Interfaith Va-Yikra

Discussion in 'Interfaith Parsha Project' started by pohaikawahine, Mar 27, 2006.

  1. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    well we are starting the parshas of Leviticus which should be fun because both Bandit and I have our copies of Mary Douglas's book "Leviticus as Literature" which helps us look at the actual structure of the book itself. In my copy of the Five Books of Moses with commentary by Robert Alter, he introduces Leviticus with comments that refernce Mary Douglas and I'll also be using the JPS Hebrew-English TANAKH....bandit sent me a note that he'll be pretty busy with spring and summer activities and will not be able to visit the thread as often as he would like, so I'll try to keep up with the Parshas even if they are not as complete as I would like and won't always have that great perspective of bandit .... and of course anyone else that wants to start a parsha or just add thoughts we all hope to see this grow in perspective .... Dauer's ideas on an interfaith parsha are reflected in one of the introductory threads and are still the basis for this dialogue even though it has boiled down to bandit and I lately ....

    on another thread someone posted a piece on David and Goliath and said that David picked five stones from a stream (these five stones represented the 5 Books of Moses or the Torah) and chose one that he placed in his slingshot which hit Goliath in the middle of the forehead, the location of the third eye .... the place of seeing .... and I was thinking which of the five books helps us to open the third eye ??.... the place of seeing and knowing .... the place of revelations and visions .... maybe it is all five books together and perhaps it is the oral Torah .... the concept of parshas or cycling through the entire Torah on a regular cyclical basis keeps taking us a little deeper and deeper into the meanings as we age and hopefully grow with wisdom .... we each offer a piece of the knowledge and together we can all see a little better, see a little farther, become a little more knowing .... so let's continue .......

    I read a reference about the name of this parsha Va-Yikra which means "to call" in Hebrew .... according to Rabbi Noson Weisz in his deeper insight on the weekly parsha (with a philosophical and kabbalistic perspective) "if you read the text in the original Hebrew you can see that the world is written with a midget sized aleph. This lends the word a surface resemblance to a different Hebrew word - vayikor, which means 'to chance upon'. "

    Va-Yikra starts with "and He called to Moses and the Lord spoke to him from the Tent of Meeting" .... then we start with offerings (burnt offerings) animals, birds, grains etc with details on how the offering is to be prepared in such as way as to offer "a fragrant order to the Lord". ...

    Leviticus 3 has a section related to instructions regarding the fat or suet that covers the innards and is on the innards including the kidneys and the lobs on the liver which Mary Douglas speaks to in her book .... she sees a system that corresponds the part of the animal corresponding to the tripartite structure of the Tabernacle - the Holy of Holies, sanctuary and outer court - Mount Sinai as it is represented in Exodus- the summit, the middle perimeter of dense cloud (this is the suet area) (restructed to Aaron, his sons and the seventy elders) and the foot of the mountain ...

    I personally see all of it also describing the human body and the brain, the tripartite structure of the brain and its limbic system .... this is where I started with this thread, the stone of David that hit Goliath in the middle of the forehead .... awakening the third eye, also known as the pineal gland or the ephiphisis (that place that we meet g-d face-to-face) ....

    I have another thought on Leviticus, but I don't know if it will pan out until I read further .... the concept of what one can eat and not eat, wear and not wear .... etc.... corresponds closely to the concept of what fish, animal, plants are protected by different clans in other culture when members of the clan are prohibited from killing or eating certain species (also a great form of preservation of the species) .... these kapu's (forbidden activities) are so strong that I have know of elders who got deathly sick when some of the younger members of their families don't respect this 'kapu' and have eaten certain fish that are 'kapu' to their clan .... likewise I have a "shark belt" given to me by a member of a "shark clan" from the Marshall Islands and this clan protects the shark and is protected in return .... although others have seen this as forms of worshipping idols, in reality it is an ancient practice of preservation ....

    the symbol of the pig is also interesting and the whole concept of eating or not eating pork .... the head of the wild pig resembles the shape of the mountain top (as seen from a distance) and each part of the head is connected with a space on the mountain .... the summit in hawaiian would represent the "forest of the gods" or "wao akua" .... a wild place seldom accessed by man .... what does all of this mean .... to reach the summit of the mountain one must be highly spiritual and live a balanced life (be 'pono') .... in some pacific cultures the head of the pig is highly prized and given to the high chief or the chief that represents the top of the seven elders .... so I am entering Leviticus trying my best to see beyond the words and the details of ritual .... he hawai'i au, poh
     
  2. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    Hello Pohaikawahine:)

    i must say after reading the first 3 chapters, i am real grossed out. so i had to take it from a different perspective & found looking at the reason & type of sacrifice with a purpose or i would be spitting my own gutts out & going up in smoke.

    i was trying to see this from your post on fragrant order that went up in smoke.

    ascending offering - smoke from the fire
    Five varieties of meal offering-
    peace offering- i think someone ate something for this
    sin offering- atonement
    guilt offering- when in doubt of betryal of God or betrayal of God through swearing falsely to defraud a brother.

    there is a good Q & A at chabad here: korbanot

    but even the answers given there just do not satisfy me for all this sacrificial requirements. i had to pass on disecting a frog in school so there is no way i would be good at all this splitting animals, yanking the liver etc. though i see there is a reason for seperating the different types of organs...i am a little puzzled by it but it is still yukko.

    the parsha is where i will be spending my energies & extra time studying with you through spring & summer & it will be my pleasure.:)
     
  3. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    i am not sure about the 5 stones. i know he picked up 5 stones to use.
    as for a 3rd eye, well goliath sure did get one because the stone actually buried itself into his head. Goliath liked to be a big bully... that is in 1 Samuel & i think this what made David become so popular because he did it without any armor & a single stone in a sling. i will have to reread that story to make sure.
    studying all this is a cycle for sure & a healthy one:)
     
  4. Bandit

    Bandit New Member

    Joined:
    Jan 7, 2005
    Messages:
    3,172
    Likes Received:
    0
    you know something Poh?
    after reading through all this a few times, i am not seeing too much difference between then & now. a lot of this runs through Deuturonomy also.
    a lot of these laws seem to be mostly just keeping things in check. some of them are personal & some of them are social.

    for example if someone today were issued a ticket for wreckless driving they pay the fine BUT if it involves another party, then there is a whole reel of red tape.
    if drugs are found in the car, someone is going to take the heat & the guilt for it simply because of association (even if it were not theirs) & because the law says so. then at the time of court they get their chance to plead guilty or explain.

    these people were making sacrifices for atonement & supposedly this was the penalty that removed the guilt. i am kind of seeing these sacrifices more as money in exchange for a sin, or guilt & no one is really asking questions, they just see that it is all part of the law(s) system & so they abide or pay a penalty.

    if i look at this guilt offering, i see that a lost article found, funds witheld, or robbery- needs to be returned, but there is also an offering made called a guilt offering. just returning the article or giving witheld payment was not good enough. i still see this today in what we call 'lost & found' & _____ (cant think of the word). some people will take it to lost & found & some people will keep the article that they find.
    there is even a principal adding fifths, until the day he repents of the guilt.

    i am thinking some of the food laws could be for health reasons & perhaps you are correct, there is some kind of preservation of animals invloved that we are not seeing yet. i think we have entered a different part of the maze.
     
  5. pohaikawahine

    pohaikawahine Elder Member

    Joined:
    Aug 3, 2005
    Messages:
    660
    Likes Received:
    0
    bandit had a great idea that we should put all of the parshas for Leviticus on one thread .... so I'm going to start a new one with the title of Leviticus Parshas .... see you there, aloha nui, poh
     

Share This Page