Parsha Trumah: A Torah on the Infinite within the Finite

The name of this week’s parsha (Torah portion) is Trumah.  I received a request (hi mom 🙂 ) to include the name of the weekly parsha, so there it is. The parshas are named from the first significant word in them. The word Trumah has as its root the word Rom, which means to raise up and is the word used to designate certain tithes that only the priests (the cohanim in Hebrew) and their families can eat.  Or, in … Continue reading

Parsha Mishpatim: Torah Beyond the Words

This week we read a parsha (weekly Torah portion) called Mishpatim which means sentences in Hebrew.  The word can be used, just like the English word, for both a sentence like the one you are reading, or for what a judge pronounces. In the parsha it is used in the latter way, for the parsha Mishpatim is almost all about laws concerning how to live.  First we read about how to treat a Hebrew slave.  We then read of laws … Continue reading

Parsha Yitro: A Torah on Advice

What an exciting parsha (Torah portion) we have.  It includes haShem (god) actually talking to us.  Imagine being in a group of 600,000+ looking up from the base of a smoking, shuddering mountain, with the sounds of shofars (ram’s horn horns) trumpeting, and hearing/seeing the voice of god talking to each and every one of us… I am getting ahead of myself, for this is near the end of the parsha.  Let’s see how we got there.  The parsha starts … Continue reading

Parsha B’shalach: A Torah of Freedom

This week’s parsha (Torah portion) was made for all the musicians in the audience. In it we find Miriam striking up the band as we sing the Song of Freedom after crossing through the Yam Suf (Sea of Reeds). However I am getting a little ahead of myself. First we’ve got to get there. Then we can sing and, then, continue on our merry (?) journey to a date with the divine itself. Our parsha starts out by reminding us … Continue reading

Parsha Bo: Come to Pharaoh’s Torah

We start this week’s parsha (Torah portion) with Moshe (Moses) being told by haShem (god) to come to Pharaoh.  What a strange request!  This however is the launching point for a wild exploration of the relationship between Moshe, haShem, and Pharaoh.  Before I get into it, I want to give a quick overview of the parsha so we are all on the same page. As I said the parsha starts with haShem telling Moshe to come to Pharaoh.  He also … Continue reading