Weekly Torah Portion – Ba’Midbar

In Hebrew, writing ‘in the desert’ is spelled using the same four letters as writing ‘through the act of speaking’. Both speech and deserts can lead to great confusion. What is the oasis when it comes to communicating our emotions? – Song!

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the Parshah of Ba’Midbar. Continue reading “Weekly Torah Portion – Ba’Midbar”

Weekly Torah Portion – Behar-Bechukotai

In Exodus the Israelites are commanded to observe Shabbat. In this week’s torah portion they are commanded to allow the land to rest every seven years – Shemitah. While there are economic benefits to rest and renewal, there are also many economic fears. Nevertheless, mitzvot are not given based economic impact, rather based on soul impact. Although it is scary or challenging to cease creating, counter-intuitively it is precisely this cessation that creates a new version of ourselves.

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the Double Parshah of Behar-Bechukotai. Continue reading “Weekly Torah Portion – Behar-Bechukotai”

Weekly Parshah Reflections – Emor

Rabbi Akiva taught that “we are all created in the image of the Divine. This is greatest principle in Torah.” The upcoming holiday of Lag B’Omer commemorates the end of a plague that struck the students of Rabbi Akiva. It is said they were struck by plague because of their bitterness and pettiness against one another. This stands in stark contrast to Rabbi Akiva who taught that love of your fellow human is core to what it means to be a Jew.

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the Parshah of Emor. Continue reading “Weekly Parshah Reflections – Emor”

Weekly Parshah Reflections – Achrei Mot-Kedoshim

“The Golden Rule”.. perhaps the most commonly quoted commandment from the whole of Torah: ‘You shall love your neighbour as yourself’. Less well known is the verse which comes before it and says “rebuke your fellow”. Yet when it comes to both these principles, we often lie to ourselves in order to preserve the created version of who we think we are or who ‘they’ are. But there is a solution.

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the Double Parshah of Achrei Mot-Kedoshim. Continue reading “Weekly Parshah Reflections – Achrei Mot-Kedoshim”

Weekly Torah Portion – Tazria-Metzora

This week’s torah portion Tazria-Metzora discusses the skin malady called ‘tzara’at’. Once the sick individual completes their 7-day quarantine, the Cohen then comes to inspect the skin to ensure they have indeed healed completely. Why are the cohanim the ones that check for healing? Where are the doctors? The reason is that the Cohanim are always witnesses to healing of various types. Now that we no longer have cohanim serving the Temple in Jerusalem, who are the new witnesses to healing?

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the Parshah of Tazria-Metzora. Continue reading “Weekly Torah Portion – Tazria-Metzora”

Weekly Torah Portion – Shemini

This week’s torah portion of Shemini (8th Day) tells the story of a new chapter for the Israelites and its priestly system. New beginnings are rarely ever ‘entirely’ new. This continuity from previous journeys means that we may feel ready to act when, in fact, we are not. Alternatively, starting fresh or facing a new challenge sometimes makes us think we are ill-equipped to rise to the challenge when we actually are. Both miscalculations can have dire results. May we have the wisdom to know when to act and when to listen.

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the Parshah of Shemini. Continue reading “Weekly Torah Portion – Shemini”

Special Holiday Edition – Passover/Pesach

The Counting of the Omer is a 49 day journey from our Exodus out of Egypt towards receiving the Torah at Mt Sinai. How much Torah we receive depends entirely on how much we free ourselves during these days.

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the holiday of Passover/Pesach. Continue reading “Special Holiday Edition – Passover/Pesach”

Weekly Parshah Reflections – Tzav

In the Talmud, Rabbi Perida is asked how he achieved so many blessings and longevity in life. He responds that he never ate his meal until the portions that are designated for the priests to eat are set aside. In short, he understood that to be a healthy person, to have healthy and sustainable communities we must prioritise those that serve the community. During this difficult time, we must prioritise and give thanks to our teachers and our healthcare workers. They do so much for us, we must strive to do all that we can for them.

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the Parshah of Tzav. Continue reading “Weekly Parshah Reflections – Tzav”

Weekly Parshah Reflections – Vayikra

Genesis asks us “what does it mean to be a human being”. Exodus asks “what does it mean to be a Jew”. But Leviticus gives us answers. It is the book of action. During this time of coronavirus, the priority must be immediate action, even if we are filled with uncertainty.

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the Parshah of Vayikra. Continue reading “Weekly Parshah Reflections – Vayikra”

Weekly Torah Portion – Vayakhel & Pekudei

Social distancing and Self Isolation during the time of COVID-19 (coronavirus) is going to be as tough and long as a marathon. At the end of a marathon you run through the tape at the finish line. In this week’s torah portion at the end of building of the tabernacle, a special ritual takes place. What will be our formal ritual at the end of this crisis?

Welcome to the “Raising Holy Sparks” podcast! Hope you enjoy these short weekly insights into the torah portion! This week we dive deep into the Double Parshah of Vayakhel & Pekudei. Continue reading “Weekly Torah Portion – Vayakhel & Pekudei”