This week’s Torah reading, parshat Emor, contains laws that govern a Kohen. We read that, with few exceptions, a Kohen cannot be in the same place with the body of someone who has died. It means never attending the funeral of a friend. The modern questions around this one detail would only amplify the problem.
Explore What's Happening at Rachael's Centre
In this course, we will look at different constructs and forms of blessings, as well as the latitude for composing a blessing that speaks to both our Jewish and Western cultures.
Find Your Place at Rachael's Centre
Rachael’s Centre is dedicated to building inclusive, ethically driven communities of learning. Through our courses, lectures, and online content, we strive to offer an experience of Jewish texts and wisdom, that exposes their benefit to the modern world. There are many ways to connect and grow with Rachael’s Centre; we look forward to connecting with you.
Become part of a learning community with live courses from the comfort of wherever you are.
Rachael’s Centre builds inclusive, ethically driven communities of learning where everyone is welcome.
Create connections with other learners from all over the world.
Learn From an Exceptional Academic
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.
This week’s parshah, Kedoshim, contains ‘The Holiness Code’, which includes the famous verse “you shall love your neighbour as yourself”. The Holiness Code gets its name from the first verse, which tells us that we are to be holy because God is holy. Accepting that God is the source, and we are the image, the
h Yesterday was Yom HaShoah, the day we remember the victims of the Shoah. In Judaism, memories are not static things, they are tools we use for improving the world. The challenge is that we are human, and therefore creatures of habit. There is a concept in history that generals always fight the previous war.
We are entering the final days of Passover and they are distinctly different from the first days. At the beginning of the holiday, we celebrate our freedom and redemption from Egypt, but as the week progresses we also progress through the Egypt narrative to find ourselves at the Red Sea for these last few days.
This Shabbat is called Shabbat HaGadol – the Grand Shabbat. It is always the Shabbat before Pesach, and there is much debate in our texts on how it got its name. An interesting comment suggests that as we prepare to leave Egypt, we are given our first commandment as Jews. We are told to separate
This week’s Torah reading, parshat Shemini, begins by telling us about “the eighth day” of consecrating the Kohanim. Amidst the routine of offering sacrifices, a horrific tragedy occurs within Aaron’s family on this day. The problem is, there is no ‘eighth day’. Genesis clearly outlines a seven-day cycle. Everything that was created fits within the