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Tag Archives: Torah

Adam Zander’s Bar Mitzvah

Shalom, my name is Adam Zander and I am a seventh grader at The Brandeis School of San Francisco. My favorite school subject is Social Studies. I love playing basketball and watching sports. I also participate in a musical theater program outside of school. This Saturday, November 25, I will be called to the Torah […] http://bethsholomsf.org/adam-zanders-bar-mitzvah/ Continue Reading...

Vayeitzai — Genesis 28:10 – 32:3

To flee from a challenging situation may strike us irresponsible. However, sometimes taking leave is not about fleeing, but taking hold of a new chapter in life. This is what is at stake in the opening words of this week’s reading: “Jacob took leave of Be’er Sheva and set out for Haran.” (Genesis 28:10) Jacob […] http://bethsholomsf.org/vayeitzai-genesis-2810-323-3/ Continue Reading...

Toldot — Genesis 25:19 – 28:9

As the children of Jacob, the perennial trickster, can we act sincerely and authentically in our own lives? In reading the account of Jacob’s behavior towards his elder sibling, Esau, whom he tricks out of his birthright blessing, Torah compels us to contemplate this dilemma in our own lives. The moment of deception leaves Esau […] http://bethsholomsf.org/toldot-genesis-2519-289-3/ Continue Reading...

Chayai Sarah — Genesis 23:1 – 25:18

Sometimes life demands a certain clinical decisiveness. In last week’s reading, this need for decisiveness was exacerbated by the heightened tensions that came to the fore in both sibling and marital rivalries. Sarah saw conflict on the horizon with her handmaiden, Hagar (aka, Keturah), vying for power in the family lineage through her son, Ishmael, […] http://bethsholomsf.org/chayai-sarah-genesis-231-2518-3/ Continue Reading...

Lech Lecha — Genesis 12:1–17:27

How often have you taken advantage of a last minute travel deal? Today, it may feel good not to know where you will travel until the very last minute; it allows you to discover some new, exotic destination at a great rate. In the ancient Near Eastern mind, however, that same sense of journeying without […] http://bethsholomsf.org/lech-lecha-genesis-121-1727-3/ Continue Reading...

Raquel Sweet’s Bat Mitzvah

My name is Raquel Sweet. I am 13 years old and attend The Brandeis School of San Francisco, where I am in seventh grade. I enjoy swimming, dancing, and playing with my dog, Teddy. I have belonged to Beth Sholom for my entire life. I have so many memories from the synagogue, from attending PJ […] http://bethsholomsf.org/raquel-sweets-bat-mitzvah/ Continue Reading...

Noah — Genesis 6:9-11:32

“Who is like you Who could reach you Who has seen Who has been …When you ride a cherub And glide on the wind And wander through thunder And move within storms Making your way through the waters…“ The liturgical poet Yannai here imagines the divine as controlling the universe, “from the sky to the […] http://bethsholomsf.org/noah-genesis-69-1132-3/ Continue Reading...

Beraysheet — Genesis 1:1 – 6:8

“Living God and Master of the Universe on high and dwelling in eternity, His name holy and He is sublime and created His world out of three words: sefer, sfar, sippur – letter, limit, and tale.“ So begins the ancient treatise, Sefer Yetzirah, which focuses on sound and its magical capacity for “making” and “world […] http://bethsholomsf.org/beraysheet-genesis-11-68-2/ Continue Reading...

Ha’azinu — Deuteronomy 32:1 – 52

American economist Milton Friedman (1912-2006) once remarked that “universities exist to transmit knowledge and understanding of ideas and values to students, not to provide entertainment for spectators or employment for athletes.” Similarly, the task of Mosaic leadership is to transmit the knowledge and understanding of ideas and values for community-building. This being so, it’s worth […] http://bethsholomsf.org/haazinu-deuteronomy-321-52-2/ Continue Reading...

Nitzavim / VaYelekh
Deuteronomy 29:9 – 31:30

American First Lady Eleanor Roosevelt once duly remarked: “One’s philosophy is not best expressed in words; it is expressed in the choices one makes… and the choices we make are ultimately our responsibility.” Life is a series of choices. And sometimes having to make choices may not serve us well, even if it appears that […] http://bethsholomsf.org/nitzavim-vayelekh-deuteronomy-299-3130/ Continue Reading...