Levi Chazen

Understand Well, My Brothers

The Jewish people in Egypt were so embedded in Egyptian culture, that when the redemption came, the great majority were unable to release themselves from it and had to be destroyed., 1/19/2007, 11:52 AM

<I>Shemot</I>: Down in Old Egypt Land - Why?

It was only when the Jewish people gave up any hope of salvation from mankind, and despaired totally of redemption, that they were able to come to an understanding that there is no other power in this world besides <I>HaShem</I>. For it is <I>HaShem</I> who brings down the mighty and raises up the lowly., 1/12/2007, 2:15 AM

<I>Vayechi</I>: Just Not Here!

"Please, if I have found favor in your eyes... do this kindness and truth with me - please do not bury me in Egypt." What was the concern that our forefather Ya'akov had about being buried in Egypt?, 1/5/2007, 10:44 AM

<i>Miketz</i>: Oh, Beautiful...

One does not have to be a rocket scientist to understand and see the future unfolding before us. The world today is so complex that any little jolt in the wrong direction could literally bring the house down., 12/22/2006, 12:18 AM

<I>Noach</I>: Forty Years

In our <I>parsha</I>, we are introduced to the concept of 40 and its link with punishment., 10/26/2006, 2:42 PM

A Lesson From Yom Kippur

Ten years go by, ten High Priests die - you would think someone would have gotten the picture., 10/3/2006, 2:02 PM

<I>Nitzavim-Vayelech</I>: The Unbreakable Bond

Know that nothing is lost before Him. All the beatings, cursings, gassings, and killings that the nations have thrown at us throughout our long exile will not be forgotten...., 9/14/2006, 11:33 AM

<I>Ekev</I>: It's All Written in the Book

There, in the midst of the Jordan, the water - as it disconnected from its source so as to allow the Jews to pass through - began to rise to great heights, towering over the entire Jewish people. It was at that point that Joshua stopped the Jews in their tracks and told them: I have an important message to relay to you all., 8/11/2006, 5:32 AM

Rules of the Game

The Torah tells us: "When you go out to war against your enemy...." And does one ever go out to war against one's friend, such that the Torah needs to tell us that you are going out to war against an enemy?, 7/30/2006, 9:07 PM

<I>Balak</I>: Try as They Might

As the Jewish people began their approach to the Holy Land after being in the desert for forty years, the nations began to sense, both consciously and unconsciously, that the Redemption was at hand. And they all pulled together to try and stop the process. , 7/7/2006, 2:09 AM

<I>Chukat</I>: The Slave Woman

The Canaanite king of Arad heard that Israel had come by the route of the spies, and he warred against Israel and captured a captive from among them. There is nothing new under the sun. , 6/29/2006, 4:37 PM

<I>Korach</I>: Lessons

The rabbis asked: Korach was a wise man and leader. What caused him to rebel against Moshe?, 6/22/2006, 2:23 AM

<I>Shelach Lecha</I>: A Lesson Still Not Learned

When one dwells on the apparently harsh punishment meted out to the ten spies and to the entire congregation, one wonders: Does the punishment really fit the crime?, 6/15/2006, 10:53 PM

Purim 5766 - And Still Going Strong

Some weeks ago, the president of Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, while denying that a Holocaust against the Jews took place during World War II, stated that there was indeed a "holocaust" that took place in Iran some 2,000 years ago, in which the Jews killed thousands of people. , 3/12/2006, 12:43 PM

Still Much Work To Do!

