Do you get goose pimples when you are scared, or a nervous stomach when you are excited? Isn't that strange? After all, it's your mind and heart that feel excitement or fear. Why do your hands and stomach react in this way?

G‑d created our bodies to be sensitive and to react to the things which we think and feel.

The Torah tells us that there was a time when people were so sensitive, that they could actually see a change on their skin because of something they said. When a person would speak bad things about other people over and over again, blotches of discolored skin, would appear on his body. The Torah calls this person a metzora. The word metzora is short for three words in Hebrew meaning saying bad things about someone else ("motzi shem ra").

The blotches or leprosy is a type of impurity from which the metzora had to purify himself. If a person discovered it on his body, he had to leave the entire camp of the Jewish people and follow the Torah's instructions for purifying himself. He separated one Jew from another. Therefore, the Torah tells him that he must stay away from the rest of the people until he becomes purified.

If the metzora has to stay alone, away from everyone else, who is going to help him become pure? The Kohen - priest - comes to purify him. The priests are kind and loving for their fellows. Listen carefully to the Priestly Blessing on holidays in the synagogue. They say: "Blessed are you G‑d... Who has commanded us to bless His nation, Israel, with love."

The metzora did not show love for his fellow when he spoke badly of others. He needs to be shown the right way to act — and the priests, with their strong love for their fellows, can do this job best. Because he cares for another Jew, even a metzora, the Kohen goes out from the holy Temple, the holiest place in the world. He walks to the outskirts of the city, to the place where the metzora is staying, to help him become pure and come back to his community with more love for his fellow than he had before.