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September 25, 2016 / 22 Elul, 5776
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Letters To The Editor


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Individuals are continually publicized as offering blessings and segulas (amulets) as a surefire cure for a wide variety of problems and ailments. Whether the need is financial, social or health-related, desperate Jews flock to these people with the hopes of reversing their ill fate.

Although many Jews believe segulas work, there is no evidence for this. More primarily, an authentic Torah view is derived from God’s words alone. And based on God’s words, these practices are not Jewish values. In fact, God prohibits such practices due to their powerless nature. Tosefta Shabbos (chap. 7) specifically refers to wearing red strings as “ways of the Emorites” – an idolatrous culture.

Prophecy ended with Malachi; no one today can guarantee God’s response. It is therefore an outright lie to say, “Do such and such an act, and God will respond.” Such charlatans build up the hopes of the unknowing masses and then shatter their dreams when no changes materialize.

To know Judaism and Torah, study God’s words. Dismiss all else, as we are commanded not to add or subtract from the Torah (Deut. 13:1). If you are in need, God can hear you from any location. “Any place you mention My name, I will come to you and bless you” (Exodus 20:21).
Rabbi Marshall Gisser
(Via E-Mail)

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