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March 27, 2008 - Image 45

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 2008-03-27

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

IF

TORAH PORTION

Rabbi Lee Buckman

Food, Glorious Food

Shabbat Parah (Parshah Shemini):
Leviticus 9:1-11:47;
Numbers 19:1-22;
Ezekiel 36:16-38.

Ann Arbor

the spirit of full disclosure, I should
confess that I don't stray very far
n my daily schedule as a rabbi, I
away from the Kiddush table after
am reminded regularly of a crit- services. But this does not change
ical truth: Every Jewish life cycle the fact that eating is not only a
event and Jewish holiday ends up, to
means of surviving, it is a message
one degree or
to God that we endorse and embrace
another, focus-
life.
ing on food.
That is why this week's parashah
While we
is so important. Parashat Shemini
should eat
presents the list of permitted and
and drink in a
prohibited animals, birds and fish.
way which is
It does so in the context of discus-
conducive to
sions on holiness; and by reading
good health,
it, we are reminded of the crucial
there is noth-
role that kashrut plays in our lives
ing
wrong
with
as Jews.
Rabbi Robert
this
fact
of
By making eating a holy exercise,
Dobrusin
Jewish
life.
In
we
elevate its importance and, by
Special to the
fact,
I
believe
extension,
the significance of cel-
Jewish News
we should
ebrating life. By limiting the foods
recognize and
we can eat, the Torah is telling us:
celebrate the important role that
"Embrace life but draw boundaries;
eating plays in our
enhance life, but know
tradition and in our
your limits!"
community.
These messages
There is a sig-
are critical, and their
nificant reason for the
importance goes
centrality of food in
far beyond eating.
our tradition, and it is
They remind us that
best reflected by our
our lives are ours to
customs at the time
enjoy and affirm, but
of death.
that we must always
I have often been asked: "Why is
remember the fact that our lives
it that the mourners are obligated
are a gift from God and come with
to eat a meal when they come back
responsibilities and obligations.
from the cemetery?" The answer is
We can fulfill those obligations
simple but profound: Just as saying
best by being careful of what we eat;
Kaddish is an affirmation of faith at sharing our bread with those who
this time, eating is an affirmation of are hungry; and embracing the idea
life. By eating a meal, we are mak-
that eating is not only a fact of life, it
ing the statement that we still want
is an affirmation of the joy of being
to live.
alive. ❑
And this is true for every life cycle
event.
Robert Dobrusin is rabbi of Beth Israel
There must be an opportunity
Congregation in Ann Arbor.
to acknowledge God through the
brachot, and there has to be an
opportunity to state openly and
proudly that we embrace and affirm
Conversations
life, in good times and in bad. What
Beyond eating healthier foods
better way to do this than to nourish
and sharing with the needy,
ourselves with good food.
what steps can we take to make
You might think all of this is just
eating a more holy activity?
an excuse to eat constantly and, in

I

Celebrate the
important role
eating plays in
our tradition.

As graduates of the Frankel Jewish Academy, we want to take
a moment to thank Rabbi Buckman for his commitment, pas-
sion, and vision for the Frankel Jewish Academy as he moves
on to shape the Jewish community in other capacities.

As students, we experienced Rabbi Buckman's tireless energy
at school each day. Some of us remember the founding year
of our school when Rabbi Buckman conducted one of the first
student government meetings in his minivan on the way to a
school retreat at Tamarack. Others remember the tears stream-
ing down Rabbi Buckman's face when we surprised him with
the performance of our school song, Aseh Lecha Ray, written
by Michael HarPaz. It was Rabbi Buckman who opened up his
home to students and community members on holidays and
Shabbatot. It would be impossible to enumerate the impact
Rabbi Buckman had on our lives; he shaped and reviewed the
curriculum, challenged our faculty, and empowered the student
body to maximize our potential. We cannot count the thou-
sands of emails, phone calls, meetings, and conversations through
which Rabbi Buckman worked tirelessly to facilitate our school's
development as well as to nurture our personal growth.

We write to express our gratitude to the man who put his
heart and soul into this school and its students. He created a
school of critical thinkers and committed Jews, a school that
will continue to produce the future leaders of the Jewish peo-
ple. His commitments to Jewish education, academic excel-
lence, and community building have enriched the Detroit
Jewish community.
We wish Rabbi Buckman success in his future endeavors, and
will always appreciate his contributions to our community.

Whitney Lee Aidenbaum 2005
Ilana Anders 2007
Deborah Anstandig 2003
Jared Anstandig 2007
Ruslan Avshalumov 2006
Vadim Avshalumov 2003
Adam Baruch 2006
Jeremy Baruch 2004
Jennifer Beitner
Ari Carmen 2003
Noah Curhan 2007
Emma Darvic.k 2005
Michael Diskin 2006
Brad Garden 2005
Jason Garden 2003
Adam Gardin 2003
Fallon Garfield-Turner 2004
Ilana Goldberg 2003
Susan Goldis 2003
Jesse Gross 2005
Adam Greenbaum 2003
Marissa Gruber 2007
Shira Hyman 2005
Rachel Jacobson 2005
Keren (Steibel) Klein 2004
Frayda Kresch 2003
Rachel Lachover 2004
Nathan Lada 2004
Ryan Landau 2006
Maggie Lee 2003
Jonathon Margolis 2006

Ali Mendelson 2004
Yael Mendelson 2006
Brad Millman 2007
Ariella Morrison 2006
Danniell Nadiv 2005
Yoni Nadiv 2007
Aaron Newman 2004
Bradley Otis 2006
Simon J. Pinter 2006
Avery Robinson 2007
Ian Robinson 2004
Eric Rosenbaum 2004
Alexis Sack 2003
Jill Salama 2003
Sarah Sallen 2004
Netta Schechet 2007
Leah Schloss 2005
Susan Schwartz 2007
Reisa Shanaman 2004
Ilanit Shtull-Leber 2003
Tani Shtull-Leber 2006
Addle Sodof 2006
David Steibel 2005
Caren Steinway 2006
Levi Stewart 2006
Ilyssa Tackel 2006
Alex Tapper 2005
Casey Weiss 2007
Jordan Weiss 2003
Monica Woll 2003
Michael Yashinsky 2007

I

1375 940

March 27 • 2008

A45

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