Parashat Tazria & Metsora
April 28-29, 2017 – 3 Iyyar 5777
Annual: Leviticus 12:1-15:33 p. 649-670
Triennial: Leviticus 12:1-13:39 p. 649-657
Haftarah: 2 Kings 7:3-20 p. 675-678
from TORAH SPARKS
By Vered Hollander-Goldfarb, CY Faculty
Following the painful event of the death of 2 of Aaron’s sons during the celebrations for inaugurating the Priesthood, we are taking a double-Parasha (1 week) break from Kohanim in the Tabernacle and learning a bit about purity. Purity is a state that can change, it has nothing to do with hygiene.
1) A woman who gives birth becomes impure (12:1-5). Interestingly, the period of her impurity does not seem to be contingent on her physical condition but rather on a certain amount of time passing after the birth. Why do you think this is so?
2) Starting in chapter 13 we learn about Tzara’at (usually translated as leprosy). Who/what can be afflicted by Tzara’at in this section? What organ of the body is affected the signs of Tzara’at? (13:1-2)
3) Who is qualified to determine that the problem is indeed Tzara’at (13:2- 8)? Note the terminology used to describe the status of the person. What does that tell you about Tzara’at?
4) It turns out that not only people can be affected by Tzara’at. What else might be affected (13:47-59)? Why do you think that great trouble is taken to isolate the potential Tzara’at and not destroy the entire garment? (You might want to consider that this was not written in our consumer society.)
5) After a person who had Tzara’at has been declared to be free of it (by the Kohen) he goes through 2 ceremonies as part of the purification (14:4- 20). Where does each one take place? What do you think that these locations symbolize? How long does the process take? Where is the Metzora (=person who has/had Tzara’at) during this period? Why?
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