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Reading the Bible Very Slowly : Shemini, שְּׁמִינִי (Eighth), Leviticus 9:1-11:47

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Shemini, Sh’mini, or Shmini (שְּׁמִינִי — Hebrew for "eighth,” the third word, and the first distinctive word, in the parashah) is the 26th weekly Torah portion (פָּרָשָׁה, parashah) in the annual Jewish cycle of Torah reading and the third in the book of Leviticus. It constitutes Leviticus 9:1–11:47. The parashah is made up of 4,670 Hebrew letters, 1,238 Hebrew words, and 91 verses, and can occupy about 157 lines in a Torah Scroll (סֵפֶר תּוֹרָה, Sefer Torah).[1]

Jews in the Diaspora read it the 25th or 26th Sabbath after Simchat Torah, generally in late March or April. In years when the first day of Passover falls on a Sabbath (as it does in 2015, 2016, 2018, and 2019), Jews in Israel and Reform Jews read the parashah following Passover one week before Conservative and Orthodox Jews in the Diaspora. In such years, Jews in Israel and Reform Jews celebrate Passover for seven days and thus read the next parashah (in 2015 and 2018, Shemini) on the Sabbath one week after the first day of Passover, while Conservative and Orthodox Jews in the Diaspora celebrate Passover for eight days and read the next parashah (in 2015 and 2018, Shemini) one week later. In some such years (for example, 2015 and 2018), the two calendars realign when Conservative and Orthodox Jews in the Diaspora read Behar together with Bechukotai while Jews in Israel and Reform Jews read them separately.[2]

Parashah Shemini tells of the consecration of the Tabernacle, the death of Nadab and Abihu, and the dietary laws of kashrut (כַּשְׁרוּת).

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Monday, March 17, 2014 - 17:00
Black Spring Coffee Company -- 2930 Telegraph Avenue, Oakland more
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