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Teachings

Vayetze 5781 — The Humanity Of Our Ancestors

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There’s something so richly rewarding about returning again and again to our foundational stories in sefer Bereshit year after year. As we learn in Perkei Avot, often translated imprecisely as ethics of our fathers, turn it turn it, for everything is in it. I approach Torah year after year with the intuitive sense that something new will emerge—Torah will reveal...[ read more ]

Bereshit 5781

Rabbi Lauren Tuchman sits at a table and studies from a Braille Talmud

After a Tishrei like no other, here we are, beginning our Torah anew, just as we do every year. Bereshit, like all of the parshiyot in Genesis is filled with foundational ideas and narratives. In the opening perek/chapter, we are told that human beings are created b’tzelem Elokim—in the image of The Divine. This seemingly simple idea has been understood...[ read more ]

Wisdom And Reflections For A Very Different New Year: Seeking The Divine Face

Rabbi Lauren Tuchman sits at a table and studies from a Braille Talmud

This piece originally appeared as part of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington's Wisdom and Reflection For A Very Different New Year series in 5780/2020.   Psalm 27, which we traditionally recite twice daily from the beginning of Elul through Hoshana Raba is one of my favorites. It is emotionally complex and multi-faceted. I wish to be in Your Presence,...[ read more ]

The Plurality of Mourning Shabbat Nachamu 5780

Rabbi Lauren Tuchman sits at a table and studies from a Braille Talmud

This piece originally appeared on SVARA: A Traditionally Radical Yeshiva.   Nachamu Nachamu ami, “comfort, comfort my people,”— the opening words of the Haftorah from the book of Isaiah, which we will read this Shabbat, ring particularly poignant this year. What does it mean for us to move from a period of mourning, fasting, and solemnity into a prolonged period of...[ read more ]

A Reflection For The Three Weeks 5780

Rabbi Lauren Tuchman sits at a table and studies from a Braille Talmud

With every passing year, the enduring wisdom and beauty of the Jewish calendar never ceases to surprise me and give me newfound insight. I’ve been thinking these past few weeks about the upcoming period of The Three Weeks, a period of collective mourning for the Jewish people which begins on the 17th of Tammuz and ends on the 9th of...[ read more ]

Bahaalotekha 5780

Rabbi Lauren Tuchman sits at a table and studies from a Braille Talmud

Our parsha or Torah portion this week is parashat Bahaalotekha, the third parsha in Sefer Bamidbar or the book of Numbers. We are introduced to Pesach Sheni or Second Passover in this parsha, which was instituted upon request of some Israelites who were unable to offer the Passover sacrifice at its official or fixed time—on the 14th of Nisan at...[ read more ]

Grief, Mourning and Rage: A Spiritual Response and Call To Action for White Folks

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In this audio teaching, I offer a response for this moment. Grief, Mourning and Rage: A Spiritual Response For This Moment

Bamidbar 5780

Rabbi Lauren Tuchman sits at a table and studies from a Braille Talmud

Bamidbar 5780   Parashat Bamidbar, which Jews the world over just completed, is chiefly concerned with an extensive census of military-aged men and a meticulous description of the manners by which each tribe camped and traveled. The parsha opens the fourth book of the Torah, known in English as Numbers owing to the opening census and in Hebrew as Bamidbar,...[ read more ]

Behar 5780

Rabbi Lauren Tuchman sits at a table and studies from a Braille Talmud

This week marks the tenth Shabbat since I have been in shul, davening with a minyan. Each Shabbat morning as I arise, put on my tallit and prepare to pray the morning or Shacharit service, I cannot but feel the absence of friends, the silence without melodious harmonization, and the void left without a physical community to be amongst. This...[ read more ]

A Teaching On Parashat Emor and Pesach Sheni

Picture of Rabbi Lauren Tuchman

A Teaching On Parashat Emor and Pesach Sheni




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