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11 Shevat 5779 -
? Wednesday, January 16, 2019


Parshat Emor: While Still Fresh and Warm

This nameless man, born in scandal to a Jewish mother and Egyptian father not a member of any tribe, brought his claim to Moses who ruled against him. He was Jewish, but he had no place in camp or the world

Bus Order

David ordered a bus. He divided the cost among the fifty friends and wrote on the sign that each person would have to pay $32.

The Earthly Court vs. The Heavenly Court

I served in the Traffic Violations Bureau (TVB) of the New York State Department of Motor Vehicles (DMV) for many years as an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ), Senior ALJ, Vice Chairman of the Appeals Board and, finally, TVB Director.

Preparation is Key to a Successful Shabbat

"It is a Sabbath of Sabbaths for you, and you shall afflict yourselves, It is an eternal statute” (Vayikra 16:31). This is how our Torah sums up the upcoming experience of Yom Kippur: a Sabbath of all Sabbaths. Rather than use the more colloquially known "Yom HaKippurim," The Day of Atonement, the Torah reading of Yom Kippur morning uses the above term to summarize the twenty-five hour experience we are about to step into.

A Nation Of Ballerinas

Readers are always asking me how I have the strength to open my heart, to tell my personal story, my struggles, my pain. My saintly father, HaRav HaGaon Avraham HaLevi Jungreis, zt”l, taught us that whenever we have difficult challenges we should share them with others, so that they will be strengthened in dealing with their own tests. My father learned this from our Torah, which relates to us all the painful struggles of our Patriarchs and Matriarchs. “Ma’aseh avos siman la’banim – that which befell our forefathers is a sign for the children” – so that we too might be fortified.

Teaching Responsibility To Our Children

The students were eventually expelled from the school that they were attending, but the reactions of the parents were quite divergent.

Confession: Good For The Soul

Rambam says that when the sinner approaches Hashem he expresses Chatati Aviti Pashati; I think I am Mayzid but perhaps I acted B’Shogeg.

Must We Check For Treifos?

This week’s parshah contains the source for the halacha of following the rov (majority). The pasuk states: “acharei rabbim lehatos.” The Gemara in Chullin 11a says that this pasuk is referring to the Sanhedrin where the halacha follows the majority opinion of the judges.

Talmudic Risk-Diversification

The Torah tells stories of people who heard the voice of God and risked it all, However, for those of us who have not heard the voice of God, our sages suggest a more nuanced approach to risk.

Losing Our Children: Who Is Responsible?

I watch my children use blocks to build a large structure, observing the trepidation with which they add each block. As the structure becomes larger there is a greater risk of it collapsing, thus bringing an end to an hour of playful labor. I anticipate what will happen when one child adds a block to the top floor, compromising the integrity of the building and resulting in the collapse of the entire structure. The argument that ensues is predictable, as each child blames the other for “ruining” the fun. As an adult, I wonder about the need to attribute blame. Will assigning blame be instrumental in rebuilding the structure?

Daf Yomi

A Posted Picture Saves The Day ‘In Order To Avoid Igun…’ (Yevamos 88a)

Stop the Prayers!

Having trouble understanding what decorum should be in shul? Go watch (from without) services at the local church or Reform temple, where you can see how actual respect for a sanctuary is manifested.

Q & A: Praying In Other Languages (Part XIV)

Question: When reciting a berachah in English, does a person fulfill his obligation if he says “Hashem” instead of “L-rd” or “G-d”? Yosef

The Religion Of Evolution

Everything you see – from the flower to the bee, from the oceans to the mountains, rivers and planets, the sun, the moon, and the stars – all just sort of happened. No designer. No creator.

Q & A: Standing During Chazarat HaShatz (Part I)

Question: Is one obligated to stand while the shliach tzibbur repeats Shemoneh Esreh? I have observed that some people stand during the whole repetition of the Amida while others sit most of the time. Menachem

The Three Prayers Of Moshe

The first prayer of Moshe was Vayechal, where Moshe's petition was that no matter how bad bnei Yisrael were, the Egyptians were worse.

Slumbering Through The Wake-Up Calls

That which transpired during these past few weeks should have shaken us all. To be sure, traumatic events have been pounding away at American Jewry for years now - as a matter of fact, from 9/11 on. But few of us have taken them to heart. Something was happening and is happening in the world, but we choose not to see or hear. It's easier to attribute everything to natural causes because then we can go on our merry way and indulge in business as usual.

Q & A: A Mother’s Mitzvah (Part II)

Question: I am a single mother of young children. Their father has shirked all his responsibilities to them. I do my best for my children, but it isn’t easy. Isn’t their father in serious violation of the Torah by neglecting his children and not making any effort to provide them an education? No Name Please (Via E-Mail)

Vayeira: The Binding of Isaac

God wanted to establish the principle that children are not the property of their parents.

A Humbling Lesson (Part VI)

Though braggarts come across as conceited, their boasting often reflects a low sense of self-regard

TORAH SHORTS: Parshat Matot-Masai: Your Money or your Family

The tribes of Ruben and Gad by being more concerned with their animals than with their own families, doomed themselves, eventually being left with neither. Indeed, the tribes to the east of the Jordan would be the first to be exiled and, seemingly, lost to Jewish history.

Daf Yomi

Spared Possible Punishment ‘Those Who Are New To The Ketores’ (Tamid 32b-33a)

For The Love Of Money

Klal Yisrael was living in the desert. They neither worked for a living nor had any use for money. All their needs were taken care of. They ate mon that was delivered to their tents daily. They drank water from the be’er, the rock that followed them in their journeys. Their clothes were washed by the Clouds of Glory, and their shoes never wore out. They didn’t need money and couldn’t use it. How could it become their downfall?

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