The New Shul

Parshat T’tzaveh

This week’s parashah, T’tzaveh, begins with God’s command to prepare pure olive oil for the ner tamid, the perpetual lamp whose light will symbolize God’s presence in the tabernacle. Immediately after that, God teaches Moshe how to make the special garments that the high priest is to wear.

Why are those sets of instructions given together? According to the S’fat Emet, it is to teach the importance of making ourselves whole. The ner tamid represents the human soul, which has the power to bring God’s light into the world. But the soul can be a source of light only to the extent that it is integrated with the body. It is with our hands and feet and vocal chords, after all, that we do mitzvot. By teaching us about the priestly garments right after the ner tamid, the Torah reminds us that we we can make our souls a source of light only by sanctifying our physicality as well.

The point is that authentic spirituality is not just about our innner life, but about our outer life as well. Spirituality is not just about how we feel, but about what we do. It is as whole human beings, soul and body together, that we bring God’s light into the world.

  • The New Shul’s Shabbat morning service is from 9 am to about 11:45 am. In accordance with the latest Covid guidance from the CDC, we require all those over the age of 2 to wear a mask while in our building. Our kiddush-lunch is outdoors, so masks are not required.
  • This Shabbat morning, February 12, the kiddush-lunch will be sponsored by Rabbi Bob and Debby Eisen in honor of Rabbis Wasserman and Kanter.
  • Weekday minyanim at The New Shul are on Monday, Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday evenings at 6:30 pm, and on Sunday mornings at 9:30 am. Kabbalat Shabbat is on Friday evenings at 6 pm at our rabbis’ home (please contact us for directions).
  • The annual meeting of The New Shul community will be on Sunday March 6 at 10:30 am. All are invited.
  • Purim begins on Wednesday evening March 16. Join us in The New Shul parking lot at 7 pm for our megillah reading and shpiel.