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Posted on: August 29th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
The Torah scroll is the nearest Judaism comes to endowing a physical entity with sanctity.
Posted on: August 29th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Chodesh Tov/Rabbi Hanoch Teller
Monona Grove was headed to “State” and the Silver Eagle fans went insane. The coming games would not be played in monotonous high school gyms erected in the 1950s. They were off to the University of Wisconsin's colossal Kohl Center where they would play before a crowd of 12,000. The games would be broadcast to a statewide television audience of millions, as a battery of newspapers and stations would be begging for interviews. The Kohl Center was just a short drive from Monona, technically in the same city.
Posted on: August 28th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Lessons In Emunah
It was a few minutes after sunrise. A new day had begun, and everyone was preparing for work, school and shopping for Shabbat. But the sun was setting slowly in our basement, as it was setting calmly for my mother-in-law. It was time for her to take leave of family, children and everything in this world.
Posted on: August 22nd, 2013Judaism → Columns → Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
The ancients saw the gods in nature, never more so than in thinking about the harvest and all that accompanied it.
Posted on: August 21st, 2013Judaism → Columns → Lessons In Emunah
Aseres Yemei Teshuvah. The mere mention of these three potent words invariably strikes fear into the hearts and souls of God-fearing Jews everywhere. Each weekday morning, the piercing cry of the shofar penetrates our collective consciousness and urges us to mend our ways, repent our transgressions and return wholeheartedly to our Father in Heaven.
Posted on: August 15th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
Fathers shall not be put to death for their children, nor children put to death for their fathers -- how is that compatible with the idea that children may suffer for the sins of their parents?
Posted on: August 14th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Lessons In Emunah
I returned to work after the pre-summer Memorial Day weekend and found on my desk a brochure sent from the American Friends of Kupat Ha’ir. It described a tragedy that had recently taken place in Eretz Yisrael. A tzedakah campaign had been created after the father of 13 children was suddenly killed in a car accident, leaving behind a wife and the 13 children – including a six-day-old baby.
Posted on: August 7th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
On the face of it, the test is simple: if what the prophet predicts comes to pass, he is a true prophet; if not, not. Clearly, though, it was not that simple.
Posted on: August 7th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Lessons In Emunah
I recently heard a Pirkei Avos shiur in which the speaker said that our spiritual DNA derives from our patriarchs and matriarchs. The great tests they withstood and for which they gained ever greater prominence was witnessed by the Jews who followed them, many of whom succeeded in overcoming great challenges as well. It seems that an individual’s great effort helps the spiritual strength kick in.
Posted on: August 1st, 2013Judaism → Columns → Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
These stories all have to do with the mitzvah of tzedakah whose source is in this week’s parshah.
Posted on: July 31st, 2013Judaism → Columns → Chodesh Tov/Rabbi Hanoch Teller
With absolutely nothing to lose, including his employment for the coming year, Dan Zweifel devised a strategy for a team that could not seem to catch an offensive rhythm and for players that had protracted shooting slumps and 10-minute-long droughts. His solution, his only recourse, was defense.
Posted on: July 31st, 2013Judaism → Columns → Lessons In Emunah
In an April Lessons in Emunah column, I wrote an article called “Learning to Dance in the Rain” about two friends who were very ill. One was in a hospice. The doctors had given up hope and the family waited with a heavy heart. But there was still One Doctor left. And He began to heal her. Slowly, the disease began to reverse itself, slowly it began to withdraw.
Posted on: July 25th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
One of the more unusual aspects of being a chief rabbi is that one comes to know people one otherwise might not.
Posted on: July 25th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Lessons In Emunah
It took a few months, but I finally summoned up what little koach I had to go to the Lubavitcher Rebbe, zt”l, for “Sunday Dollars.” I wanted to take my new baby to the Rebbe. Although he was about three months old at the time, I had not been strong enough until now to attempt a trip to 770 Eastern Parkway.
Posted on: July 18th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
The biblical covenant has the same literary structure as ancient near eastern political treaties.
Posted on: July 17th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Lessons In Emunah
A few short months ago I lost my one and only uncle. He was very special and a great void was felt. He left a wonderful wife, children, grandchildren and great- grandchildren – and, Baruch Hashem, even some great-great-grandchildren.
Posted on: July 11th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
Shakespeare is expressing the medieval stereotype of Christian mercy (Portia) as against Jewish justice (Shylock).
Posted on: July 10th, 2013Judaism → Columns → Lessons In Emunah
I knew it wasn’t the right attitude to have but Tisha B’Av 30 years ago was one of the happiest days of my life.
Posted on: July 3rd, 2013Judaism → Columns → Lessons In Emunah
My 40th birthday was looming, and the doctors were taking no chances. Every pre-natal visit was a repeat performance of the earlier ones. I was practically read the riot act, made to feel like the most irresponsible mother in history.
Posted on: July 3rd, 2013Judaism → Columns → Chodesh Tov/Rabbi Hanoch Teller
Brief synopsis: Monona Grove High School in Wisconsin was a most unlikely candidate to make it to the 1998 high school basketball championships, referred to as “State.” Especially so since the coach is a very young rookie named Dan Zweifel, who replaced the veteran Coach Verhelst. Andy Witte, the team’s star player, will do anything to please Coach V.
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