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Tag Archives: sacrifice

Chukat — Numbers 19:1 – 22:1

“The fate of our times is characterized by rationalization and intellectualization and, above all, by the disenchantment of the world.” I am often struck by the prescience of 19th-century German sociologist Max Weber, author of the influential The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (1904-05). Notwithstanding the “disenchantment” that ensues in modernity with the […] http://bethsholomsf.org/chukat-numbers-191-221-3/ Continue Reading...

Acharei Mot / Kedoshim – Leviticus 16:1 – 20:27

In conversation with a Jewish artist, I once quipped that all artists must see their art as an offering to the Other Side. “What?!,” the artist exclaimed. In order to quell the energy of the negative forces in the universe, I explained, the mystical interpretation of many rituals, especially sacrifice, is understood as a way […] http://bethsholomsf.org/acharei-mot-kedoshim-leviticus-161-2027-2/ Continue Reading...

Tzav — Leviticus 6:1 – 8:36

The Greek diplomat, Solon (638-558 BCE) once remarked: “Learn to obey before you command.“ What is the relationship between obedience and commandedness [t’zivui] and how does it affect our relationship to sacral duties [mitzvot]? From hearing the calling to obeying the command [tzav], Moses, Aaron, and Aaron’s sons all receive the divine command regarding their […] http://bethsholomsf.org/tzav-leviticus-61-836-3/ Continue Reading...

Vayikra — Leviticus 1:1 – 5:26

A strange miniature Aleph opens this week’s parsha, the only one of its kind in the Torah. What does it mean? In our study of the Zohar, we discovered the most remarkable insight: “A miniature aleph — deriving from a diminished place, diminished becoming great as it joins above.” The mystics understand this seemingly obscure […] http://bethsholomsf.org/vayikra-leviticus-11-526-3/ Continue Reading...

Vayeira — Genesis 18:12–2:24

To reach the place of infinite earthly delight – that is the true destination of almost any traveler. The essentials that were once needed for any journey and are nowadays taken for granted appear to be alluded to in this week’s reading. “Abraham planted a tamarisk [eshel] at Be’er Sheva and invoked the divine name there […] http://bethsholomsf.org/vayeira-genesis-1812-224/ Continue Reading...

Hardly Strictly Selichot Unplugged Recap

This past Saturday evening, Jews from all over the city visited Congregation Beth Sholom to mark our entrance into the final days of preparation for the Yamim Noraim (“the Days of Awe”). A joint production of Beth Sholom, The Kitchen, Kehillah San Francisco, and Congregation Anshey Sfard, Hardly Strictly Selichot Unplugged made for a special […] http://bethsholomsf.org/hardly-strictly-selichot-unplugged-recap-2/ Continue Reading...

Hardly Strictly Selichot Unplugged

Hardly Strictly Selichot Unplugged Sing in the “Season of Awe”! Congregation Beth Sholom,The Kitchen, Kehillah San Francisco, and Congregation Anshey Sfardco-present a rollicking musical exploration of the traditional Selichot liturgy. September 16, 2017 9 – 10 p.m., Special “Heart Opening” Havdalah    w/ Moshav (for young adults) 10 – 11:30 p.m., Broken Prayer & Its Repair: […] http://bethsholomsf.org/hardly-strictly-selichot-unplugged-2/ Continue Reading...

Re’eh — Deuteronomy 11:26 – 16:17

American naturalist-poet Ralph Waldo Emerson once remarked, “Never lose an opportunity of seeing anything beautiful, for beauty is God’s handwriting.“ Emerson’s 1836 essay, Nature, expresses the belief that everything in our world – even a drop of dew – is a microcosm of the universe. This transcendentalist notion is not foreign to Judaism, especially its […] http://bethsholomsf.org/reeh-deuteronomy-1126-1617-2/ Continue Reading...

Chukat — Numbers 19:1 – 22:1

“The fate of our times is characterized by rationalization and intellectualization and, above all, by the disenchantment of the world.” I am often struck by the prescience of 19th-century German sociologist Max Weber, author of the influential The Protestant Ethic and the Spirit of Capitalism (1904-05). Notwithstanding the “disenchantment” that ensues in modernity with the […] http://bethsholomsf.org/chukat-numbers-191-221-2/ Continue Reading...

“What Is Talmud Study?” Chapter Three

Henry Hollander, leader of our CBS Talmud shiur (study or lesson), is contributing regular blog posts that explore the Talmud, thus providing members of the community who can not participate in the Tuesday night sessions with a taste of the wonder and complexity the Talmud offers. CHAPTER THREE of his exploration appears just below. You […] http://bethsholomsf.org/what-is-talmud-study-chapter-three/ Continue Reading...