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29 Tammuz 5777 -
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Redeeming Relevance: The Desert Bubble: Parshat Shelach

24 Sivan 5776 – June 29, 2016
The incident of the spies was a completely new and problematic transgression, it was not toward the rarified wilderness, but rather toward the earthly existence promised in the Land of Israel.

Hundreds Suffer Ill Effects From Heat Wave in Israel

8 Iyyar 5776 – May 16, 2016
The extreme heat wave in Israel has affected hundreds of people; Israelis are urged to remember to keep drinking water.

Arid State of Nevada Seeks Help from Israeli Agricultural Experts

2 Heshvan 5774 – October 6, 2013
Nevada is hoping to share best practices on water and crops with Israel In a campaign to revitalize its barren terrain. The desert-heavy U.S. state’s...

Temptations, Tests, and the Search for Spiritual Courage

15 Elul 5773 – August 20, 2013
Temptations are ways of teaching people about G-d and the incredible human capacity for compassion and spiritual depth.

‘Third Time, Ice Cream!’

14 Shevat 5773 – January 24, 2013
The Israeli phrase, 'Third time, Ice Cream' corresponds to the fact that the third time the ancient Israelites complained to God after the Exodus they got the manna.

Exploring The Hills

9 Kislev 5773 – November 23, 2012
One of the off the beaten track areas in Eretz Yisrael that I enjoy taking adventurous visitors to are the southern Hevron Hills. As we drive south from Yerushalayim, passing through the very cradle of Jewish history, with its rolling green hills along the Patriarchs and Matriarchs path or the “Road of Heroism" as it is some times called, we resist the magnetic pull to stop at Gush Etzion or Hevron and continue south, fully cognizant that more Jews walked on this path than on any other road in history.

Machtesh Ramon

5 Av 5772 – July 23, 2012
Machtesh Ramon is considered by some to be the most exquisite site on the planet. Located south of Beersheba in the Central Negev, not only is Machtesh Ramon the most spectacular geological sight in Eretz Yisrael, it contains within it some unique geological formations that are not found anywhere else on earth.

Mordechai Kedar: Tribal Democracy

23 Tammuz 5772 – July 13, 2012
Since Qadhaffi was overthrown a year ago, conflicts have broken out between the tribes and the main ethnic groups in Libya, Arabs and Berbers, and it was clear that the new political framework, in order to be an acceptable and legitimate system, must consider the social, tribal structure of the population and not try to fight it.

Chukas: Chastisement And Perfection

9 Tammuz 5772 – June 28, 2012
Hashem criticized His holy nation relentlessly, yet Rabbi Avigdor Miller, zt”l, observes that for 38 of Israel's 40 years in the desert, Hashem expressed no criticism at all. Herein is a lesson in Israel's greatness.

Depending On A Wise Sister

8 Tammuz 5772 – June 27, 2012
It is a scene that still has the power to shock and disturb. The people complain. There is no water. It is an old complaint and a predictable one. That’s what happens in a desert. Moses should have been able to handle it in his stride. He has been through far tougher challenges in his time. Yet suddenly he explodes into vituperative anger:

The Negev

29 Sivan 5772 – June 18, 2012
When contemplating the Negev, one must set aside any preconcieved notion of what a desert is. In Eretz Yisrael there are no rolling yellow sand dunes in softly rising and falling landscapes as unbroken as the sea. Far from being a simple expanse of sand, the Negev is marked by a mélange of cliffs, crags, boulders and dry river vadies. Where the Judean Desert ends, the Negev begins, an impressive region of low sandstone hills, rocky peaks (for example the high plateau area of Ramat HaNegev - The Negev Heights - stands between 370 meters and 520 meters), and plains rutted with narrow canyons. The Negev Desert is mesmerizing, beautiful and rich in geological history.

The Redemption

15 Nisan 5772 – April 6, 2012
In the land of Midyan there lived a pagan priest, Yisro, who was greatly respected by his people. He worshiped idols of stone and wood and so did his countrymen.

Israel’s First Massive Solar Farms Receive Licenses

21 Adar 5772 – March 15, 2012
Israel’s scorching-hot desert will soon be home to massive solar energy farms, bringing Israel closer to its goal of reliance on renewable energy. The Public Utility Authority on Monday issued nine licenses to establish Israel’s first large-scale solar energy farms.

The Desert of Death

19 Heshvan 5772 – November 16, 2011
Israel can put an end to phenomenon of death in the desert immediately by hermetically closing the border with Egypt

Would the Real (And Kosher) Sukkah Installation Please Stand Up?

20 Tishri 5771 – September 28, 2010
out half a year ago, my friend Miriam asked if I knew of any artists or architects whose repertoires included sukkahs. My thoughts immediately turned to the gorgeous sukkah my grandfather designed and built every year and to the retractable roof in the dining room at the Bostoner Rebbe's synagogue, Congregation Beth Pinchas. But for the life of me, I couldn't think of any artist who had developed an interesting aesthetic approach to the sukkah, which is the only Jewish experience (save mikvah perhaps) that completely surrounds us.

Moses’ Spies in Art

20 Sivan 5770 – June 2, 2010
Growing up, I used to enjoy reading S. Weissman's Little Midrash Says (published 1986) and carefully studying Siegmund Forst's illustrations of the weekly Torah portion. At the time, I had no idea how many of Forst's drawings were derived from earlier traditions of biblical illustration (many of them Christian), but I was particularly struck by the moral readability of the narratives. It was always a cinch to figure out who was a good character and who was evil; you could read it on their faces. The heroes were always smiling widely and the villains looked ugly and angry at the world.

Moses’ Spies in Art

Growing up, I used to enjoy reading S. Weissman's Little Midrash Says (published 1986) and carefully studying Siegmund Forst's illustrations of the weekly Torah portion. At the time, I had no idea how many of Forst's drawings were derived from earlier traditions of biblical illustration (many of them Christian), but I was particularly struck by the moral readability of the narratives. It was always a cinch to figure out who was a good character and who was evil; you could read it on their faces. The heroes were always smiling widely and the villains looked ugly and angry at the world.

Sound Advice For Troubled Times

26 Iyyar 5769 – May 20, 2009
The 10th Annual Rebbetzin's Conference sponsored by the Task Force on Families and Children at Risk, which took place last week, was one of the best ever. Rebbetzins come from far and wide to participate in this yearly program and leave with newfound strength.

All Dolled Up For The Holidays

1 Nisan 5769 – March 26, 2009
"My mother always made the Jewish holidays lots of fun when we were growing up, so is it any wonder I started my own Judaica business?"

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