This week?s parsha should put to rest any arguments for the philosophy of sitting around and waiting for the Redemption of the Jewish people. The Torah commands us to build a sanctuary for Hashem, that He may dwell within., 3/2/2006, 11:58 AM

Parshat Mishpatim: In for the Long Haul

As if this weren't enough for one parsha, the Torah goes on to teach us the laws of stolen property and prohibition of deceit. From there, it?s on to laws applying to judges, witnesses, and defendants as well as those of false statements and capital punishment, etc. etc. etc., 2/23/2006, 1:23 PM

Time to climb the Mountain

An entirely different environment with our enemies??? What has the acting PM been smoking in his office? I suggest to the honorable actor that he go down to Gaza City by himself and ask Hamas what kind of a "new environment" he would like to see the Jewish people in!, 2/16/2006, 9:18 PM

<I>Beshalach</I>: Our Secret Weapon

One of the repeating themes woven throughout the story of the Exodus of the Jews from Egypt is the great <I>mesirut nefesh</I> (self-sacrifice) that certain individuals displayed for the sake of the Jewish people, and their great reward for their selfless acts. Eventually, these acts of self-sacrifice would spread to the entire nation., 2/10/2006, 12:47 AM

<i>Bo</I>: They Never Really Say "Never"

This is the cardinal rule brought down to us though our authentic Jewish leaders, Moshe and Aharon: When it comes to <I>Kiddush HaShem</I>, there is no 50, 70 or even 99 percent. , 2/1/2006, 11:40 PM

<I>Vayigash</I>: Oh Yeah, I Left Brooklyn

There is a Planner, a Master in this world, who has been returning His children to their rightful home. The exile will not last forever - and time is running out., 1/5/2006, 11:37 PM

<I>Vayishlach</I>: Time to Shed the Skin of Jacob

Our rabbis teach us that because Jacob bowed down to Esau seven times, seven foreign kings would rule over the Land of Israel before the kings of Israel., 12/15/2005, 11:47 PM

<I>Chayei Sarah</I>: The Cave Deal

After all the years that King David and his court tried to acquire the Mount, when the right time had come, it was, in the blink of an eye, turned over to the children of Israel. , 11/25/2005, 10:35 AM

<I>Lech Lecha</I>: Against All Odds

Surely, thought Abraham, we will be moving on from this over-populated area, Canaan, towards a distant Europe, which at the time was empty., 11/11/2005, 1:09 AM

<I>Bereishit</I>: The Song Remains the Same

So, once again, as we start anew our holy Torah, we come upon the famous first Rashi on the Torah. Even if we have spoken about it time and time again in the past, its message is timeless and its words have still not hit home for the Jews., 10/27/2005, 6:41 PM

<I>Ki Teitzeh</I>: My Friend, My Enemy

Our rabbis warned us not to take a liking to our enemies, not to make friends out of them, for if you fall into their hands, they will not have mercy on you. The best example of this is brought down in the Book of Kings, the story of Achav, king of Israel., 9/15/2005, 11:38 PM

I Have Seen the Fire

"A land that <I>HaShem</I> your G-d seeks out; the eyes of <I>HaShem</I>, your G-d, are always upon it, from the beginning of the year to the year's end." This is what our rabbis teach us: <I>HaShem</I> sees what the land's needs are and He introduces decrees upon it, at times for good and at times for bad. , 8/28/2005, 2:25 PM

<i>Devarim</I>: The Final <I>Tikkun</I>

Ever wonder why Ariel Sharon's insane plan of Disengagement was planned for the period of the 9th of Av, the day that was decreed to be a day of mourning for generations? Just a coincidence that it's taking place at this time of the year, and was not called for, say, in February or December? I don't think so. , 8/12/2005, 12:59 AM

<I>Mas'ei</I>: The Long Road From and to Gaza

From time to time, we have heard voices stating that Gush Katif is not really part of the Land of Israel, never has been, and historically, we have no connection to it. This week's <I>parsha</I> should put an end to all those false accusations, as nothing could be further from the truth. Those claims come only to weaken a strong nation., 8/4/2005, 12:32 PM

<I>Matot</I>: Not Over 'Til the Fat Lady Sings

When Midian faced the whole Jewish people of some 600,000 soldiers strong, the Jewish people were unable to overcome their enticements and they yielded to sin. Now that they were only 12,000 strong, what chance did they have of not sinning?, 7/27/2005, 4:19 PM

