Vayikra 5777-2017

“רֵיחַ נִיחוֹחַ --A Sweet Savor unto the L-rd” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald With this week's parasha, parashat Vayikra, we begin reading the third book of the Torah, Vayikra, which is…

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Passover Spitting

In honor of the annual “Something on a Stick Day,” Jewish Treats will discuss a timely and famous Jewish ritual food that is roasted on a stick: the Korban Pesach, the Paschal Offering.…

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Korach 5774-2014

“Aaron Stops the Plague” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Korach, we read of the dramatic rebellion of Korach, Datan and Abiram, and their…

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B’ha’alot’cha 5770-2010

"The Murmurers" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat B'ha'alot'cha, is a complex and fascinating parasha. The first three chapters of the parasha contain many…

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Ahhh…Cholent

The highlight of many Shabbat lunch tables is cholent, a hot stew which simmers overnight in a crockpot, on the stove or in the oven. Known also as chamim by many…

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Korach 5772-2012

"Jealousy, Lust, and Thirst for Honor" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Korach, we read of the contentious rebellion of Korach and his cohorts, and its…

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Ahh…Cholent!

The highlight of many Shabbat lunch tables is cholent, a hot stew which simmers overnight in a crockpot, on the stove or in the oven. Known also as chamim by many Sephardim, cholent is…

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Acharei Mot-Kedoshim 5762-2002

"Shaatnez: Understanding Irrational Decrees" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Once again, this week, we have combined parashiot--Acharei Mot-Kedoshim. The theme of the second parasha,…

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Behar-Bechukotai 5766-2006

"The Economics of Torah" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald The very last chapter of the book of Leviticus chapter 27, which concludes this week's double parashiot Behar-Bechukotai, focuses on…

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Acharei Mot-Kedoshim 5781-2021

“Shaatnez: Understanding ‘Irrational’ Decrees” (updated and revised from Acharei Mot-Kedoshim 5762-2002) by, Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Once again, this week, we have double…

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Ordaining with Both Hands

Semicha, which connotes rabbinic ordination, as understood today, consists of passing proficiency exams and receiving permission from one’s teachers to rule on questions of Jewish law.…

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A Jewish Treats Guide to Visiting the Zoo

Throughout the world, April 8th is celebrated as “Zoo Lovers Day.” The first zoo of record was built in 1752 at the behest of Emperor Francis I in Vienna, Austria. Although it was built…

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Jewish Law on the Breakdown Lane

The Torah records two similar verses, one of which can be found in this week’s parasha, Mishpatim, regarding helping travelers with animals and burdens. In parashat Mishpatim (Exodus…

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Noah 5766-2005

"The Seven Commandments Given to the Descendants of Noah" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Noah, G-d blesses Noah and his children after the Flood, and graces…

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What’s With The Cheese

There are few types of food with as many variations as cheese. Like all dairy products, only cheese that has been made with the milk of a kosher animal can be kosher. (For those…

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Picking Up Pigskin

The Jewish dietary laws prohibit Jews from eating any food products derived from animals that do not have both split hooves and chew their cud. It is a not uncommon assumption that Jews…

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Chukat-Balak 5766-2006

"The Sanctity of Human Life" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In the first of this week's two parashiot, Chukat-Balak, we learn of the law of the Parah Adumah, the Red Heifer. In Numbers…

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Vayeishev 5767-2006

"What's in a Name?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Vayeishev, we are privileged to encounter one of the great epic narratives of world literature, the saga…

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Pekudei 5776-2016

“The Mishkan--the Tabernacle, as Collateral” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Pekudei, opens with a reckoning and accounting of all the precious materials that…

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Tzav 5770-2010

"The Command" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Tzav, the Al-mighty says to Moses (Leviticus 6:2): "Tzav et Aharon v'et bah'nahv lay'mor: Zoht toh'raht…

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History of the State Since 1948

History of the StateSince 1948 Table of Contents the war of independence population shifts 1956- the sinai campaign 1967 –…

“He Was the Best Man We Had”

(Quote by David Ben Gurion) In early 1948, knowing that the untrained and disorganized Jewish  fighting forces could not withstand a true battle for the Promised Land, David Ben…

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Bo 5763-2003

"The Subtle Secrets of the 10 Plagues" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat Bo, describes the last three of the ten plagues. While the listing of the Ten…

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Emor 5774-2014

“The Sadducees and the Counting of the Omer” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Among the 63 mitzvot (24 positive and 39 negative) found in this week’s parasha, parashat Emor, is the mitzvah of…

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Saying Goodbye to Shabbat

Shabbat ends when three stars appear in the sky, a little more than an hour after candle lighting time. Maariv, the evening service, is recited in the synagogue and, upon returning…

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The Yom Kippur War

It would be impossible in this format to provide a full history of the events that led to the outbreak of the Yom Kippur War. However, in honor of the cease-fire that ended the fighting…

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Saying Goodbye To Shabbat

Shabbat ends when three stars appear in the sky, a little more than an hour after candle lighting time. Maariv, the evening service, is recited in the synagogue and, upon returning home,…

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Bo 5769-2009

"It's Payback Time!" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In the concluding chapter of this week's parasha, parashat Bo, G-d commands Moses to inform the people to sanctify the firstborn. The…

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Kee Teitzei 5778-2018

"The Impact of Performing Mitzvot" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Kee Teitzei, has more mitzvot than any other parasha in the Torah, featuring a total of 74…

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Shabbat Prayers

Learn AboutShabbat Prayers Table of Contents Morning Blessings (Birkhot Hashachar) Verses of Praise (Pesukei Dezimrah)…