On April 11 2013 I was honored to present the following special class in conjunction with Uri L’Tzedek. The PDF source sheet is below as is video of the class.
With Purim nearly upon us, it’s time once again for the reading of the four special parshiyot. We’re actually in the middle, having already covered sheqalim last week, but this week we get the spectacular fun of zachor (Devarim 25:17-19). Invariably, this reading generates much discussion as to how this passage should be read (including the practice of repeaing the last verse – a discussion for another time), and the extreme importance of being in shul to hear zachor being read.
Most of these discussions are based on the preception that the reading of parashat zachor is biblically mandated. This assumption has bothered me for some time, as well as the cavalier attitude with which it is presented. Despite the lack of textual evidence or logical consistency, few people question the nature of keriat parashat zachor. As luck would have it, my new upgraded Bar Ilan CD just came in and it’s all all revved up for a test spin.