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An Act That Echoes Through Time

17 Heshvan 5777 – November 18, 2016
Avraham had many students, but there was only one who was truly devoted to knowing and understanding the ways of his teacher. That was Yitzchak.

Greater than Greeting the Shechinah

17 Heshvan 5777 – November 17, 2016
I would assume that if Hashem appeared to someone, he would be obligated to remain in Hashem’s presence for as long as Hashem remained.

Wings of Desire

Who are these beings? Men to Avraham; Angels to Lot. Why do they play such important roles in Genesis? Why are the stories of the beginnings of humanity so rich with unfamiliar characters?

Torah Shorts: Weekly Biblical Thoughts: Parshat Vayera

15 Heshvan 5777 – November 16, 2016
Abraham was not an isolationist concerned solely with his own interests. Regardless of how despicable the Sodomites were, Abraham started a surreal negotiation with G-d to save them.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Vayeira: No Questions Asked

14 Heshvan 5777 – November 15, 2016
Isn't it surprising that Avraham who prayed for Sodom's salvation did not protest God commanding him to kill his own son? For the Netziv, this was actually exactly what God wanted from Avraham. Why?

Abraham the Individualist

10 Heshvan 5777 – November 11, 2016
Abraham is a model of the Individual, of the non-conformist, of the person who will take a stand for what is right though it is unpopular. Indeed, Abraham carved his own path.

The Scorpion & The Setting Of The Son

10 Heshvan 5777 – November 10, 2016
Why did Yaakov act strangely by crisscrossing his hands when he could have simply switched Ephraim and Menashe’s positions?

The Five-Star Hotel Called Life

Is there any way to measure the value of life? Is it worth a million dollars? Ten million? A hundred billion? Is it even possible to put a value on our existence?

Lesser Of Two Evils

Why do we allow a Jew to shecht on Shabbos when there are other ways of providing the ill person with meat?

Aleph Beta: Lech Lecha: Was Abraham The First Wandering Jew?

God just promised Abraham the land. Why is it that, though God keeps reassuring that this land is his, he refuses to settle down?

The Phantom & The Man

We meet two different Abrahams in the Torah text and the Midrash. The spiritual giant, hero, and Tzaddik of the Midrash is almost a phantom in the written text. Which is real?

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Lech Lecha: Avoiding Too Much Virtue

While we read of tests of Avraham, it is clear that Sarah endured tests of her own. According to Ramban, she failed her test in her treatment of Hagar

Tefillah: A Meeting with Hashem – A Personal Request

4 Heshvan 5777 – November 4, 2016
B’chol dirachecha da’eihu, vehu yiyasher orchosecha – In all your ways know Him and He will smooth your paths

Hashem Hates Thievery

Rashi is troubled that thievery is being treated as the pivotal point of the world’s existence. There are many sins that are worse.

Redeeming Relevance: Parshat Noach: Of Facts and Narratives: Postmodernism and the Ohr HaChaim

3 Heshvan 5777 – November 3, 2016
The Torah itself presents parallel narratives of the same stories, thereby showing that the same events can truthfully be constructed in more than one way.

A Stolen Teivah?

As long as an individual is still alive and his possessions are still intact, they belong to him – and one may not steal them.

The True Measure of a Man

God doesn't need a slave to order and say: Build an ark! He could have made it in a second. God desires a partner. It is up to us to rise to that role. Noah's greatness was that he figured it out.

Parshat Bereishit

27 Tishri 5777 – October 28, 2016
While turning points do not often announce themselves with a clarion call, there are, nonetheless, moments in our lives when the potential for major change is evident.

Rabbi Aba Wagensberg on Parsha Bereishis

Parshas Bereishis is not only the first but arguably the most difficult parsha in the entire Torah. Let's begin...

Saper Vedere

"Saper vedere," - knowing how to see - informs our lives. Have we changed with the opportunities brought by the holidays> Have we kept our new lenses?

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