Metzora 5771-2011

"We Hold These Truths To Be Self-Evident"

Notwithstanding the uniqueness of the Declaration of Independence, the idea that certain concepts and ideas are truly “self-evident,” is not an original Jeffersonian concept. The Torah is filled with concepts and ideas that are regarded as self-evident.

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Metzorah 5768-2008

"Modesty and Humility for All"

The Torah requires a homeowner who suspects that his house is afflicted with the disease tzah'rah'aht to call the Kohen and tell him, "It seems to me as if there is an affliction in the house." Our rabbis say that even if the homeowner is a scholar who knows for certain that the affliction is unquestionably tzah'rah'aht, the homeowner must not take it upon himself to say so definitively. There is much to be learned from this humble and modest approach.

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Metzorah 5765-2005

"And you think that Tzara'at is Weird?"

The ancient Biblical claims that a person could contract a dermatological disease by speaking lashon hara strains our rational credibility. And yet, every day scientific knowledge uncovers new and incredible discoveries that seem to be as absurd as the Biblical disease Tzara'at. Yet, many of these scientific discoveries are valid, in fact, we could not conduct our lives without utilizing these new scientific powers and discoveries. So, let's not be so quick to dismiss the Biblical disease, Tzara'at. In light of what we've already discovered scientifically, Tzara'at may not at all be in the realm of impossibility.

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Metzorah 5763-2003

"The Nidah--Affirming the Sanctity of Life"

The laws of the menstruant woman are extremely complicated and are frequently misinterpreted and misunderstood. Nidah has nothing to do with impurity. To the contrary, the ritual is an affirmation of life, underscoring the basic Jewish tenet that the sanctity of human life is the bottom line of all of Judaism.

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Metzorah 5760-2000

"The Ultimate Value and Sanctity of Human Life in Judaism"

Not only a menstruant woman, but also a man who has had emissions was rendered ritually impure in ancient times. These complex laws of emissions and purification that seem so crude at first blush are truly enlightened. They come to teach the sanctity of human life and its ultimate value in Judaism.

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