
All of a sudden in the middle of the description, there is the following verse:
Leviticus 13:13:  “…then the priest will make an examination. If the skin disease has covered the person’s whole body, the priest will declare the infected person clean. If the person has turned entirely white, he is clean.”  If the disease covers the whole body, that person is pure.  If 99% of the body is affected, impure, 100% pure.

There are many interpretations to this difficult verse…
I would like to share a short story. When I was at Haifa University, I had a teacher who, in his first class, told us:  “You can only get 98 points in this class. 100 is God. 99 is the teacher…”
I didn’t like the idea of the 99, but that idea that only God is 100, I loved it!

In memory of my beloved mother and teacher Miriam Rachel bat Israel Itzchak Z"L

Friday, April 1, 2016

Shemini Text message

Parashat Shemini (The Eighth Day)

There are not many places where Moses makes mistakes in the Torah but even though he is a human being, a special one, Moses made mistakes.
Moses got upset with Aaron’s sons and it looks like they were right…
We always try to put some make up on the mistakes of great people to make them look better, but the Torah in this section presents Aaron correcting Moses his brother.
In Leviticus 10:19-20, “Look,” Aaron said to Moses, “today they (Eleazar and Itamar) offered their purification offerings and their entirely burned offerings before the Lord, but these things still happened to me! Would the Lord have approved if I had eaten a purification offering today?” 20 When Moses heard that, he approved (he was satisfied).
Here we see Moses’ greatness.  He not only accepted his mistake, but he first listened to his brother.
How many times we fail not only by accepting that others are right, but we also fail by not even listening to others…

In memory of my beloved mother and teacher Miriam Rachel bat Israel Itzchak Z"L