Shabbat Parashat Acharei-Mot/Kedoshim The Quest for Holiness April 28, 2023 – 8 Iyyar 5783

Dear Friends,

Our double Torah portion includes the parsha of Kedoshim [Holy].  The quest for holiness is ongoing and complex.  Only God is “fully” holy.  As human beings, we can only strive to achieve levels of holiness; to hold onto them or we to rise up in our levels of holiness.

Parashat Kedoshim includes various ways in which our lives may embody holiness. Surprisingly enough, those ways are not only ritualistic.  We learn, from the jumble of mitzvoth mentioned in Kedoshim, that he ways of holiness extend beyond the realm of prayer, beyond keeping Kosher, beyond daily reminders of our gratitude to God.   The ways of holiness extend to our relationships with people, to our business practices, and even to our embracing of a system of justice within our communities.  Holiness is the goal.  Our rituals are reminders of that goal.  In our day to day lives, our actions are a reflection of the value we ascribe to the goal of living lives of holiness.

Holiness is not only the province of the priests, of the Sanctuary, and of the extraordinary days of our lives.  Holiness is an everyday endeavor – a constant challenge toward which we climb, as best as we can, day by day. Torah and mitzvoth are our roadmaps and we strive to stay on track!

May all our “treks” lead us upward and guide us toward greater holiness and greater blessing!

Shabbat Shalom!

Rabbi Gilah Dror