The Torah outlines the foundational narrative of Judaism. It consists of the first five of the 24 books that make up the Tanach. The five books are: Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. It narrates the origins of Judaism- from God's creation of the world, to the descent of the people of Israel into Egypt and their salvation with the granting of the Torah on Mt. Sinai. The Torah ends with the death of Moses, prior to the people's crossing to the promised land. The books highlight civil laws, religious obligations, and teachings such as the 10 commandments.
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Moses Shows the Elders the Tablets of the Law by Marc Chagall, 1966

Parashat Ekev: Gratitude and showing favor

In this week’s Torah portion, we continue reading Moses’s final speeches, addresses meant to prepare the Jewish nation for entering, conquering and living in Israel.

 An ice cream assembly line at the Ben & Jerry's factory near Kiryat Malachi, July 2021

Parashat Eikev: The land of milk and ice cream

Are we too emotionally invested in cultural icons? Should we be insulted by a decision of the board of Unilever/Ben & Jerry’s?

Rabbi Sacks with Rabbi Steinsaltz at a gala dinner on June 10, 2018, to celebrate the latter’s 80th

Reflections on the first yahrzeit of Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz

“His agenda is still on – Torah is reaching Jews and non-Jews alike. In this way, Rabbi Steinsaltz is still here with us," said his son Rabbi Menachem “Meni” Even-Israel.

‘MOSES ON Mount Sinai’ (c. 1895-1900) by French painter Jean-Léon Gérôme.

Parashat Va'etchanan: Faith in one God – faith in goodness

The significance of God’s revelation at Mount Sinai, an event described in this parasha, far surpasses the creation of a new religion or the cohesiveness of a new nation around its God.


Tisha Be'av: Finding ourselves to find redemption - opinion

The service on Tisha Be’av focuses on golah, exile, and its movement towards geulah, redemption. The difference between these two Hebrew words is one letter, aleph, for ani – me.


Parashat Devarim: The beginning of history

The Torah is insistent that no human is perfect, and it is in the rough and tumble of daily life that we show our spiritual striving.


Parashat Matot-Masei: The art of listening

The two-and-a-half tribes who ask for their land to be outside the stated borders of the land of Israel serve as a subtle but beautiful example of what it is to ask, and what it means to listen.

‘PRIESTS OF the Tabernacle,’ with high priest at center, wearing the ‘hoshen hamishpat.’ (Illustrati

Parashat Matot-Masei: Nurturing those who service God

This week, we read two connected parashot – Matot and Masei, in which we learn about the way that the kohanim and Levites should live.

CHILDREN STUDY Hebrew letters at a school in Mea She’arim.

You need math, English for Torah: Rebuttal to Chief Rabbi Yosef - opinion

Everyone should learn Torah, plenty of it, but it’s rather hard to learn Torah without the aid of the skills imparted by what is called the core curriculum.

Infusing theological meaning into the gender gap

What is the reason for the gender gap in mitzvot for women? Is it women's innate spirituality, or the Jewish woman’s central role as wife and mother?

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