The kohanim are commanded to avoid contact with corpses in order to maintain a high standard of ritual purity. They may attend the funeral of only their seven closest relatives: father, mother, wife, son, daughter, brother, and unmarried sister. The kohen gadol (High Priest) may not attend the funeral of even his closest relatives. Certain marital restrictions are placed on thekohanim. The nation is required to honor the kohanim. The physical irregularities that invalidate a kohen from serving in the Temple are listed. Terumah, a produce tithe given to the kohanim, may be eaten only by kohanim and their household. An animal may be sacrificed in the Temple after it is eight days old and is free from any physical defects. The nation is commanded to sanctify the Name of
A Yiddishe Punim
“They will be holy…” (21:6)
The window of the soul is the human face.
The Hebrew word “panim” — “face” — has the same root as the “p’nim” — meaning “inside”.
The human soul is a
When you look into someone’s face you are looking at an emanation of
It’s good to remember this the next time you get angry with your neighbor and he scowls at you. You may not see it, because the skin and sinews contort to mask the holiness within, but if you look carefully you will see there a
In the current Torah portion, the concept of holiness is repeated many times. The Jewish People are reminded that they are a holy people. The kohanim have an even higher level of sanctity to preserve.
But what is holiness?
The Ramban in last week’s Torah portion says that holiness is refraining from what is permitted.
The more we control our appetites and pass up even those things that are permitted, the less physical we become, which allows our spiritual side to dominate. And the more spiritual we are, the closer we are to
It’s an amazing thing, but refraining from having an unnecessary extravagance — even something small — allows the radiance of
That’s a pretty good deal.