Tag Archives: Parashat

Human Rights in the Shadow of War

In the latest newsletter from Rabbis for Human Rights, NPR follows the Olive Harvest in the Shadow of War – Palestinian farmer Ayoub Abuhejleh is arrested as he tries to harvest this crucial crop. Click the photo below to hear the story from NPR.

Far from Gaza, the war between Israel and Hamas upends lives

At the same time, with the rise in settler violence across the West Bank (with three times the number of attacks on previous years), RHR are reaching out to their Palestinian partners to express solidarity and ask how they can help.  This has led to the purchase and distribution of emergency medic kits across the Northern West Bank.

Samir Awad, Avi Dabush, Rabbi Michael Marmur & Anton Goodman of RHR at the Hizme Checkpoint

Rabbis for Human Rights have, alongside a broad coalition of organisations and partners, been able to provide hundreds of boxes of food parcels to be sent to isolated and marginalised communities including Bedouin villages in the Negev and at risk Palestinian towns in South Hebron and the Jordan Valley. You can donate to support this emergency appeal on JustGiving. Continue reading

On Rebuke, Consolation and Rabbinic Commitment

Thoughts on Parashat “Ki Tavo”

by Rabbi Dana Sharon

“Ki Tavo” portion is also known as “The great rebuke portion”, because it contains a long and drawn-out description of blessings and curses that will come upon the people of Israel, according to their actions. When I look up from the books and look at what is going on around me, it is easy for me, too easy for me, to fulfill the mitzvah of rebuke…

These days are the days of the month of Elul, on my desk the machzor for the Tishrei holidays is already open in preparation for Rosh Hashanah and beyond, Yom Kippur, and this passage brings up before me the text of Rabbi Mordechai Rotem’s confession:

“We closed our ears to the cry of the poor and wretched.

We disdained people of honesty and integrity […]

We set our sights on “only by might and only by power” […]

We were afraid to proclaim the truth out loud.”

Continue reading

To Become as Blessing

Thoughts on Parashat “Re’eh” | by Rabbit Lana Zilberman Soloway

See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse. The blessing if you obey the commands of the Lord your God that I am giving you today; The curse if you disobey the commands of the Lord your God and turn from the way that I command you today by following other Gods, which you have not known” (Deuteronomy 11, 26-28)

These are the opening words of Parashat “Re’eh”. The Parasha that reveals many of the commandments that our people are obligated to follow when we enter the land of Israel. These include: destroying idolatry and concentrating God’s work in one place, the laws of Kashrut, the mitzvah of giving away ten percent, the commandment of holy pilgrimage to Jerusalem three times a year, and more.

Some of the commandments were already mentioned earlier, during the wilderness generation. Others are new, only announced now, as we prepare to enter the land. There are fifty five commandments in total, listed one by one, after the opening verse, which has received endless interpretations: “See, I am setting before you today a blessing and a curse”. Continue reading