The tribe of Levi reasoned that since they weren’t enslaved by Pharaoh, they weren’t entitled to share in the booty which was taken as reparations for the harsh labor experienced by their brethren.
Often we look at a person or an event and we are convinced that this is the highest level of sainthood and godliness, not realizing that G-d seeks what is in the hearts and souls of humankind and not their outward appearance.
And that may be why only we Jews who are commanded to be holy also have commands that seek to purify our hears and minds.
In BHA”B season, the age-old argument on whether to open or close the shul’s windows tends to rear its ugly head. The fact that such disputes occur in shuls is not coincidental.
The computations of the sofrim were not restricted to gematria alone. There are myriads of number-related secrets in the Torah.
While someone who is born Jewish is undoubtedly according to Jewish law deemed as Jewish, there is still the underlying prerequisite that ones actions also and perhaps equally, define a person’s Judaism.
If children grow up saying whatever they want, it will be very hard for them to restrain themselves when they’re older even if they learn how egregious speaking lashon hara is.
The Seder is not just an educational and intellectual experience; it’s also a unique opportunity to say thank you together with our loved ones to Hashem for the fact that He chose us as His nation and gave us His wonderful mitzvos.
Torah study shouldn’t be saved for our retirement. We should run to learn.
The Chovos HaLevavos teaches us that prayer without thought is like a body without a soul and a peel without fruit.
In order to properly daven for the geula, one must first notice the magnitude of the situation.
We must therefore constantly remind ourselves that it’s the Jewish way to stand by the side of a mate through thick and thin.
Stiff-necked people are creatures of habit, and those habits become especially rigid during times of stress.
I have always said that when a Jewish day school closes down, there is no future for the local Jewish population, and within just a few years the Jewish community will be compromised.
While this story is quite remarkable, we must wonder: Why did Hashem allow Ezra’s holy Sefer Torah to be defaced in the first place?
Many argued that it would be downright dangerous not to attend as their absence might raise the monarch’s ire after all the trouble he went through to accommodate their needs.
Concepts such as marit ayin enjoin us to be “inauthentic” and to put on a show for the outside, even when we know there is nothing inherently wrong with our actions.
It is inconceivable to believe that when we exited Egypt everyone in Israel had the same views on every subject and did not have the distinctiveness and uniqueness that make our people, and each individual, so important.
The Hafla’ah writes that since we want our prayers to rise to the heavens, they must be infused with a ruach, a spirit that causes them to ascend to Hashem’s Throne of Glory.
Because verbal abuse is more prevalent and generally overlooked as being problematic, the Torah makes the consequences more severe.
As he was typing feverishly, he by chance looked up from his computer and glanced at the dance floor. It was then that he noticed something remarkable.
One of the most important factors in delivering and receiving feedback is the relationship between the giver and the recipient.
How could Moshe rush to convert him so quickly? Because it was a matter of life and death.
Measure for measure, the Jews didn’t lift a finger against the millions of Egyptians who pursued them to the sea. Instead, the Egyptians drowned themselves by walking into the watery abyss.
He could have stressed the evilness of slavery or underscored the responsibilities of freedom... Instead, though, Moshe spoke about children and education. At that moment, in Rabbi Jonathan Sacks’s words, “the Israelites were told that they had to become a nation of educators.”
Clearly, the plagues weren’t the result of chance; they pointed to the hand of Hashem.
When looking back into our history we often find examples of people being in the right time and place, and making history that gave meaning and purpose to their entire existence.
As a young man, raised with royal treatment in Pharaoh’s palace, Moshe Rabbeinu didn’t allow himself to relax in splendor. Rather, he went out to his suffering brethren and shared in their fate.
Pharaoh’s refusal to believe in the miraculous power of G-d is evident even before the plagues begin.
What can be greater than the crown of Torah? After all, we’re taught, “Talmud Torah kneged kulam – The study of Torah is equal to all else.”