Torah: Ki Teitzei (Deuteronomy 21:10 – 25:19) Haftarah:(Isaiah 54:1-10)
This weekend marks the 21st Commemoration and Remembrance of 9-11.
I will be delivering the opening prayer on Saturday at
Historic Town Square, 50 South Main, St. George Event starts at 9:30am
Even though it is our Sabbath, I believe it is important to pay our respects to our citizens that lost their lives to a Terrorist attack on our country’s soil.
The Torah continues with laws pertaining to marriage and family relationships, miscellaneous ritual laws, agricultural laws, and moral and humane laws.
Judaism concepts and values for this Shabbat:
Kevod Hamet: Reverence for the dead has Judaism insistence on respect for the dead. According to Jewish law, the dead must be buried at the earliest possible moment. Deuteronomy 21:23 states that “a person’s body shall not remain all night upon the tree, but you should bury him the same day.” In ancient times the Jews were persecuted, and many perished. Our sages knew that our fallen people were to have all respect and care for their burial. Today, Jewish people continue doing this mitzvah of care for their loved ones, even though we are dispersed all over the world. Jews strive to bury our loved ones in a timely period. Tradition is burial within 24 hours, however the family members now travel from various places to attend the funeral and extra time is permitted. During the Covid many that died their care and burials varied and the Jewish people adapted.
The Torah provides all of us with guidelines of how people should behave. Ba’ar ba’ali chaim, kindness to animals, the biblical law was very concerned about the treatment of animals. Deuteronomy 22:10 forbids the yoke of a donkey with an ox. These two animals differ greatly in size and strength, and it would be cruel to yoke the weaker donkey with the stronger ox. In addition, Deuteronomy 22:6-7 states that if one chances upon a bird with its eggs, one shall not take the mother along with its young. Here the ground of sympathy is the sacredness of the parental relationship. The mother bird is sacred because she is a mother, but she is sent away, and does not see her young ones taken, she does not feel as much pain. Interestingly, to the Torah the reward for not taking a female bird with its young is that of length of days. *chickens are removed when collecting their eggs. Also, one should feed their animals before the person eats (feeds for your dog, cat and other livestock). It would be cruel for the animals to watch and wait for their food.
If the Torah has such regard for compassion for animals, imagine how much more one should respect and care for human life. Today, we see how moral and humane laws appear to be lacking with disregard for life. The way individuals treat each with vile words and horrific actions. Praying for calm, caring and kindness to return to our society where families and friends may continue to find a neutral tone.
This is the Jewish month of Elul, which has the commandment that the shofar (ram horn) is to be blown every morning service except for Shabbat. It is the Jewish month before Tishrei when the Yamim Nora’im (High Holy Days) happen. G-d is giving us time to wake up. One reflects on their inner self. Did I do a mitzvah each day? Did I say a prayer to G-d each day? Did I do righteous actions to help people?
Most of us pray everyday without realizing. When we see how dry it is and say quietly to the Lord to help give us rain. When you thank Him for the rain. When you travel and arrive at the destination one usually would silently say happy to be here safely. The Lord hears many of your prayers, your prayers when in synagogue, however the inner ones that come from your heart He hears them, too.
Our Thoughts and Our Prayers are needed daily for people here and around the world. It is difficult to watch many events happening today. Maybe one feels helpless, however by praying one focuses on others in need, which will cause the darkness to turn to Bright Light! People often tell me that they feel the prayers healing them. Please know I am a phone call or email away, and I will respond in a timely manner. On the Sabbath I prefer not to answer the phone or travel, however I do in certain moments.
Rabbi Helene Ainbinder
My new Artwork may be seen at the Red Cliffs Gallery in St. George on 200 North in St. George, the Show of S.U.A.G “Fallscapes” September 12 through October 6
Starting Tuesday, September 13 I will be teaching for ICL (Institute for Continued Learning) for those that are 55 years old and older. My topic is “ Ancient Israel to Modern Day Israel Through the Challenges and the Future”. Time is 10 am -10:50 in the Snow bldg. Room 112. It is the larger Science building on 100 East. Look forward to seeing you in person or on Zoom. I continue to teach hybrid style!