Parashat Beha’alotcha

(When You Raise (the Lamps))

Numbers 8:1 - 12:16

Zechariah 2:14 - 4:7

In this Torah portion, the Israelites receive instructions regarding Passover. They journey forth from Sinai and complain to God on several occasions, provoking God’s anger. Miriam and Aaron speak against Moses.

FULL SUMMARY

Ceding Control — and Seizing It

One word in this portion means both “wind” and “spirit” — and the duality is striking.

More on this Torah Portion

Internal and External Change

Leaving Egypt was a change. Leaving slavery is a transition.

Cultivated Cravings

Not letting desires frustrate us.

Our Covenantal Responsibilities

This week's portion reminds us of our sacred obligations to those who are still languishing in oppression.

The Trumpet Blasts

The sound of the shofar can mobilize us and help us consider the path ahead.

Sometimes There Are Second Chances

Of "Second Passover," Rabbi Akiva and adult bat mitzvahs.

Jews March On

The verses recited when the ark (and today the Torah) was carried remind us of our own restless wanderings.

Trying To Remember The Reason I Forgot

Being constantly engaged in learning allows us to guard against the pervasive forgetfulness around us.

Leaving Childhood Behind

The specific complaints of the Israelites in the wilderness illustrate their inability to develop mature, adult relationships.

The Connection And Stability Of Blessing

Parashat Beha'alotcha illustrates three paths of achieving meaning in life.

Power Sharing

The impacts of grassroots organizations and the division of power.

Beyond Fear

Social justice as a sacred communal obligation

Craving Perspective

The closer we are to God, the more we are able to put our cravings into perspective.

God Hears, But What We Do Matters Most

Miriam and Aaron's criticism of Moses, and Miriam's punishment of leprosy teach lessons of sibling and communal responsibility.

Words That Wound

The Rabbinic and Hasidic understandings of gossip focus on the impossibility of repairing the damage it causes.

How The Trouble Began

The Israelites' troubles, and indeed our own troubles, begin when we turn away from God.

Igniting Curiosity’s Flame

It's important to encourage a child's natural ability and his or her own way of discovering the world.

Appreciating What You Have

An important part of being content is to stop comparing ourselves to others.

Parshat Beha’alotcha: Summary

The Israelites receive instructions regarding Passover, journey forth from Sinai and complain to God on several occasions.