Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Matot-Masei / מטות־מסעי

This Shabbat we read the two last Torah portions of the book “Bamidbar / Numbers”. And here’s how they start:     ב  וַיְדַבֵּר מֹשֶׁה אֶל-רָאשֵׁי הַמַּטּוֹת, לִבְנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל לֵאמֹר:  זֶה הַדָּבָר, אֲשֶׁר צִוָּה יְהוָה. 2 And Moses spoke unto the heads of the tribes of the children of Israel, saying: This is the thing which the…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Pinchas / פינחס

There are plenty of great comments on this Parshah.  I am just going to direct you to one of them, from Rabbi Alex Israel. He teaches at Pardes Institute. There are many more if you’d like to read about Pinchas and the census. For me, this Parshah is all about the women, and how they have…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Balak / בָּלָק

I love this Parshah! Almost until the very end of it, it talks about the beauty and strength of Israel, almost to the point of modern Anti-Semites saying that “Jews own everything”. Israelites’ flight from Egypt and miraculous things that happened to them in the desert instilled such fear in the neighbouring nations that they…

Some Observations

This was an interesting week for me: challenging, exhilarating, nourishing, disturbing, all at once. Last Sunday, I have started a week long Jewish Professionals Institute at Mechon Hadar. My reasoning was mostly financial – since I wouldn’t be able to afford going to Jerusalem this year to study at Pardes, I decided I would take…

A Random Step

This Sunday I am embarking on a new adventure. I am starting a week-long class at Mechon Hadar. Again, not without trepidation. This is not exactly the place where the level of observance and Yirat Shamaim is according to my view of the world. And yet, I’ve decided to try it. For a very practical reason – there…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Korach / קֹרַח‎

This is a very hard Parshah. Honestly, aren’t most of them hard to digest? Here, we see that the fight for a better position, more privilege or higher standard of living is as old as time itself. Korach, a man of distinguished lineage and great knowledge orchestrates a revolt against Moshe and Aaron. When the…

Women Leadership in Orthodoxy. A New Reality.

Yesterday, I have spent my morning attending the graduation (smicha) ceremony of the Yeshivat Maharat that took place in the beautiful Kehilat Yeshurun synagogue of the Upper East Side. Not without some trepidation I went not really knowing what to expect. For some time now I have been fascinated with roles of women in leadership within…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Shelach / שְׁלַח

Every Parshah “accidentally” throws some very contemporary notes at you. Everyone knows how ancient the city of Hebron is. This Parshah points out the depth of its history by comparing it to a city, apparently, well known in the ancient word and stating that Hebron is seven years older. כב  וַיַּעֲלוּ בַנֶּגֶב, וַיָּבֹא עַד-חֶבְרוֹן, וְשָׁם אֲחִימַן…

Verses of Pain, Food & D’var Torah All in One Shot

I guess we, the unfortunate souls trapped in the cement jungle of the biggest apple of the world – New York City are so used to the pollution we take for air, that once we hit the real clean air of the country, our bodies start to reject it. Right after returning from my mini…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Naso / נָשֹׂא

Since there is no way I will have time to write more this week, I’ve decided to share Dr. Ackerman’s view on the parshah: “The Lord spoke to Moses, saying,’ Take a census of the sons of Gershon, as well, according to their fathers’ household, according to their families.’” (Numbers 4:21) Parashat Naso contains the…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Bamidbar/בְּמִדְבַּר

This week we count. א  וַיְדַבֵּר יְהוָה אֶל-מֹשֶׁה בְּמִדְבַּר סִינַי, בְּאֹהֶל מוֹעֵד:  בְּאֶחָד לַחֹדֶשׁ הַשֵּׁנִי בַּשָּׁנָה הַשֵּׁנִית, לְצֵאתָם מֵאֶרֶץ מִצְרַיִם–לֵאמֹר. 1 And the LORD spoke unto Moses in the wilderness of Sinai, in the tent of meeting, on the first day of the second month, in the second year after they were come out of the…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Behar/Bechukotai – בהר/בחקותי

To me, this week’s parshah is speaking about holiness and sanctity no less than the ones talking about the priests’ behavior. It is one of the parashiot that truly shows that the Gd of Israel is the Gd of everything and everyone. By His hand, the world is governed towards justice. This justice starts with the…