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The Courage to Admit Mistakes
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Some years ago I was visited by the then American ambassador to the Court of St James, Philip Lader. He told me of a fascinating project he and his wife had initiated in 1981. They had come to realise that many of their contemporaries would find themselves in positions of influence and power in the […]
Parshas Kedoshim
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 בצדק תשפט עמיתך…ואהבת לרעך כמוך     יט:טו,יח The Yesod V’Shoresh Ha’Avodah (perek shvii and shmini) avers that the mitzvos of v’ahavta l’reiacha kamocha and b’tzedek tishpot amisecha comprise the backbone of avodas Hashem.  He explains that Hashem feels every Jew’s joy and suffering.  By alleviating someone’s pain, or by giving them joy, one does the same […]
A Holy, Delicate Land
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Perhaps reading the parasha from a post-Pesach perspective impacts what we see, but there are one or two comments in this week’s parasha that are particularly apt for this time of year – after the seder, when all of us felt as if we had been redeemed from Egypt. The book of Vayikra is almost […]
When in Rome…? Israel and Morality
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We are taught by tradition to observe “minhag hamakom”, the custom of the “house”.  When in someone’s territory, we are to respect and abide by his rules and traditions.  Our rabbis were clear that this is the best path for coexisting peacefully with our fellows.  Writ large, it is this tradition that has Jews in […]
Rabbi Weinreb’s Parasha Column, Acharei Mot
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“No Exit” There is much that the Torah leaves to our imagination. Regular students of the weekly Torah portion soon become convinced that the narratives they read each week are deliberately abbreviated, as if to encourage us to fill in the missing links on our own. One outstanding example of such an incomplete narrative is […]
Sistemas de la Perfección Humana
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“Y un hombre de la casa de Israel, y de los conversos quienes viven con usted, quienes consuma cualquiera sangre, Yo pondré mi cara contra su alma a quien ha consumido sangre, y Yo lo excluir de entre las naciones.”  Vayikrah 17:10 La Torah nos advierte con muchas diferentes exhortaciones el no comer sangre.  El […]
In Search of Chametz
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I. Pesach and Matzah While the seven day festival commemorated each year in the spring is now known as Chag haPesach (Passover),[1] the Torah consistently refers to this holiday as Chag haMatzot – the holiday of matzah. The biblical name for the evening prior to this seven day holiday, the day on which the Paschal […]