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Parshat Vayikra

By Chana Engel

Do you ever hear voices arguing in your head?

One screams “hold back,” the other, “go ahead,”

The two opposite drives make your head spin,

And the battle continues ‘til one force finally wins.

Those two little men live inside every Jew,

There’s a good inclination and an evil one too.

One side is G‑dly, its pure without stains,

But the other’s animalistic, selfish, mundane.

In times long ago, when our Temple stood then,

We’d offer korbanot, sacrifices to Hashem.

Now we don’t have an altar, where animals are burnt,

So what’s the use of the laws upon laws that are learnt?

Because this practice isn’t so ancient, though it seems that way,

We’re still offering sacrifices each and every day.

There’s a home for Hashem in each of our hearts,

But this ‘Temple’ needs service, to put in our part,

To take that animal, that’s living within,

Burn it on our altar - dedicate it to Him.

When a better income is what you work towards,

Or when being in style is a focus of yours,

When you see a cake and instinctively run,

That’s your animal within, having some fun.

Earn money, no problem, but use it to share,

Choose stylish, yet dignified, clothing to wear,

Hold back for a minute; eat your cake with a plate,

It’s the animal that doesn’t know how to wait.

Our worldly desires aren’t for us to shun,

They should be channelled for good, rather than numbed.

Your efforts and talents are a medium to use,

So you’ll find G‑dliness any place that you choose.


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