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Dvar Torah

Clothes for All Occasions

Clothes for All Occasions

This week’s Torah reading, Tetzaveh, spends a great deal of time describing the details of the priestly clothes, בגדי כהונה. Why does the Torah insist on specific materials, measurements, and design in the priestly clothes? On reflection, we learn something important from the Torah’s insistence. In service to God, we must only focus on that which is true and eternal.

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Judaism: The Complete Religion

Judaism: The Complete Religion

When we talk about religion our minds jump to notions of God and theology, or perhaps religious practices and ceremonies, or to a list of do’s and don’ts for the faithful to follow. The realm of civil law is relegated to the mundane world of the practical, not the lofty spiritual plane. Here again, Judaism demonstrates unique qualities.

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The Crime of Envy

The Crime of Envy

Parshat Yitro contains the most widely known section of all biblical verses. They are commonly referred to as the 10 Commandments although Talmudic analysis clearly demonstrates that they contain more than 10 commands or mitzvot. The Torah accurately uses the term עשרת הדברת or “10 Statements,” and as Rav Saadia Gaon explains, they are the 10 broad and general categories under which every one of the 613 mitzvot of the Torah falls.

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Human Dignity and Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

This week’s Torah portion, Beshalach, Pharaoh is adamant in his refusal to accede to Moshe’s request, so much so that he allows the devastation of his kingdom that culminates with his army drowning in the Reed Sea. What was Moshe asking from Pharaoh?

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Anger Has Its Place, But When?

Judaism, unique in every way from the common notion of religion, depends on a relationship that is crucial for its continued existence. I am referring to the teacher-student relationship.

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