In Vayak’heil-P’kudei, we see that God was so pleased with the Israelites’ sacred space (the Tabernacle) that God’s own presence descended upon them as they wandered through the desert.
What is the Jewish approach to anger? How do we deal with it in a way that’s healthy? This week, Rabbi Rick Jacobs explores Parashah Ki Tisa and explores God’s anger toward the Israelites for their idolatry as well as the impact that our own anger can have on ourselves.
Parashat Sh'mini tells of the deaths of two men who are though to have been punished for the sin was innovation - but today, don't we look at innovation as a positive thing?
I’ve never had great knees, but this was a bit much. At 32 years old, I was limping around, struggling to go up and down stairs, and just feeling terrible about it. Thankfully, surgery and physical therapy helped and I have long since recovered. The most important lesson I learned from my bad knees is one that I see reflected in this week’s Torah portion. Parashat Tazria-M’tzora teaches us about our physicality; its focus is on the skin, hair, fluids, and organs that make up our bodies. We learn how out of our control those things can be and we gain some insight into our relationships with those entrusted with our care.
At its best, the Torah can lift up humanity, reminding us of our place in the continually unfolding story of God’s Creation of the world and our role in the hopeful journey toward freedom. At its worst, it can serve as a tool for domination, oppression, hatred, and all that is base and vile within the human soul. As a gay man, I approached this week’s Torah portion, Acharei Mot-K'doshim, with a fair amount of trepidation.