Shabbat Shemini/Parah 5782

Like the rest of Leviticus, this week’s Torah portion, Shemini, is laser-focused on holiness. It’s important to appreciate what kedushah meant in ancient religion: it was all about distinctions. The new priestly family of Aharon and Sons had to maintain distinctiveness in dress and in behavior. Whatever Nadav and Avihu did in offering “strange fire,” their deaths are a form of Kiddush HaShem, sanctification of God’s name. And then we get the lists of animals forbidden for consumption, which is also all about boundaries and uniqueness. See how many times in each parshah you can find the word kadosh in its various forms, and you will see that it is utterly core to this part of the Torah!
My goal in offering the weekly musical scavenger hunt is to entice people to read the Torah portion carefully, as well as to have some fun with music. Even if you don’t care for the video clips, it’s worthwhile to read the parshah anyway. For those who want to play along, why did I think of these songs?
A no-brainer from The Beatles
Aerosmith was fun!
Bonus points if you know who Mike is
They gave us this over-the-top Rocky theme
He should have listened to Gwen
He should be safe thanks to the Torah
From a ballet movie
David Bowie on the maftir
Answers will be revealed after Shabbat minhah, which begins this week at 6:50 PM.
Wishing you a Shabbat Shalom and happy listening,
Rabbi David Wise
Candle lighting: 6:54 PM
Torah Reading: Leviticus 9:1-11:47
Maftir: Numbers 19:1-22
Haftarah: Ezekiel 36:16-38