Parshah follows Parshah. Tazriah and Metzorah are often read together as one and are called ” Tazriah Metzorah”. However this is a leap year and so the Parshas are separated; so the posts are too.
If our previous Parshah concerned punishment for evil speaking, and its afflictions, this week the subject is repenting and removing the tzara’at affliction. This would be done by isolating the sinner for a week, and then cleansing his clothes before returning to the camp. If the affliction appeared on the clothes, they had to be washed. If it appeared on the house, those afflicted walls had to be destroyed.
My post this week is photographed on a background of a graffiti-filled wall that might have looked like an afflicted wall of biblical days. I, however, was enchanted and would never have chosen to damage or destroy it so quickly! Moreover, I wore an outfit inspired by cats. So, I checked the Parshah to see if there was any mention of tzara’at afflication in animals, and was surprised to find the only connection to animals was in the atonement of the sinner. He had to bring two birds, one as a sacrifice and the other to set free. This brought me to two conclusions: Animals cannot get tzara’at nor any other punishment, simply because they don’t speak evil – actually they don’t speak at all!
Our ability to speak is a wonderful gift, given to man, because of which we must beware and guard our tongues!