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Naso

Naso 5777 – The Paris Agreement on Climate Change

June 4, 2017

Even some of my supporters have told me, “Rabbi, I come to shul to relax on Shabbat. I don’t want to hear things that are political, that are contentious. I get enough of that during the week.” We just celebrated Shavuot. Shavuot is the holiday when we celebrate receiving the Torah. But what is...
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Naso 5775: Enjoy Your Wine!

May 29, 2015
wine and the nazir

God wants us to drink wine. That’s my favorite conclusion from thinking about this week’s Torah reading, Naso. In this week’s parsha we learn about the nazir, sort of a Jewish version of a monk. When a person decides to take on a vow to be a nazir, he shall abstain from wine and...
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Naso 5766 — Radical Rabbis

June 9, 2006

The rabbis of two thousand years were a real bunch of radicals. When they were confronted with something in the Torah that conflicted with the sense of values and ethics they learned from the Torah itself, they resolved the issue by deciding in favor of the values over the explicit law found in the...
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Naso 5764 — bitter waters, bitter treatment

June 3, 2004
Abu Ghraib

What’s the cure for an overwhelming case of marital jealousy? This week’s Torah portion, Naso, recommends psychological torture and sexual humiliation. That is exactly what the Sotah ritual, the ritual of the bitter waters, amounts to. If a man suspected his wife of having gone astray, and he was caught up in a ruach...
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