Category Archive: Vayikra

May 30

Cancel the Appointment!

Toward the end of the Parsha, the Torah tells us that if one wishes to donate the value of his ‘soul’ or the value of another person’s ‘soul’ to the Temple treasury he can take such a vow. The Torah sets a fixed Shekel amount that the one who made the vow must give towards …

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May 23

Rhythm!

Our Parsha begins with the Mitzvah of Shemitta – the Sabbatical seventh year when it is prohibited to plant or make improvements in gardens and fields the Land of Israel. It is also prohibited to do commerce with what grew wild in the fields. During the Shemitta year; the land is considered ownerless – thus …

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May 16

Launched!

We are currently in the seven-week counting period between Pesach and Shavuos, known as Sefiras HaOmer – the counting of the Omer. Today is the 26th day of the Omer count. The Torah in this week’s portion describes the Mitzvos pertaining to the counting of the Omer. When the Jews entered the Land of Israel …

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May 09

Fill Up!

The Parsha begins with G-d commanding us, Kedoshim Tihiyu – Be Holy! The question is to what degree does G-d expect us to be holy? The Medrash relates, you may think that G-d wants us to be as holy as Himself, therefore the verse concludes, I am G-d. My Holiness is beyond all. So what …

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May 02

Tomorrow is…

This Shabbos, before the Mussaf service, we will bless the new month of Iyar and announce that Rosh Chodesh will be Sunday and Monday. When Rosh Chodesh falls out on a Sunday a special Haftorah which opens with the words, “Tomorrow is the Chodesh,” is read. Before describing what the Haftorah deals with, an introduction …

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Apr 10

Defiance!

This Shabbos is called Shabbos Hagadol – the great Shabbos. Let us examine how this Shabbos got its name. The Talmud explains that on the Shabbos before the Jews left Egypt, each Jew took a male lamb and tied it to their bedposts. When the Egyptians saw this, they asked what they were doing. The …

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Apr 04

Zodiac!

This Shabbos is Rosh Chodesh Nissan, which the Torah calls the first month of the year. Thus our calendar year has two firsts. Rosh Hashanah, which marks the creation of Adam and when G-d judges us for the year, is celebrated in Tishrei – the seventh month of the year. Then there is Nissan, the …

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Mar 28

Who is Arneves!

The Talmud relates that King Ptolemy II forced 72 Jewish sages to translate the written Torah into Greek (The Septuagint). This was the first time the Written Torah was translated into another language and it was Ptolemy’s wish that the nations of the world gain access to our Torah. Ptolemy chose 72 Sages, and without …

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Mar 20

Body and the Soul!

The Hebrew calendar is set up in such a way that the Holiday of Purim – the 14th day of Adar – cannot coincide with Shabbos. However even if Purim would fall on Shabbos – which in fact does happen even today in a walled city like Jerusalem which celebrates Purim a day later on …

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