By Rabbi Dr Charles Middleburgh, May 12, 2011

On the dedication page of her book Silent Spring, published in 1962, the late Rachel Carson, one of the most influential writers of the 20th century, quoted the writer E. B. White, creator of Stuart Little, who wrote: "I am pessimistic about the human race because it is too ingenious for its own good. Our approach to nature is to beat it into submission.



By Sally Berkovic, May 5, 2011

God's busy social calendar is outlined in this week's parashah: Shabbat, festivals and the counting of the Omer – His attendance is required at every moment. However, nestled among these holy days is a commandment that demands human intervention, to leave aside a corner of the field for the poor.



By Rabbi Benjamin Rickman, April 28, 2011

The commandment to be holy was spoken to the entire nation.This was unusual in that most commandments were communicated directly to Moses, who would then transmit the teachings to the people.


Shabbat chol hamo'ed pesach

By Rabbi Miriam Berger, April 21, 2011

This reminder, shared with us on Shabbat Chol Hamo'ed Pesach, ensures that the end of Pesach is marked as a sacred occasion. It is especially timely when we consider the huge build-up normally associated with Pesach.


Acharei mot

By Rabbi Pinchas Hackenbroch, April 14, 2011

This Shabbat is conventionally called Shabbat Hagadol, the Great Shabbat. The question is often posed what is unique about this Shabbat to deserve such a title, bearing in mind that i is the regular uniform Shabbat service.



By Rabbi Dr Charles Middleburgh, April 7, 2011

The recalcitrant "plague" - be it damp or dry rot - that afflicts the hapless householder in Parashat Metzora always reminds me of Mercutio's damning condemnation of Montague and Capulet alike, "A plague o' both your houses" in Romeo and Juliet; the association, though in its original context a malediction, nevertheless opens up many positive homiletical pathways in two parashiyot which are otherw



By Sally Berkovic, March 31, 2011

The moon has inspired poetry, art and popular music: think Frank Sinatra, Van Morrison and Pink Floyd. This Shabbat an additional paragraph - Exodus 12:1-20  - will be read and we will be told hachodesh hazeh lachem, "this month will be to you".



By Rabbi Benjamin Rickman, March 24, 2011

It is not easy to remain true to one's traditions. Society today is happy to condone or even promote imitation products, which affects the way we see the world. Even in our spiritual lives, we may be tempted from authentic practice, instead looking to experiment with different techniques and stimulants.



By Rabbi Miriam Berger, March 16, 2011

Parashat Tzav continues to explore the themes of sacrifice, describing in detail how the burnt offering, meal offering, guilt offering and peace offering were to be carried out. Since the destruction of the Temple, our prayers and liturgy have come to replace sacrifice. Even the structure of our prayers, such as the place of Musaph, seeks to mimic the Temple's sacrificial rituals.



By Rabbi Pinchas Hackenbroch, March 10, 2011

Rashi notes that the Torah uses the word adam for person rather than the more frequent ish; he explains that just as Adam did not serve God with anything acquired dishonestly, because nothing in the world belonged to anyone else, so must a person who brings an offering make certain that the offering was honestly acquired.