Tazria-Metzora 5778-2018

“Looking at Tzara’at from a Different Perspective”

Summary: With the explosive growth of social media and the growing trend to let it “all hang out,” those who are concerned for the sanctity of speech need to follow the Torah’s strong advice to scrupulously guard our tongues and isolate the habitual speakers of evil.

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Tazria-Metzorah 5772-2012

“The Essential Ingredient for Repentance and Prayer--Humility”

The highly symbolic ritual of purification of the person stricken with the Tzaraat disease has much to teach us about achieving proper Teshuva (repentance) and the art of offering exalted prayer.

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Tazria-Metzorah 5770-2010

"The Human Animal"

The rabbis are perplexed as to why the laws of childbirth follow the laws of kosher and non-kosher animals. Shouldn’t laws pertaining to humans come first?

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Tazria-Metzorah 5769-2009

"And He Shall be Brought to the Priest"

The expression, "And he shall be brought to the priest" is repeated in each of this week's double parashiot, Tazria and Metzora. This recurring phrase is explained by various commentators as having important contemporary implications and bearing vital lessons for both Israel and American society.

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Tazria-Metzorah 5767-2007

"The Conundrum of Childbirth"

The Torah in parashat Tazria declares that after the birth of a male child, a woman is in a state of ritual impurity for seven days followed by a state of ritual purity for 33 days. After the birth of a female child, the birth mother is in a state of ritual impurity for 14 days, followed by a state of ritual purity for 66 days. Our rabbis are perplexed by the law that a woman should be in a state of ritual impurity at all after giving birth to a child, and why the numbers of days of impurity and purity are doubled for a female child as opposed to the birth of a male child.

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Tazria-Metzorah 5766-2006

"The Torah's Home Security System"

In parashat Metzorah we learn of the perplexing law of the house that is afflicted with tzara'at. This ancient law has much to teach us about the positive values and behaviors that must permeate a Jewish home, and the ruin and destruction that result from improper models and examples.

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Tazria-Metzorah 5764-2004

"Circumcision and Shabbat"

When the prescribed day for a circumcision falls out on the Shabbat, which commandment takes precedence? In the answer found in parashat Tazria, we discover the true essence of both these mitzvot, and how they each bind us to G-d and to eternity.

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Tazria-Metzorah 5761-2001

"Challenging the Stereotypes: Purity and Impurity in Childbirth"

In parashat Tazria, we encounter one of the most perplexing laws found in the Torah--the law of purity and impurity of a mother following childbirth. A host of explanations are offered by our commentators and thinkers. Although none of the answers is entirely satisfying, they do reveal a great deal of wisdom and insight on the part of the Torah, reflecting a rather extraordinary understanding of the essence of human relationships.

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