This week’s double-parsha Torah reading, Aharei Mot-Kedoshim, contains the verse, You shall observe My laws and rules that humanity will do and live by them – I am Hashem (Lev. 18:5). It is from this verse that we derive that the mitzvah pikuach nefesh (saving a life) supercedes nearly every other commandment, including the restrictions associated with Shabbat. A wonderful example of the encompassing power of pikuach nefesh comes from the famed ultra-Orthodox Rabbi Moshe Feinstein, z”l. Not only does Rav Feinstein permit a husband to drive his laboring wife to the hospital on Shabbat, he allows the husband to drive home afterward even though the woman is already safely in a doctor’s care (Iggerot Moshe O.H. 4:80). The rav’s reasoning: he does not want a father’s concern that the other children would be alone at home to be reason to delay taking his wife to the hospital until after Shabbat; so he allows the father to drive home on Shabbat to be with the remaining family. In this way, Rabbi Feinstein removes any stumbling block of halakhic concern that could be in the path of saving life -- and gives all of us a taste of the moderation that, indeed, is found in even the most zealous observant communities.