Imitatio Dei, With Science

I recently gave a lecture on Torah perspectives on genetic engineering. One classic source commonly adduced as a potential argument against such tinkering with nature is a rationale offered by Ramban for the prohibitions of interbreeding: והטעם בכלאים, כי השם ברא המינים בעולם, בכל בעלי הנפשות בצמחים ובבעלי נפש התנועה, ונתן בהם כוח התולדה שיתקיימו …

Automatic Agency

My weekly halachah column for parashas Shelah: Parashas Shelach (15:21) contains the commandment to separate challah: “Of the first of your dough ye shall give unto Hashem an heave offering in your generations.” The challah that is separated is given to a Cohen; in contemporary times, it is burned. Normally, separating challah is the prerogative …