The Torah portion for this week Re'eh contains a number of very interesting topics.
Here are my takes on some, but not all to be found in Deuteronomy 11:26-16:17.
Why keep Kosher? Three answers. Purity. Making ourselves more like G-d. Less like animals.
To make a life form kosher for human consumption can be as very long and involved process. When animals are hungry, they simply consume other animals and/or plants. End of story.
To raise ourselves up above the animal level, we elevate ourselves from simply using other life, with no regard or respect for it by a wide series of steps to preserve the dignity of what we need to survive.
Newsviners who take original writing seriously will edit, re-edit, and then go back and edit some more to eliminate errors, and improve quality. It is no different with something as basic as food consumption.
Clarity in Charity. We are to give according to need, not affordability. The word for charity in Hebrew is Tzadakah. The word for righteousness is Tzedik. Both words come for the same verb root stem. To the Biblical mind, being charitable is being righteous, and vice versa.
When we give others what they need, rather than what is comfortable for us to part with we are truly being righteous by being charitable. It isn't about us, it is about them.
The trick is to position ourselves economically so we are in a position to be able to give fully and without reservation.
A Blessing and a Curse. When is a blessing a curse? When It isn't used for the greater good. Atomic energy can be used for bombs or for medicine. The technology is neutral morally. How we engage it isn't.
Take the high road when you are blessed with something of value. Use it for good.
Being Nice Versus Being Good. It is nice to be nice to others. When their agenda is nefarious, it is better to be good.
Be gracious to others. Never be a door mat for them to use to wipe their soiled shoes.
Be as nice to them as they let you. Choose standing for and doing good over being nice when forced to make a choice.
I do my best to be positive. When I can't I can't.
Evil only succeeds when we allow it do so. So don't allow it.
See Deuteronomy 12:28 on this one. "Do right in the Eyes of G-d". Words to live most abundantly by practicing.
Peace and Abundant Blessings to One and All.