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Parasha Summary - Re'eh

An Overview of the Torah Portion

Written by the rabbi

Moshe presents to the nation the blessing of a spiritually-oriented life, & the curse of being disconnected from Hashem. When the nation enters Eretz Yisrael they must destroy all idolatrous statues, trees & places. G-d will choose 1 place for the Divine Presence to dwell & offerings to be brought.

He warns the nation against copying ways of the other nations. The Torah is complete & perfect, nothing may be added or subtracted from it. If a "prophet" tells the people to violate the Torah, he is to be put to death, as is one who entices others to worship idols. A city of idolatry must be razed. It is prohibited to engage in excessive mourning, e.g. cutting the skin or making a bald spot.

The signs of kosher food & the issur of eating blood or cooking meat & milk are given. We are instructed to be openhearted; in the 7th year all loans must be forgiven. A
Jewish bondsman is released after 6 years & sent away with generous provisions. If he refuses to leave, his ear is pierced with an awl at the door post & he remains indentured until Yovel.

The Parsha ends by detailing Pesach, Shavuot and Succot.

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