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Mourning and Meaning

We read in this week's Torah portion about the death of Aaron's two eldest sons, Nadab and Abihu.

D'var Torah By: 
Hearing the Sounds of Silence
Davar Acher By: 
Greg Wolfe

Amidst all the pomp and circumstance, the pyrotechnics and awesome majesty, something has gone awry. A terrible tragedy has occurred!

What Makes a Jew a Jew?

Throughout the millennia, one question that has continued to pique the curiosity of Jews and non-Jews, rabbinic sages and scholars, and leaders and hoi paloi alike is: What constitutes a Jew?

D'var Torah By: 
Not the What but the How
Davar Acher By: 
Debra Landsberg

As Dr. Bard has discussed, Parashat Sh'mini presents us with the challenge to define ourselves as Jews-to identify the behavioral boundaries that mark us as Jewish.

The Act of Listening

Chapter 10 of Leviticus provides us with an extraordinary example of human growth.

D'var Torah By: 
Aaron's Very Loud Silence
Davar Acher By: 
Nancy Bossov

The dynamics described by Rabbi Wiener between the two brothers in service to God, Aaron, and Moses is indeed fascinating.

A Diet of Holiness

The second half of Sh'mini, as the Reform Movement has divided it (see

D'var Torah By: 
Finding Balance in Our Meals
Davar Acher By: 
Eric Schulmiller

In our day and age, what does it mean to be, as Rabbi Richard Levy so eloquently put it, "consecrated consumers of God's bounty"?

Alien Fire

The very title of this parashah warns us that something is different, for it begins with a surprising phrase: "On the eighth day [Va-y'hi bayom hashmini

D'var Torah By: 
When There Are No Answers
Davar Acher By: 
Debra Hachen

Tragic sudden death like that of Aaron's sons leaves us asking: Why? The commentators sought to find the cause of this disaster in the wrongful actions of the two priests themselves.


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