Roadblocks on the Way

Why do they try to stop us on our journey to perfect the world? The <I>Midrash</I> teaches us that after the <I>Mashiach</I> will be made known to the world, the nations will gather to him and hear his words of wisdom, and they will then take council on how to kill him., 7/15/2005, 9:15 AM

<I>Korach</I>: Symbols and Status

As Rashi teaches us that Korach was a clever person, what is it that he saw which led him to this folly? His eyes led him to error. He saw a great chain of descendants emerging from him. , 6/30/2005, 11:43 AM

<I>B'ha'alot'cha</I>: The Silver Lining

We find in this week's <I>parsha</I> the sentence: "Arise, <I>HaShem</I>, and let Your enemies be scattered, and let those who hate You flee from before You." Rashi points out: "'And let those who hate You' - These are those who hate Israel....", 6/16/2005, 3:26 PM

Behukotai: The Two Paths

...how grand it could all be if...we would have the arrival of our Redemption without working for it, without repentance, without doing our part. But such is not the way of the Creator of this world, and so we find in this week's parsha, the two paths, the two choices in this world. , 5/26/2005, 10:49 AM

Ringin' in That Good ol' Freedom

"It's all about freedom". So said President George Bush on his recent tour to the former Soviet Union...just look at where this freedom of the Bushes of this world has led us... people now, with nothing but time on their hands, will watch an average of some 6 to 8 hours of TV a day, which is perverting and eventually destroying society., 5/19/2005, 12:25 PM

Unmasking the Confusion

The Talmud asks: "What is Chanukah?" And it then goes on to explain why we celebrate that holiday. Without a doubt, if the Talmud would have been written today, our sages would be asking: "What is <I>Yom HaAtzma'ut</I> (Independence Day)?", 5/11/2005, 11:25 AM

The Poison Cup

G-d triumphs over the proud, punishing them though the precise vehicle of their arrogance., 4/28/2005, 7:52 PM

The Missing Ingredient

How tragic it has all become, as the wandering Jews continue to wander - this time, willingly., 4/20/2005, 12:01 PM

<I>Metzora</I>: Of Houses and Houses

This suffering is needed in order for us, the Jewish people, to make a <I>kinyan</I> (acquisition) of the Land. For what comes easily and at no price, is lost quickly., 4/14/2005, 3:49 PM

<I>Tazria</I>: The Power of Speech

This week's <I>parsha</I>, <I>Tazria</I>, teaches us what should be said and who should be dictating to whom..., 4/7/2005, 11:40 PM

<I>Shemini</I>: Walk the Line

In this world, we all must walk that line, placing ourselves on the side of holy or profane, good or evil. Ultimately, it is up to us to make the choice of which side of the line we will be on, but know that in this world, there is no standing still., 3/31/2005, 6:10 PM

Jericho First

This week, once again the ancient city of Jericho made headlines in Israel and around the world. "Jericho first" will be given over to Arab control as a sign that once again peace is in the air., 3/16/2005, 3:35 PM

<I>Pekudei</I>: Self-Sacrifice

To find out why Bezalel was chosen as the head engineer for building the <I>Mishkan</I>, we must find out who was his grandfather, Hur., 3/11/2005, 10:14 AM

<I>Vayak'hel</I>: Faith in the Darkness

While the men had given up hope, the women continued the fight, with faith that the redemption would come, no matter how dark or how far off it seemed. It was the copper mirrors that represented this great faith in <I>HaShem</I>, and their spirit not to give in., 3/3/2005, 11:21 AM

<I>Ki Tisa</I>: The Question

Once again, the story of the Golden Calf rolls around to haunt us. Once again, the sin that remains with us for all generations - as our rabbis teach us that there is no punishment meted out to the Jewish people that does not contain some punishment for the sin of the Golden Calf - meets us face-to-face., 2/24/2005, 8:19 PM