Saying the Unsayable: Does Reciting the 13 Middot ALWAYS “Work”?

What is the difference between religion and magic?  Each makes the claim that events in the physical world can flow from metaphysically effective language.  Mages recite spells; sages recite prayers.  So why is it that the Torah bans magic yet mandates prayer? 

Keeping The Peace

Discord and divide in government has trickled down to the everyday man.

A Father’s Responsibilities

He suggests that the general admonition only dictates that a father may not actively enable his son to perform an aveirah.

Parshat V’etchanan

When Mashiach comes we will have a nechama, not just a consolation, but a brand-new vision of history.

A Day Of Transformation

The status of a vessel or a tool is dependent on its purpose.

Yehareg V’al Ya’avor

The following is one unique halacha that is associated with arayos (forbidden relationships): Concerning most aveiros, if one is put in a predicament where he must choose between saving his life and fulfilling a mitzvah he must choose to live and transgress the mitzvah. The Gemara says that arayos are one of the three mitzvos that are yehareg v’al ya’avor (one must allow himself to be killed so as not to transgress the mitzvah), along with murder and avodah zarah.

Memory: Our Secret Weapon

The concept of mourning is predicated on the idea that man inevitably forgets over time, diminishing the acute pain associated with the loss, allowing the mourner to move on.

Redeeming Relevance: Chaye Sarah: The Advantage of Disadvantage

Yishmael’s challenge was whether to come back at all. Having been so clearly rejected, why would he want to have anything more to do with his father Avraham?

A Diamond With A Flaw

The answer to the question on Rashi seems to be that the namesakes of the shevatim were in fact men of unimaginable greatness,

Over Spending On A Mitzvah

Since giving the machatzis hashekel will not change his financial situation, he is obligated to do so even though it is more than a fifth of his income.

Adding And Subtracting From The Torah

Rabbinic law is pivotal but it's important to understand which laws are rabbinic and which biblical.

Shabbos Mevorchim Menachem Av

Just as the moon waxes, wanes and renews itself, so has the nation of Israel renewed itself through the millennia.

Outcomes And Intentions

So if on the previous Rosh Hashanah, Shimon had a decree of a year of life, then there is nothing Reuven or any other force in existence could do to change that.

Voices Large & Small

Vayikra, "He called," ends with a mini-Aleph, teaching us that Moses could hear the Call because he learned at Sinai to listen to the other side of silence, the world's smaller sounds and the people he led

Parshas Chayei Sarah

Devar Torah on Parshas Chayei Sarah from the well known, Rabbi Aba Wagensberg.

Shenayim Mikra V’echad Targum

This week we begin reading sefer and parshas Shemos. The parshah begins with the words “v’eileh shemos bnei Yisrael habaim Mitzraimah.”

Pekudei: God Choosing Man, Man Choosing God

Parshat Pekudei concludes the book of Exodus, known for its great stories. What did they teach us?

Loving One’s Fellow

A gem from the Or HaChaim, one of the greatest Torah commemorated, whose 275th yahrzeit was last week

Humility That Leads To Majesty

He feared the people would have a change of heart and support Rechavam.

Spiritual And Physical Challenges

We must re-focus our priorities & our communal resources from Jewish defense to Jewish spirituality

Who Shechted The Korban Pesach?

In this week’s parshah Hashem instructs Moshe to tell the Bnei Yisrael that each household should take for themselves, on the 10th of Nissan, a lamb or a kid within its first year for the korban pesach.

Trustworthy

Ultimately our job is not to overcome sin but to transcend the pitfalls and challenges of life.

Parshah Behaalotecha: Moses and the Challenge of Adaptive Leadership

Adaptive leadership is called for when the world is changing, circumstances are no longer what they were, and what once worked works no more. There is no quick fix, no pill, no simple following of instructions. We have to change. At a certain point, Moses had to help the Israelites change, to exercise responsibility, to learn to do things for themselves while trusting in God instead of relying on God to do things for them.

The Rubashkin Saga (Part III)

PETA has a lurid anti-shechita history, They claimed Rubashkin the way the animals were slaughtered at Agri rendered them non-kosher. Rabbinic authorities and major kashruth supervisors deemed Rubashkin to be of the highest kosher standards--yet PETA declared otherwise.

Redeeming Relevance: Achashverosh and the Evil of Neutrality

When it came to the “Jewish question,” Achashverosh seemed to be completely neutral. So how could he be as bad as the man who destroyed the Temple?

Whom Are You Fooling?

Even the greatest of people must be wary of the dangers of their own passions and pursuits.

Behar: Why Does Land Have To Rest?

In this week's video, we look at Pesach, Shmita and Yovel and ask, where do we see Shabbat, and why does it matter?

The Shabbos Clothes Make The Man

There is a ubiquitous custom amongst the Jewish People to dress up in our finest outfits on Shabbos. This mitzvah is so special to the Jewish People that most Torah-observant Jews divide their wardrobe into two parts – Shabbos clothing and weekday clothing

Redeeming Relevance on the Weekly Parsha: Chaye Sarah

At the beginning of this week's parsha, Rashi informs us that Sarah's death was no accident, but rather a result of hearing about Avraham...

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