Leviticus 9:1 - 11:47

II Samuel 6:1 - 7:17

In this Torah portion, God commands Aaron and his sons to make the burnt and sin offerings at the Tabernacle. When God accepts the offerings, the people shout with joy. God describes to Moses the laws of kashrut.

Why Communication Is at the Core of Community

It’s easy to view those who share a different perspective as an enemy. But Jewish tradition pushes us to see something else.

More on this Torah Portion

Eco-Kashrut: Environmental Standards for What and How We Eat

Incorporating environmental concerns into to the Jewish dietary laws.

Reason is Lost in Anger

In his anger, Moses had lost his reason and knowledge of the law.

Actions Have Consequences

Every action we take produces a reaction.

Challah for Parashat Shmini

The people fell on their faces.

You Are What You Eat

Shemini: A resource for parents.

The Deepest Response of Love

Why Aaron was silent in the wake of his sons' death.

Giving Sensibly

What we can learn from Nadav and Avihu.

Parashat Shmini Quiz

Learn more about the weekly Torah portion.

An Abundance of Fish

We do not have the right to drive fish to extinction.

Considering Our Food Choices

This portion challenges us to express our most intimate and deeply-held values with every mouthful.

Lessons from the Pig

There is a lot to learn from the long tradition of Jewish aversion to pork.

From Regulation to Relation

Relationships between the individual and the Divine are indeed possible.

Death, Grief, And Consolation

Reacting to Moses and Aaron's responses to the deaths of Nadav and Avihu provides us with an opportunity to examine our own responses to tragedy.

Boundaries, Sanctity And Silence

Although we can attempt to understand the deaths of Nadav and Avihu, we are ultimately limited and often feel powerless in the face of God.

Alcoholism And The Nation Priests

The priestly prohibition against excessive drinking reminds us to support those in our community challenged by alcoholism.

The Role Of The Elders

Several commentators discuss the relationship of the elders to the priests, the people, Moses, and God.

Overcoming And Learning From Our Mistakes

Recognizing our fallibility can lead us to compassion and empathy for our fellow humans, and bring us closer to God and others.

The Time And Place For Spontaneity

The deaths of Nadav and Avihu, Aaron's sons, teach us the value and also danger of spontaneous religious expression.

Why Keep Kosher?

Jewish dietary practices allow us to welcome the sacred into our daily lives and into mundane acts.

Holiness Is Life

Moral behavior that respects and ensures life is the key to holiness and purity.