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torah commentary
When you’re here, you’re family
Parashat Emor Leviticus 21:1-24:23 Since Judaism teaches that all Jews are responsible for each other, the hemorrhaging of the number of diaspora Jews actively involved in Jewish life — or even ide...
May 11, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 20 20 recommendations | email to a friend
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After death — holiness
Parshat Acharei Mot-Kedoshim Leviticus 16:1-20:27 “Would you like to identify the body?” The question struck me as more than strange. I was a new young rabbi, but knowledgeable enough about Jewish ...
May 04, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 19 19 recommendations | email to a friend
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It is up to us to stay morally vigilant
Parashat Tazria-Metzora, Leviticus 12:1-15:33 In this week’s Torah reading, Parshas Tazria, we read about tzaraat, commonly mistranslated “leprosy.” This was a miraculous skin eruption that would o...
Apr 27, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 26 26 recommendations | email to a friend
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Nothing to fear but fear itself
Parashat Shemini, Leviticus 9:1-11:47 This week we read the portion of Shemini, in which the Mishkan, the Tabernacle for the Almighty, is inaugurated and Aaron the High Priest leads the service for...
Apr 20, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 44 44 recommendations | email to a friend
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Silence is more than golden
Chol Hamoed, Pesach: Exodus 33:12 - 34:26, Numbers 28:19-25 The last days of the festival of Passover are dedicated to the splitting of the Reed Sea, one of the most dramatic and cataclysmic events...
Apr 19, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 37 37 recommendations | email to a friend
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With Elijah’s help, do it for the children
Parshat Tzav, Shabbat HaGadol, Leviticus 6:1-8:36 The Shabbat before Passover is called Shabbat Hagadol (the Great Sabbath), a phrase deriving from the last verse of the prophetic portion read on t...
Apr 05, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 39 39 recommendations | email to a friend
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Archives
Genealogy only goes so far
by Rabbi Shlomo Riskin
Feb 01, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 80 80 recommendations | email to a friend
Parshat Bo, Exodus 10:1-13:16 Why is the killing of the firstborn the final, and most significant, plague? True, it brought death into every household, rattling Egypt at its foundations, but certai...
A condemnation of one’s own making
by Rabbi Elchonon Friedman
Jan 25, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 92 92 recommendations | email to a friend
Parshat Vaera, Exodus 6:2-9:35 During this past summer I had the opportunity to spend a Shabbat with the Yeshiva High School boys at Camp Twin Echo in the Laurel Highlands. After Shabbat I stopped ...
Moshe’s curious mind
by Rabbi Amy Bardack
Jan 19, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 88 88 recommendations | email to a friend
Parshat Shemot, Exodus 1:1-6:1 A new Pharaoh has risen.  The people Israel are enslaved and oppressed, and their very lives are in danger.  Into this frightening reality, a baby is born who then be...
Our top priority: Service to G-d
by Rabbi Yisroel Rosenfeld and Rabbi Yisroel Rosenfeld
Jan 11, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 82 82 recommendations | email to a friend
The Torah portion this week relates a fascinating exchange between father and son. Jacob was lying on his deathbed when he turned to his second to the youngest son, Joseph, whom at the time was the...
Imperfect forgiveness
by Rabbi Jonathan Perlman
Jan 05, 2017 | 0 0 comments | 92 92 recommendations | email to a friend
Parshat Vayigash, Genesis 44:18-47:27 The story of Joseph and his brothers is a story of life and death. The brothers seek to destroy Joseph; a famine attacks the land; Joseph as Egyptian prime min...
A tale of two Yossis
by Rabbi Daniel Yolkut
Dec 29, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 103 103 recommendations | email to a friend
Parshat Miketz, Genesis 41;1-44;17 One of the most remarkable features of the laws of Chanukah is their focus on the home. The Talmud (Shabbat 21a) formulates the core obligation of Chanukah as bei...
Which is the greater Chanukah miracle?
by Rabbi Shlomo Riskin
Dec 21, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 115 115 recommendations | email to a friend
Parshat Vayeshev, Genesis 37:1-40:23 As we prepare for the festival of Chanukah — which commences at the conclusion of the upcoming Sabbath — it behooves us to revisit the significance of the light...
The name of a nation — Israel: preparedness and perseverance leads to triumph
by Rabbi Shimon Silver
Dec 14, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 121 121 recommendations | email to a friend
Parshat Vayishlach, Genesis 32:4-36:43 The Torah teaches us that Yaakov prepared on three fronts, in the face of the looming confrontation with Eisav. He prepared a gift, to hopefully soften Eisav....
Dedicated Ugandan rabbi gives us hope, inspiration
by Rabbi Amy Greenbaum
Dec 08, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 130 130 recommendations | email to a friend
Parshat Vayetzei, Genesis 25:19-28:9 Can you imagine, if, in order to make a meal, you had to walk four miles round trip to get the water, another couple of miles to collect the firewood, harvest y...
Do the math
by Rabbi Daniel Wasserman
Nov 30, 2016 | 0 0 comments | 142 142 recommendations | email to a friend
Parshat Toldot, Genesis 25:19-28:9 In my many opportunities to study the Torah with people, either in a group class or individually, I often remind people that as we read and study the verses we mu...