Day 7 of Passover: At Last a Choice

Why is Pesach (Passover) 7 days?  We have the first night seder meal, and then the next day (the first day of Pesach), we leave Egypt.  Done.  Why drag it out? The only thing I can think is that there must be something that happens on the 7th day that is at least as important. Let’s see… according to the Torah, we leave Egypt and travel 3 days and then turn around and back-track for 3 days until we come … Continue reading

Parsha Tzav: The Group Endeavor

The parsha (weekly Torah portion) is called Tzav which is the verb, “To command,” and one of the roots of the word mitzvah (or commandment).  The parsha starts with god telling Moshe (Moses) to command Aharon and his sons on the laws of the olah offering – the olah offering on the flame of the altar all night until morning.  The priests, who are Aharon and his sons, are then told how to deal with the ashes from the altar, … Continue reading

Parsha Vayikra: Am I Guilty Torah?

This week we start the third of the five books of haShem’s (god) words as scribed by Moshe (Moses).  The book, and the parsha (weekly Torah portion) that we read are called vayikra which means, “And he called,” as in, “And he called to Moshe and haShem spoke to him,” which is how our parsha starts. God is calling to Moshe to tell the people about offerings or sacrifices.  First we read that the acceptable animals that a person can … Continue reading

A Meditation for the New Moon

Tuesday starts the Jewish month of Nisan.  This is the month of spring, the month of freedom.  In 2 weeks we celebrate Pesach (Passover), the time we left Egypt and slavery. However, that is not the only thing to celebrate during this month.  According to our tradition, Moshe (Moses) puts up the mishcan (tabernacle) on the first day of Nisan… which just happens to be… Today! The mishcan is a special structure that allows for the infinite creator to be … Continue reading

Parsha (double) Vayakhail-P’kudi: First Things First

This week begins the season of double parshas (weekly Torah portions).  For those of you asking yourselves what I am talking about, let me explain. The calender of the family of Yisrael is lunar based meaning that each month begins with the sighting of the new moon.  Ordinarily, the year has twelve of these months.  However, haShem (god) mentions that the month that includes the holiday of Pesach (Passover) is the month of spring.  So, to keep the month of … Continue reading