In this week’s parsha, the Jewish people are punished for the false reports 10 of the 12 spies come back with. Their punishment is to wait 40 more years in the desert and to only have their children be able to go into the land they have been promised. I recently read a commentary by Rabbi Sacks on this parsha, from his book, Covenant and … Continue reading Parsha Shlach and Our Own Years in the Desert
The book of Numbers has another name in the Talmud…the book of complainers. It’s a pretty apt description since it isn’t long into this book before the Jewish people begin complaining. They’ve been in the desert a long time, wandering. The exciting miracles and sparks of inspiration have dimmed and are more in the past. They begin to think of Egypt and their memories aren’t … Continue reading The Power of Knowing Your Why
Somewhere in the past blur of weeks, I contracted an eye infection. The cure for this infection is, ironically, stinging, burning drops I must put in every two hours. That’s not fun. Even worse, during this time, I have to wear my glasses, which give me headaches and make me feel dizzy and sick to my stomach. In this case, the cure is almost worse … Continue reading The Ten Unfaithful Spies and an Eye Infection
There are bits and pieces of stories of converts mixed into the Torah. We read the book of Ruth on Shavuos, which is such a moving story. We look to Avraham as the first of the converts in many ways. However, the story that has always fascinated me is the story of the “mixed multitude” that left with the Hebrews from Egypt. We know little … Continue reading The Missing Mixed Multitude?
I’m reading a really good book about Family Purity called “Total Immersion.” All the books I’ve read on the topic previously have been more dry and focused on the “how” of the mitzvah, not the “why” or deeper spiritual dimension and I’m really enjoying this chance to step back and sink deeper into those aspects. One recurring theme is the relationship between us and Hashem. … Continue reading Birthday Cake and Mitzvos
I’m listening to a fantastic shiur, the kind of deep learning that makes my mind ache a little, like a muscle that’s been well-used. I know when I’m learning something that feeds me when it changes how I look at the world around me. Have you ever gone on a long trip away from home and returned and found that home looked a little different? … Continue reading Finding the Holiness…Right Where You Are.
This week’s parshas (it’s another 2fer) are all about holiness. In the wake of Aaron’s son’s unfortunate deaths due to their unrequested offerings, these two parshas talk a lot about Hashem’s expectations of the Jews. There are specific laws for when and how the Kohen Gadol can enter the holy of holies, laws about how the Jews should atone for sins, and a lot of … Continue reading Holiness In a Casual World