Running On Willpower

A number of commentators explain that “chefetz” is a strong, physical type of desire while “ratzon” is a more subtle desire to do the right thing.

Mitzvos And Miracles

She would give them Chanukah gelt and donuts, maybe even latkes, and would try to make the festival as happy as possible. But it wouldn’t be the same without Abba.

Keep The Feeling Alive

Hashem wanted us to “seize the moment” and remember how we felt when we left slavery, in order to enable us to set our slaves free later on.

On Target

There was one man in a wheelchair, and some of the assembled were uneasy about leaving him behind. If they would begin pushing the chair, they would surely not make it to shelter quickly enough.

My Dear Deer

The Land of Israel is often called the desired land: “eretz chefetz” (Malachi 3:12), “eretz chemdah” (Jeremiah 3:19, Zecharia 7:14, Psalms 106:24), and “eretz ha’tzvi” (Daniel 11:16, 11:41).

Dealing With Anti-Semitism

If a person would sense that he is a noble dignified person, it would help him avoid falling prey to the yetzer hara.

Faith In The Future

When G-d said, “I will be what I will be,” He was telling us something not only about G-d but about us when we are open to G-d and have faith in His faith in us.

Why MetLife?

If we are dealing with the end of days and the knowledge of Hashem is abundantly clear to all, how could each nation think of deceiving Hashem?

Tefillin On Time

We were heartbroken. Beyond the cost, who could deny the holiness and sentimentality of a boy’s tefillin?

Jacob’s Three Names

How do we know that Yeshurun is Yaakov? One place where the equivalence is clear is a passage recited before the morning prayers.

The Judge Knot

Should the judge be strict and abide by the law, or make an exception because of the circumstances?

Family, Faith, And Freedom

Genesis is not a hymn to the virtue of families. It is a candid, honest, fully worked-through account of what it is to confront some of the main problems within families, even the best.

A Biblical Feast

Ibn Janach writes that produce is called “tevuah” because it comes at certain times of the year.

Living In Mitzrayim

It is only prohibited to dwell in Mitzrayim while it is under non-Jewish rule. The reason for this is because the actions of the people of Mitzrayim were the most immoral, and thus the Torah did not want individuals to dwell there under their influence.

Doctors Are Important, But…

When it comes to our health, hishtadlut often means going to and listening to a doctor.

The Future Of The Past

Joseph is helping his brothers to revise their memory of the past. In doing so, he is challenging one of our most fundamental assumptions about time, namely its asymmetry. We can change the future. We cannot change the past. But is that entirely true?

Holy Priests Vs. Unholy Priests

Rabbi Hirsch ties “komer” to the emotional manipulation commonly employed by idolatrous priests.

A Zos Chanukah Adventure

The bus driver signaled to the hordes of frustrated people at the various bus stops that he could not stop for them, but some brave/foolhardy souls literally stood in front of the bus trying to block its path in their frenzied determination to get on their way.

Trump: An Anti-Semite?

How ironic it is then that so many people call this great president, president Trump, an anti-Semite! Why is that so?

Joseph And The Risks Of Power

Mikketz represents the most sudden and radical transformation in the Torah. Joseph, in a single day, moves from zero to hero, from forgotten, languishing prisoner to viceroy of Egypt, the most powerful man in the land, in control of the nation’s economy.

A Real Toss Up

Not all appearances of “hashlachah” carry a negative connotation. Some connote throwing something deliberately to bring about certain results.

The Angel Who Did Not Know He Was An Angel

I know of no comparable passage in the Torah: three verses dedicated to an apparently trivial, eminently forgettable detail of someone having to ask directions from a stranger. Who was this unnamed man? And what conceivable message does the episode hold for future generations, for us?

The Torah-Style Casino

Abe started taking out the money from all of his pockets and passed it onto the two Russian-accented guards, who were wearing pouches. The two men looked bewildered and incredulous.

Our True Enemies

While it may be that these people pose some level of a threat to us, the vast majority of attacks have not been carried out by White Nationalists.

Changing A Name

Why was Avraham’s name completely changed and Yaakov’s merely added on to?

Good Morning, Sunshine

During the evening or at night, the lack of light makes everything appear mixed up and one cannot discern the differences between them. (“Erev” means both night and mixture.)

Unexpected

If a person relies on human beings, Hashem will remove His hashgachah and leave the person in the hands of those whom he is depending on…

Yaakov Avinu’s New Name

Note, first, that this is not an adjustment of an existing name by the change or addition of a letter, It is an entirely new name, as if to signal that what it represents is a complete change of character. Second, as we have seen, the name change happened not once but twice. Third – and this is the puzzle of puzzles – having said twice that his name will no longer be Yaakov, the Torah continues to call him Yaakov. G-d Himself does so.

Davening For A Miracle

We learn in this week’s parsha that when Leah realized that she was going to have her seventh son, and her sister Rachel would then only be able to have one of the Shevatim, she davened that her fetus be changed to a girl.

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