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My Machberes

10 Tishri 5773 – September 25, 2012
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My Machberes

5 Tishri 5773 – September 20, 2012
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Why Me…Why Not me?

27 Elul 5772 – September 13, 2012
Just a few short days ago we were in summer mode, vacationing in the mountains, at the cottage, or on the road visiting family, friends or sightseeing. But with the start of September and school, we become all to aware that the Yamim Noraim - the Days of Awe – are upon us, that sobering period of time when a year's worth of our actions and activities will be evaluated by our Creator. His ultimate assessment and judgement will affect the quality and quantity of the days of our lives.

Mass Early Morning ‘Sack and Ashes’ Rally Against Haredi Draft

5 Tammuz 5772 – June 25, 2012
The assembly of at least 2000 began by saying Slichot, led by Rabbi Yaakov Chanun, who is the baal tefilah at the Munkatch beit Midrash on the Yamim Noraim. The assembled repeated chapters of Tehilim, verse by verse, and sat down on the ground in mourning just as Jews do on the day of Tisha B'Av.

Reb Elimelech M’Lizhensk (Part V)

23 Shevat 5772 – February 15, 2012
Baruch, from the village of Radovitz, was a sharecropper who barely eked out a living. His income was at the mercy of the infamously cruel Poritz, who owned the Radovitz environs.

Title: The Spirit of the Seasons: Insights into the Yomim Tovim

17 Kislev 5771 – November 24, 2010
Jews around the world are reflecting on the Jewish New Year season that recently passed. It seems that everybody is struggling with their resolutions to be better and to do better. All of us are worrying about the daunting lead-up to life's next chapter: Thanksgiving season. Xmas parties. Awkward situations, she'elot that make you blush to ask them. Bills. More bills. Tempers. Fourth quarter reports. Bosses cut losses by firing staff. Fear. Panic. You wonder what was gained by going through the Yamim Noraim. I have good news for you: The Spirit of the Seasons by Rabbi Jonathan Shooter can show you insights into the Yamim Tovim to soothe your soul and psyche.

‘Playing’ It Safe For Your Children

26 Tishri 5770 – October 14, 2009
A few years ago I wrote in this column that at the bris of my oldest son - held in a shul whose members were for the most part elderly - a wizened old man approached me, peered into my face and muttered in a raspy voice with a Yiddish accent, "May your children sit shiva for you." I was too stunned to say anything to him and just shook my head as he walked away. I thought, "nebach, he must be demented."

Sweating Over The Small Stuff (Conclusion)

29 Av 5769 – August 19, 2009
In preparation for the Yamim Noraim, last week I focused on Mitzvos bein Adam L'Chavero - interpersonal relationships that are often overlooked, such as the escalation of chutzpah, that has become emblematic of our society.

Don’t Sweat Over Small Stuff (Part One)

22 Av 5769 – August 12, 2009
There's a popular adage that tells us not to sweat the small stuff. I always thought that it meant we should not make an issue out of insignificant incidents that impinge on our kavod. When we are victims, we should categorize all this as "small stuff" and the best way to deal with it is to forgive, forget and move on.

Irena’s Vow – Honoring A Tzadekes

2 Tishri 5769 – October 1, 2008
It is customary before the Yamim Noraim, the High Holy Days, to look back at the past and strive to do better the following year, through Teshuvah.

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