Tzav

  1. Changing garments. In Oregon, we emphasize informality but old British shuls are very formal. They divide things up. Why does this Parsha repeat the sacrifices of the previous ones. It is addressed to Kohanim, but the Kohen parts could have just been tacked on sentences in the previous Parsha. Perhaps the concept is division. Perhaps role specific clothes and instructions are a wiser track to achieving productive and meaningful lives. Perhaps person-specific understandings are sometimes smarter than universal ones.
  2. This is the first holiness with an animal offering. The prior ones were not at the Mkdash (holy spot) but the Ohel Moed (tent of in-betweenness/twilight) and only meal offerings were Kadosh or Kadosh Kedoshim. If we understand Kedusha as the realization/creation of spiritual energy from physical creativity then we can understand how Kadosh can be associated with animal death. An animal (unlike a person) realizes spiritual potential when it is offered to Hashem. And in the right situations it can realize Kadosh Kedoshim – spiritual perfection.
  3. If you even temporarily intend not to follow the regulations strictly then your offering must be cast aside. Intent is critical to Kedusha not just actions. This is because it is not just physical creation, but spiritual creation.
  4. Why sanctify with oil? Perhaps because oil separates from water. It separates and rises. The goyim get the water sacrifice – the Kohanim the oil anointment. Interestingly, British royalty is anointed with oil.
  5. It seems to literally say “and he sinned the mizbeach.” Moshe offers up a sin offering bull. The bull’s sacrifice atones for a sin – repairing a loss of spiritual possibility. But there does the sin go? This verse suggests that perhaps the altar itself absorbs this loss.
  6. Right ear, thumb and toe? The left brain-right brain concept is overplayed. But left tends to be more analytical and less creative. It maps to the right hand. This is the hand of action and power, particularly for the precise role of a Kohen.
  7. How can Aaron and his sons stay for 7 days – talk about a filibuster. Answers next week.

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