A Bissel of Torah: CHUKAT (NUMBERS 19:1-22:1)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah Congregant This week, we read a double Parshiot (CHUKAT), followed by Parsha (BALAK). In an almost imperceptible yet seismic shift, each of these Parshiot leap several decades ahead of our most recent Torah reading; and, the narrative of each read like a riddle inside of a riddle. The Torah Parsha […]

Bissel of Torah: BALAK (NUMBERS 22:2-25:9)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah Congregant Parsha BALAK begins with the Israelites continuing their journey to Canaan. They have already defeated their enemies in many nations; and, have settled their next encampment on the border of Moab. Based on the victories the Israelites had achieved in other nations, Balak, the King of Moab was justified […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: KORACH (NUMBERS 16:1-18:32)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah Congregant In last week’s Torah Parsha (SHELACH), twelve ‘spies’, after scouting the land of Canaan for forty days, returned with a blatantly exaggerated falsehood, pertaining to the strength and size of the inhabitants. With the exception of Joshua and Caleb, the other ten men rejected the assumption that the people […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: SHELACH (NUMBERS 13:1-15:41)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah Congregant In last week’s Torah parsha (BEHAALOTECHA), we read about the Israelite’s turbulent saga of disillusionment, with their way of life in the desert. This week’s parsha (SHELACH) takes a new and momentarily promising turn, with a look towards the future. The Lord spoke to Moses, saying: “Send out men, […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: NASO (NUMBERS 4:21-7:89)

This week’s Torah Parsha (NASO) begins with a continuation of Parsha (BAMIDBAR); completing the census of the Children of Israel, and assigning the intricate details of the tasks to be performed by each individual tribe, in the transporting of the Tabernacle. With 176 verses, NASO is both the longest portion of the Torah, and the […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: BEHAR (LEVITICUS 25:1-26:2)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah, Congregant This week, we read a double Parshiot, (BEHAR) followed by (BECHUKOT), ending the Book of Leviticus. The primary themes of Parsha (BEHAR) are laws and commandments, pertaining to freedom, equality, and charity with ‘dignity’. The Lord spoke to Moses and said: “Tell the Children of Israel, you may sow […]

A ‘Bissel’ of Torah: EMOR (LEVITICUS 21:1-24:3)

By Joy Scott, Am Haskalah, Congregant This week’s Torah Parsha (EMOR) begins with God saying to Moses: “Speak to the Kohanim; and, say that none of them can become defiled; impure; or, ceremonially unclean; by touching a dead person, unless the one who died is a wife, or a blood relative”(1). The requisite for purity […]