The Parsha Discussion: Naso: Nazir — Sacred or Sinner?

Posted by Alex Israel on May 23, 2018
Topics: The Parsha Discussion, Naso, Bamidbar (Numbers)

The Nazirite is an individual who took a vow not to drink wine, to cut his or her hair, nor to become ritually defiled by contact with the dead.

  • Why would a person take such a vow?
  • Why would an individual seek to remove themselves from wine, haircuts and impurity?
  • Is the Nazirite considered as a holy person? Is this behaviour lauded and recommended or is it a fringe allowance for a person who needs religious intensity?

This Nazirite is disputed in the Talmud, but the discussion takes a wider view, discussing ascetism in general. Is self-denial a recommended religious course of action?

Click here to read more from Rabbi Alex Israel in this week’s Parsha Discussion on Naso: Nazir – Sacred or Sinner?

Please note that if you are printing The Parsha Discussion on US paper, please select the option “fit to print”.

About Alex Israel

Alex teaches Bible at Pardes and is the Director of the Community Education Program and the Summer Program. Alex was born and raised in London. He holds degrees from London School of Economics, the Institute of Education London and Bar-Ilan University. Alex studied at Yeshivat Har Etzion under Rav Aharon Lichtenstein and Rav Yehudah Amital, and gained Rabbinic ordination from the Israeli Rabbinate. Click here to read more.

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