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Our Beth Ruach congregation is built on the values of the Torah and the Talmud, and we are united in our faith in Judaism and our support of Israel.

We support our congregation through Torah learning, Shabbat dinners, Jewish holidays, celebrations, and life-long learning of our Jewish education to all ages.

Our congregation is made up of primarily interfaith families due to the rise in Jewish people marrying outside of their faith. As such, while grounded in Judaism, our congregation welcomes their spouses of all faiths and those with no faith to join us in creating a diverse, vibrant spiritual community of individuals and families.

Through our teachings, work, and embrace, we aspire to keep the Jewish faith and traditions alive within these interfaith unions and be cherished by their extended families so that it may remain vibrant and alive into future generations.

We are affiliated with the Universal Oneness United Faith Canada. 

Universal Oneness United Faith Canada (“UOUFC”) is a spiritual center that welcomes people from‎ all faiths and those of no faith. The UOUFC works to break down the barriers of religious intolerance. Congregation Beth Ruach is the Jewish interfaith branch of the UOUFC and is the ‎community that Rabbi David Gellman serves.

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TESTIMONIAL—

“I’ve known David practically my whole life, and he knew my mom and my family, so he was the obvious choice to provide the funeral service for my mother, Miriam Stein. He did a very, very nice job, was very personal, and made sure everyone was included—as I knew he would. Thank you, David.”

Helen B.

The Rabbi’s Weekly Commentary-April 13, 2024

The path to purification

Greetings friends

Remember, it is never too late to find your best self. Do not lose sight of who you are or who you can be. You can be anyone and anything. You are the only limiting force in your life. It is fear that drives us deeper into restrictive, painful ego states and away from a direct experience of True Nature and, nine times out of ten, that true nature is a loving, connected being. We have had enough separation and division, and we will read about that again today. So much of our world came together as we were blessed with a visible solar eclipse – an inspiring new moon event. This one took place on the new moon that proclaimed the new year according to the bible and set in motion the ability to create the world you want, which you will seal with the holiday on the full moon – Passover, freedom.
And while we patiently wait for freedom for all, we also await the freedom of the hostages – elderly and babies – none soldiers, but all victims of having been born Jewish. What a crime! What a divisive, sad state the world has degenerated into.  
Thankfully, we are only ten days away from the festival of unleavened bread – the Festival of Freedom, and we should all be clinging to our right to be free like never before.
A free world with free choice is a unifying force, not a dividing one.
Last week, we saw the creation of the priesthood—what should have been a servant but which has become a master. So this week, we return to the book of rules, rituals, and laws—the book of the priest. There is nothing here for the typical reader. This is a manual.
This week, we enter the world of contagion, contamination, and purification – and normally, this week’s and next week’s are read together. But this year, in a leap year, they are not, which is not about cure but about the ability to return to the tribe. The ability to return is essential to the entire ethos of Judaism. You really see it next week. This week is just the beginning.

 

We are immediately thrust into the world of pure and impure – the division that defines this book and continues to divide society. We see that a woman who gives birth to a child goes through a period of ritual impurity and must be purified, but we see the length of time to purify is twice for a daughter what it is for a son.

 

How have we carried that on in our views? We take the very act of giving birth — the most natural event in the world and, to many, the closest man gets to having creator-ship, like a god – and it makes a woman unclean. And we have filled the definition of unclean with only negativity. She is to make a sacrifice for her purification, and it is called an “offense offering” because the period of impurity due to blood can be offensive to the sacredness of the temple because of the status of blood, but we translate it as “sin offering.” No sin has been committed.

 

This has been a haunting moment for interpretation and treatment.

 

We are also going to see that you can catch disease, and you can catch holiness – two sides of the same coin – conditions that are catchable. We see that impurity spread to homes and other objects, not unlike how we approach life, as it is filled with what seems to be a cornucopia of immediate contagion.

 

But this is not about the cure; the cure is a given. This is about purification and reunification. This and next week’s reading is about the return of the former impure to the group. This strikes at the heart of the Jewish tenet of teshuvah – the return.

 

We are going to see it is not the sacrifice that is important – it is the steps of purification – hyssop and living water – still in use after all these years. We now know living water as holy water – sure to greet you in every Catholic church the world over and hyssop – the biblical herb of cleansing, the herb used as a brush to mark the doorposts and lintels with blood. It also serves to remind us of the danger of gossip – that sometimes poison manifests from the inside out.

 

This episode will be posted on our channel. Click here to watch the Rabbi David Gellman Show in the 2024 cycle. If you are one of the people this was sent to by a friend and want to receive it yourself, let me know, and I will add you to my mailing list.
It’s not too late to let me know if you want to be a member of our house of spirit. There is no fee, but it will get you on the mailing list to continue to receive these weekly notes. Just let me know.

 

And, as usual, I want to thank you all for allowing me into your homes, electronic devices, and hearts – as you are all with me in mine.
Be well, be happy, be healthy, be free, be kind, be forgiving, be compassionate, be independent of mind and deed, be mindful of your intentions, and be good to yourself. Continue to celebrate freedom of choice in your life, and do not give in to the fear that is so prevalent. Enjoy the peace that comes from acceptance – and, as always, if you have any questions or suggestions or just want to say “hi,” please send me an email. I love hearing from you.
Remember, anytime you do not want to receive these anymore, please send me an email so I can remove you. And know that I truly appreciate you sharing your sacred time with me.
Enjoy and celebrate your life and the lives of others, and in doing, be safe my friends, be happy, and may you all sow the seeds of and reap the rewards of peace and love and miracles, and make sure you also celebrate your unique individuality and your incredible awesomeness. 
Continue celebrating love; continue celebrating freedom; send renewal and goodwill out to everyone in the world. It is an energy that cannot be stopped. And remember, your world is what you make it. Just wish upon a star, and continue to be a miracle in someone’s life, and light the light of love wherever you go. 

Blessings

RD

www.rabbidavidgellman.com
Respecting our past.  Putting faith in your future

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