This week, we read the Torah portion of Nitzavim – Moses’ words to Israel as he knows his hours are few. This week, we enter Shabbat, preparing for Rosh Hashanah, as we pray for what only God can give us: time. Moses immediately tells Israel that we are all standing together right now. Whether we
By popular demand we will continue to explore some of our Jewish habits and customs. Jewish Law was established so long ago– do these laws still speak to us today?
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Dr. Rachael Turkienicz has championed inclusive and accessible Jewish education for more than 40 years, paving the way for a woman’s right to fully engage with all facets of Jewish study. Founder and Director of Rachael’s Centre for Torah, Mussar & Ethics, she continues to devote herself to building pluralistic, ethically driven communities of learning in Toronto and globally.
The Saturday night before Rosh Hashanah is time reserved for special prayers called Selichot. We wait until it is late at night, at the time of ‘Ashmoret HaBoker’ – when night is ending, and the transition to dawn is beginning. The prayers we say are apologies and admissions, as we implore God to understand our
This week’s Torah reading, Ki Teitzei, starts with the phrase ‘If you go to war’, and then outlines moments and instances of choices. Much of what is discussed are approaches we’ve already heard elsewhere in the Torah, which begs the question of why they appear here. The question of behaviour and values is key to
In this week’s Torah reading, Shoftim, Moses discusses impartial justice. For example, don’t play favourites in judicial proceedings, and don’t take bribes. In one of the warnings, the Torah says: ‘don’t recognize faces’, an interesting phrase with a latitude of meaning. Within the context of a court proceeding, not recognizing faces is clearly saying not
This week’s parshah starts with the word Re’eh, ‘behold’, and concludes with the commandment Yira’eh, “you are to be seen” –to see and to be seen. We start with Moses outlining blessings and curses. The world has suddenly become a world of black and white: obey the commandments and we get the blessings, disobey and
As we continue to hear Moses’ thoughts in parshat Eikev, our Torah reading this week, Moses says something that confuses us. Moses tells Israel not to forget the past 40 years and the hardships we endured since this was God wanting to know what was in our hearts. The confusing part is that God is