Friday, 7 March 2014

The Pleasing Smell of Vayikra

Parashat Vayikra describes many of the korbanot sacrificed in the Mishkan. I struggle to find this riveting and relevant but last year we had a fun and useful project, as seen here

This year I looked again at the description of each korban and thought about how we relate to them today. A phrase repeats itself in reference to the sacrifices, "רֵיחַ נִיחֹחַ לַהֹ" "a pleasing fragrance to the Lord". This phrase is repeated eight times in parasha Vayikra. 

Rashi explains:

pleasing: Heb. נִיחוֹחַ [This word stems from the same root as the expression נַחַת רוּחַ, “contentment.” God says: “This sacrifice] gives Me contentment, for I said [My commandment], and My will was fulfilled!”

I cannot pretend to understand how the smell provides these emotions to God, nor do I want to diminish the importance of sacrifices. But...

I only know which fragrances are and are not pleasing to me and most other people. And I like to avoid unpleasant odors. This week the girls made 'a pleasing fragrance for the family'.

Making odor eliminating disks:


baking soda
essential oils (we used vanilla)
small amount of water

We poured a large amount of baking soda (about two cups) in a bowl.

Then we added about 1/2 teaspoon of essential oils. 

Next came approximately a tablespoon of water.

And time to stir! (or rummage through cabinets in the foreground)

A little bit more water might be needed to able to stir, but the mixture should be as dry as possible. 

 Next the compound is placed in silicon trays to dry and harden. 
After two days, ours were ready to pop out (carefully). First stop, the changing table. The girls each chose their places to stash the 'stink-away' disks. 

One of the girls licked a disk (eww). I was pleased that I know the simple ingredients and don't have to worry about poisons like in many air fresheners. 

Ahh, a pleasing fragrance in the house! 

Shabbat Shalom!

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