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Jerusalem, Israel
6 Kislev 5778 -
? Friday, November 24, 2017


To Ask Is To Grow

In Judaism, to be without questions is a sign not of faith, but of lack of depth.

What I Leaned From Playing Poker

Two husbands were there to instruct us in Texas hold ‘em – and we needed them.

My Father’s Photograph Of ‘Divine Providence’

As his bomber lost altitude with the ground rushing up, my father remembered his last thought: “How am I going to get out of this?

Acharei Mot: The (Surprising) Point of Yom Kippur

Yom Kippur is called one of the days of awe. What does awe have to do with forgiveness for our sins?

Sprints And Marathons

You perpetuate a transformative event by turning it into a ritual.

While I Was Sleeping

Even in the best of times, life is not free of calamity or crisis. But like the well-known Jewish expression goes: “It could be a lot worse.”

Metzora: Living Within the Community

while each of us is an individual, we are also part of a larger unit

Tazria: The Bizarre Purification of the Metzora

This week's parsha deals with the strange set of laws dealing with tzara'at.

The Master Plan: Scripted To Perfection

Predictably, my husband agrees and is fine with either night. But after reminding him that he steadily delivers a shiur in his shul on Tuesday nights, he chooses Wednesday, offering a topic related to the Four Sons of Haggadah fame.

Breakfast And Happiness (Part VI)

If you expect more, you will be less grateful; if you expect less, you will be more grateful.

The Rationale For The Dietary Laws

The ritual of kashrut may help us become more conscious of our responsibilities to live ethical lives.

Frogs Were Jumping Everywhere

I insisted that one decoration, a dancing sevivon (dreidel) man, remain hanging in recognition of the chag. Some in my family questioned the appropriateness of this decision. Was it proper to have decorations hanging in what would soon become a house of shiva?

Leading Well Begets Greatness

There is much in this episode that is hard to understand, much that has to do with the concept of holiness and the powerful energies it released that, like nuclear power today, could be deadly dangerous if not properly used. But there is also a more human story about two approaches to leadership that still resonates with us today.

Right On Time

So this is what she got herself into: serving chicken soup and getting bits of rent on random days. She couldn’t say it wasn’t worth it, as she was earning both a chesed and a little bit of cash.

The Sins of a Leader

Nasi is the generic word for a leader: a ruler, king, judge, elder, or prince. Usually it refers to the holder of political power.

We Are Family

He exhorted all of us to continue to reach out to one another each and every day because that is what our tafkid (life’s goal) should be. And because that is what Hashem requires of us.

Pekudei: a Giant Chiasm in Sefer Shmot

How do the pieces of this puzzle come together to help us understand how the Torah builds together?

Celebrating by Walking Tall

The account of the construction of the Tabernacle in Vayakhel-Pekudei is built around the number seven.

The Erev Shabbos Call

It is my family’s minhag, for many generations, to light the candles 30 minutes before shekiah, as opposed to the commonly held custom of 20 minutes. So I told my husband that those 10 extra minutes should not be an issue.

Breakfast And Happiness (Part V)

So goes the story about a man in the silly town of Chelm who visited a public bathhouse and found himself in a terrible predicament. Without the distinction of clothing, everyone looked alike. “Among all these men who look alike,” he said to himself, “how will I ever know which one is me?” He solved his dilemma by tying a red string around his big toe.

Vayakhel: What Does It Mean To Be Tzelem Elokim?

This exciting and daring video and challenges us to be more God-like in our actions.

Creating a Team that Builds

Vayakhel is Moses’ response to the wild abandon of the crowd that gathered around Aaron and made the golden calf.

A Tale Of Two Todds

I was pretty open [and naïve] about accepting dating suggestions. There was the Israeli that spoke little English with whom I could barely communicate, the brilliant scholar who I discovered was manic depressive, the frum hippie that was still more hippie than frum, and a slew of others – all interesting, but not for me.

Ki Tisa: Moshe’s Benevolent Chutzpah

The Jewish people commit the worst sin possible - worshiping a false god.

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