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    Holy at home & abroad – K’doshim

    cantor moshe oysher prayerSome faiths, but not Judaism, believe that the way to be holy is to lock yourself away from the world and avoid temptation.

    The Jewish approach as set out in today’s sidra is holiness as a part of, not apart from, normal everyday life.

    Holiness is decency, love, respect and responsibility at home, honesty, fairness and truthfulness at work, and helpfulness, dignity and charity wherever you go.

    The arena of holiness is not behind closed gates and high walls, but “when you sit in your house, when you walk by the way, when you lie down and when you rise up”.

    Holiness is not secluding yourself from temptation but meeting it head on, overcoming it and acting with moral courage.

    Where in the prayers do we acclaim God’s holiness? In the k’dushah that comes within a description of God’s work in history.

    Where do we emulate God’s holiness, as commanded in the sidra (Lev. 19:2)? In the midst of history, in what we choose to do and how we do it… even in apparently banal things like how we eat and drink and where we sit and stand.

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