Understanding Judaism, p. 163-171
The Nazir – Numbers 6:2-5 (ArtScroll Chumash, Stone Edition)
God spoke to Moses, saying. Speak to the Children of Israel and say to them: A man or woman who shall dissociate himself by taking a Nazirite vow of abstinence for the sake of God; from new or aged wine shall he abstain, and he shall not drink vinegar of wine or vinegar of aged wine; anything in which grapes have been steeped shall he not drink, and fresh and dried grapes shall he not eat. All the days of his abstinence, anything made from wine grapes, even the pips or skin, he shall not eat.
All the days of his Nazirite vow, a razor shall not pass over his head; until the completion of the days that he will be a Nazirite for the sake of God, holy shall he be, the growth of hair on his head shall grow.
(1) What is Nezirut?
(2) What must a person do after he finishes his term as a Nazir? Why?
(3) Explain the concept of the Maimonides' "middle path."
(4) If the Torah is opposed to asceticism, why is the oath of a Nazir and the abstinence from certain pleasures permissible by Jewish law?
(5) Why does Rabbi Blech call us the "Choosing People"?
(6) Can a person convert to Judaism?
(7) What is the Jewish attitude to the convert?
(8) Why is the Baal Teshuvah considered to be 'higher' than a tzaddik (righteous person)?