‘After the death of the holy ones’

Tomorrow’s “parashot” {פרשות} (weekly Torah PORTIONS) are “Acharei Mot” {אחרי מות} (‘after the death’) and “Kedoshim” }קדושים} (‘holy ones’) – which are the sixth and seventh “parashot” in the Book of Leviticus and are found in Leviticus 16:1-20:27.

The weekly Torah portions begin ‘after the death’ of Nadav and Avihu {נדב ואביהוא} (and that is the reason for the name of the ‘Parasha’), with the biblical commands to the High Priest with regard to his work on Yom Kippur in the Tabernacle.

The second ‘Parasha’ (weekly Torah portion) is ‘Kedoshim’ which means in Hebrew ‘holy ones’ and focuses on the biblical laws that define the relationship between man and God as well as the social norms a person should keep in order to become a ‘holy one’ (and that is the reason for the name of the ‘Parasha’).

One of the truly amazing things we witnessed this year is the occurrence of these two unique weekly Torah portions immediately after ‘Yom Ha-Zikaron’ {יום הזכרון} (Israel’s official Memorial Day), the one day in the year which is dedicated to honoring the memory of the brave fallen soldiers who defended Israel.

In other words, the combined name of these two weekly Torah portions creates the Hebrew phrase ‘Acharei Mot Kedoshim’ – which means in English ‘after the death of the holy ones!’