These and Those

Musings from Students of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem

Tag Archives: Parsha / Parasha

שלח, shlech

Posted on June 17, 2011 by Avi Strausberg

once again the israelites take to complaining, railing against God, moshe, and anyone else who will listen regarding their miserable fate in the desert.  last week, it was bitter cries about the camp food, longing for the nostalgized days of the meat and fish galore in egypt.  this week, it’s fears that the people will Continue Reading »

[PEP Student] First Opportunities. Second Chances.

Posted on June 12, 2011 by Tamara Frankel

Dear Friends, I hope you are well, recovering from dairy-filled Shavuot meals and enjoying the beautiful weather of summer. Here in Jerusalem, summer has certainly arrived and we managed to make it through only ONE day of dairy meals on Shavuot. As some of you may know, this week was also the graduation of my Continue Reading »

בהעלותך, beha’alotekha

Posted on June 8, 2011 by Avi Strausberg

this week, God instructs moshe to put into place a sound system in order to summon the community and gather the troops.  with two different trumpets at their disposal, God establishes a morse code used for relaying information.  two trumpets/long blast:  everyone gather around.  one trumpet/long blast:  just the chiefs.  one set of short blasts:  Continue Reading »

[PEP Student] Giving & Receiving

Posted on June 5, 2011 by Tamara Frankel

Dear Friends, This week I read Torah for the first time with an egalitarian Orthodox minyan at Pardes. While enjoying a festive breakfast later that morning, my friends turned to me and asked, “So, how did it feel? What was that like? What’s next?” Truth be told, there’s something almost anti-climatic about the experience because Continue Reading »

נשא, naso

Posted on June 3, 2011 by Avi Strausberg

well, the good news is, she survived the ritual ordeal of the housewife gone astray.  the bad news is, well, where do we go from here?  parshat naso describes in detail the disturbing process of how a husband, suspecting his wife of infelidity or overcome by jealousy may bring his wife to trial.  and, this Continue Reading »

במדבר, bamidbar

Posted on May 29, 2011 by Avi Strausberg

i’m a bit embarrassed to say i’ve noticed an unsettling theme in my dvrei torah.  i’m drawn to the characters and the storylines in which the israelities, moshe, aharon, whomever, is called upon to do the work of God and it just seems like its too much for them.  it’s too scary, too dangerous, or Continue Reading »

[PEP Student] Wilderness in the Desert

Posted on May 29, 2011 by Tamara Frankel

Dear Friends, This afternoon during my Tanach class I took a poll of students and staff asking the following questions: have you spent (significant) time in the desert? If yes, how did it feel? How would you describe your experience(s) there? The reason I took this poll is because these questions have followed me as Continue Reading »

על ויקרא, on vayikra

Posted on May 25, 2011 by Avi Strausberg

i was scared to begin the book of vayikra.  for that matter, others were scared for me.  sefer vayikra, which primarily deals with laws surrounding ritual purity, sacrificial offerings, as well as other priestly business, is often written-off as that dry middle section of the Torah necessary to skim through in order to get back on Continue Reading »

[PEP Student] Establishi​ng an Enduring State

Posted on May 23, 2011 by Tamara Frankel

Dear Friends, This week’s parsha, Parshat Bechukotai, has prompted me to return to the subject of Israel and explore my relationship and understandings of this place as a reality and an ideal. There is a bizarre word in the parsha, which funnily enough I’ve encountered countless times before reading the parsha this week, as it Continue Reading »

בחקתי, behukkotai

Posted on May 17, 2011 by Avi Strausberg

in parshat behukkotai, God makes us an offer we can’t forget.  on one hand, if we follow all of His Laws and observe all of His commandments, all will be right in the world.  abounding peace, a land free of enemies, produce to our hearts’ content.  however, if we spurn Him, if we disobey His Continue Reading »