Purim is on Thursday 17 March! Megillah (and more) at L1 Capital (48/101 Collins) and ABL (21/333 Collins). See here for details.

JBD – Jews of the Melbourne CBD is now on LinkedIn. Follow us here.

Times: Shabbat starts on Friday at 7:28 pm and ends on Saturday night at 8:23 pm. The weekly Torah portion is Vayikra and Parshat Zachor. Ta’anit Esther is on Wednesday; the fast starts at 6:01 am and ends at 8:10 pm. Purim is on Wednesday night and Thursday. AFL season kicks off on Wednesday night; Megillah readings available after the match.

Mincha in the CBD: Mincha is in recess for the summer. We look forward to opening up when people return to their offices and we have sufficient numbers. Join the WhatsApp group to stay across the latest details.

Study: The Weekly Shiur continues on Wednesday at 1.20 pm at Warlow’s Legal – 2/430 Lt Collins St. – and via Zoom. Current topic: More on employee eating rights. Details here and on the WhatsApp group.

Thought of the Week with thanks to Avi Gordon. This week’s Torah reading talks in detail about the sacrifices brought in the temple. In many respects, this area of the Torah is difficult to relate to in the modern world in which we live.

There is a well-known insight by Rabbi Shneur Zalman of Liadi who focused on the wording of the verse which discusses bringing a sacrifice. While one would expect the verse to say “adam mikem ki yakriv”, “when one of you offers a sacrifice.” Instead, it says: “adam ki yakriv mikem”, “when one offers a sacrifice of you.”

The essence of sacrifice, explained Rabbi Shneur Zalman, is that we need to offer from ourselves. We bring to God our faculties, our energies, our thoughts and emotions. The physical form of sacrifice – an animal offered on the altar – is only an external manifestation of an inner act. The real sacrifice is mikem, “of you.” We give God something of ourselves.

In essence, the lesson of the animal sacrifices are as relevant now as ever before. If we want a connection to God, we need to actually give from ourselves. We need to spend the time praying even if its early in the morning. We need to push ourselves to the shiur even when we are tired. We need to actually sacrifice from ourselves and offer up our modern day korbanot.

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