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Posted on: October 4th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
During the reign of King Solomon, the Nation of Israel was at its prime. We lived in peace in our own homeland. A Jewish government ruled over the country from the majestic city of Jerusalem. All of the people gathered for the Festivals at the Temple three times a year. Jewish law went forth from the Sanhedrin. Prophets communicated the word of the Lord to the Nation and the world. A powerful Jewish army guarded the country’s borders. Torah was studied in great academies of learning. Hebrew was spoken on the street. The leaders of foreign nations flocked to Jerusalem to pay tribute to the Jews.
Posted on: October 3rd, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
There is a special mitzvah on Sukkot to be “ach samaoch.” Only joyous. It is a happiness not dependent on anything external, beyond definition and words. Just to be absolutely joyous in one’s love and worship of G-d. Rabbi Kook describes the sukkah as a whirlpool of joyous energy which is constantly changing each second, reaching ever-higher levels of joy and attachment to G-d.
Posted on: October 2nd, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
To rectify the blemish caused by galut, the Diaspora Jew has to stop being in exile and join the ingathered. He has to actualize the words of his daily prayers, “And gather us together from the four corners of the earth” by getting on a plane.
Posted on: September 30th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
If it did it would die. Just the way the Diaspora is destined to die. The etrog tree doesn’t belong in Brooklyn. The climate isn’t right for it. It’s the same with the lulav, hadasim, and aravot. The four species which we are commanded to take for ourselves on the Festival of Sukkot are indigenous to Eretz Yisrael, just as the Torah is indigenous to Eretz Yisrael, and the Jewish People are indigenous to Eretz Yisrael. We belong in Eretz Yisrael. All of the holidays are intrinsically connected to Eretz Yisrael. The Torah was designed and fashioned by the Almighty to be observed in Eretz Yisrael.
Posted on: September 28th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
One of Rav Kook's public proclamations, sent out all over the Diaspora, years before the Holocaust, was entitled, “The Great Call”: "To the Land of Israel, gentlemen, to the Land of Israel! Let us utter this appeal in one voice, in a great and never-ending cry."
Posted on: September 27th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
L eading up to the holiday of Sukkot, we’ll wrap up our condensed look at Rabbi Kook’s teachings on t’shuva with a few blogs on two of the holidays most important themes – Eretz Yisrael and Torah.
Posted on: September 24th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Inspired by the Holy Nation of Israel, mankind will abandon its vain and misguided paths, and a mighty spirit of t’shuva will be ignited throughout the world.
Posted on: September 23rd, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Rabbi Kook’s advice is to set out correcting the transgressions of the past which are within the person’s reach to correct. This will set into motion a snowball of t’shuva whose inner force will lead him to correct matters more and more difficult, until he succeeds in redressing all wrongs.
Posted on: September 21st, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
The more you learn Torah, the more t’shuva you will be inspired to do — and the more t’shuva you do, the more Torah you are able to learn.
Posted on: September 20th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Sudden t’shuva is different. It seems to come about all at once with superhuman energy and willpower.
Posted on: September 19th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Rabbi Kook has good news. If you are a loser, all is not lost. You too can be a winner. You too can succeed. How? Through t’shuva.
Posted on: September 14th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Simply put, to the initiate, the pain that comes with t’shuva is scary. The baal t’shuva is the man of courage. He is the true hero. He is the one prepared to set out on the greatest journey in life.
Posted on: September 13th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Only t’shuva can reconnect the sinner with God. Only t’shuva can restore the harmony between a man’s soul and the world. Only t’shuva can wipe away the sins which prevent a man from being a positive contributor to life.
Posted on: September 12th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
When you are sick, do you go to the doctor, or the student of the doctor? So why go to Uman where Rebbe Nachman is buried, when you could go to the cities in Israel where his teachers are buried?
Posted on: September 11th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Rabbi Kook explains that this misplacing of priorities between the means and the goal stems from the sin of the earth during the days of Creation. By understanding the depth of this teaching, we can learn to be happy, not only when we finally attain our goals and ideals, but also at every moment of our lives.
Posted on: September 10th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Even if you haven’t yet atoned for all of your sins, Don’t worry! Be Happy! As long as you are sincerely trying, this is what really counts.
Posted on: September 7th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Dear Friends, the clock is ticking down to Rosh HaShanah. You can hear the shofars blasting all over the world. T’shuva may seem like a towering mountain too high to climb, but it’s really not as hard as you think.
Posted on: September 6th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
Today, the “evil thing” in our communities and homes is the onslaught of immodest websites and images on the Internet.
Posted on: September 5th, 2012Blogs → Felafel on Rye
The true champions of life are not the basketball players, not the Hollywood stars, not even the Prime Ministers and Presidents. The real heroes are the masters of t’shuva.
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