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Shabbat Tzav (Lev. 6:1-8:36)

This weeks’ portion begins saying “This is the Ritual (Tzav) of burnt offering.”. However, various interpretations give the meaning of tzav as “commandment”, “law” or even “Torah”. One commentator explains that the word “Torah” does not always apply to the 5 books of Moses. It can mean the 5 books plus Talmud. Or all the official holy books together (Torah, Prophets, Writings, etc). Then there’s “the... read more

Shabbat Vayikra (Lev. 1:1-5:26)

Fasten your seatbelts, keep your hands completely inside the ride, hold onto your hats and small children. We are about to begin the gripping, chilling, heart pumping action of Leviticus. Or not. Yeah, I definitely may be off on that one. The fact is that splattering blood is chilling in a Hitchcock movie, but somehow it loses it’s gruesome appeal when it’s done by a priest wearing a bath... read more

VIDEO: Good Shabbos!

Something to help you ease into the mood – a Shabbat-compliant arrangement (all sounds created by human voices, albeit electronically mixed after that) by the group... read more

Velveteen Rabbi’s Passover Haggadah

Once again, the Velveteen Rabbi has updated her Passover Haggadah for the imminent arrival of Pesach 2012. What’s different? According to the good Rabbi: “…I want this edition to be user-friendly for a broad congregational audience, while still retaining the poetry and the beauty which make it my haggadah. So I trimmed it down — 48 pages instead of 82. Of course, I also wound up... read more

Shabbat Vayakhel-Pikudei (Ex. 35:1-40:38)

I had a hard time gathering my wits this week, and couldn’t bring myself to construct an artistic summary of the portion. No matter how hard I hammered the block of wood I call a brain, I couldn’t weave together anything that would mirror my thoughts. I’d sit at my desk for hours, fingers tented and looking for some kind of hook. My ideas seemed to hover just out of reach, cloudy and insubstantial. In the... read more

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