Nasso (Israel)/Shavuot: Celebrating Israel, celebrating G-dConnecting Jews with G-d, their nation and their land.
Bamidbar (Israel): LeadersEven the greatest leader is human, and therefore fallible,
Parshat Hachodesh: The blood of RedemptionThis Shabbat we read Parshat Tazria but the Haftorah is the first national mitzva given the Jewish people, that of Hachodesh. They have a spiritual connection.
Purim and sacrifices: Why walled cities celebrate the 15th of AdarA historical context for the two days of Purim and the reading of Parashat Tzav.
Pekudei: Let the celebrations begin!What greater joy can there be than building the House of G-d?
Of calves and covenantsPutting the extent of the sin into perspective.
Letter to PM Netanyahu on the continued detention of Meir EttingerEttinger has not been accused of illegal acts. Is there such a thing as an illegal opinion in a democracy?
In time of warLook at the Egyptians to see that no matter how seemingly loyal, when it comes to war, a person will side with his original nation and not with Israel.
A tale of two staffsWhy two different words for the reptiles that the two staffs were transformed into?
When the love-story turns bitter: the Israelites and EgyptIt is the nature of a bush that when someone puts his hand in, he is not injured, because all the thorns point downwards; but when he comes to take his hand out, the thorns catch him and he is unable to take it out. (Midrash)
For Shabbat Hanukkah: Miketz and the MaccabeesUnited we stand, divided we fall.
Hanukkah: Lighting the path to redemptionHow will we light the Hanukkah lights when Mashiach comes? Read this and be prepared.
Parashat Vayeshev: Returning to ShechemWhoever controls Shechem controls a strategic mountain pass.
Become who you are!Ishmael tried to be Isaac – even as his descendants today try to usurp Isaac’s inheritance. But there can only be one Isaac, the real one.
Follow in the footsteps of AbrahamHe could have done G-d's work in Haran, but he heeded the call. So should we.
G-d, Einstein, and How to Make Your Shoe-polish Last ForeverTrue existence – true reality – is measured, and can be measured, solely in terms of Torah.
The Sukkah: Nofelet or nofalet?Even a change in a vowel can have a deep meaning in Judaism.
Vayeilech: When leaders of Israel die...In memory of a fighter for Eretz Yisrael.
Parashat Nitzavim: Choose life!Time to come home.
The Place that G-d ChoosesSix stops on the way to Jerusalem.
Ki Tetze: Protecting the HomeParashat Ki Tetze is exceptionally rich in mitzvot: it contains 27 positive mitzvot and 47 negative, for a total of 74. They are connected.
Re'eh: The Joy of Inheriting the Land of IsraelThe pronouncements of blessings and curses are our very foundation in the Land of Israel.
Ekev: To walk before G-d in the Light of LifeThe Land of Israel is bound up with the Jewish People.
After Tisha B'Av Comes Shabbat NachamuThe Sabbath of consolation follows the fast of destruction.
Parshat Dvarim and the 9th of Av - What's the Connection?Looking forward with hope.
29th of Tammuz, Remembering two Jewish Giants“How are the mighty fallen!” (2 Samuel 1:19)
Balak and Fast of the 17th of Tammuz:Parashat Balak invariably falls around the 17th of Tammuz; indeed, and this year, Shabbat Parashat Balak falls precisely on the 17th of Tammuz. What is the connection?
Gaza Rockets, Eubulides, and the Sorites ParadoxHow many grains constitute “a heap”? And how many rockets are "a few" beyond which there are "many"?
Korach: Despair in the DesertThe Israelites in the desert wanted to enter Israel. How will any Jew who decides, in this generation, to remain in exile answer the question: Were you sincere and honest all those dozens of times every day that you prayed to return to Zion?
Sinai to Paran to Israel to Babylon to GermanyThere is a deep connection between Paraha and Haftarah.
The Ultimate Blessing of PeaceAn ever increasing blessing.
From Defilement to RedemptionJudaism has forged an intimate connexion between every individual Jew’s declaration of faith and the function of the Kohen.
Yom Haatzmaut: Animals, rivers, exiles, and redemptionsThe fourth exile, the longest and bitterest of them all, is the last exile.
AfflictionsTazria-Metzora are combined except for leap years. This coming Shabbat they are read in the Diaspora, but Israel read them this past Shabbat. To what do the afflictions recounted allude?
Parashat Shmini: “No Jew will be left behind"No tears will be left to be cried” (Avraham Fried).
The Seder Night: An InvitationAbraham and Lot invited guests into their home as we do at the Seder.
Shabbat Hagadol and Parshat TzavIn the word mokdah: the first letter, the mem, is traditionally written smaller than all the other letters. Why?
A new Book, a New Month, a New Year, a New EraParashat Vayikra and Shabbat Hachodesh: Why was the first national mitzvah that G-d ever gave the commandment to institute a calendar?
The Inevitable failure of the Zionist UnionWhy, after all, should any voter elect a poor imitation when the real thing is available?
A Guide to Shabbat Shekalim, Zachor, Purim, and Ki TisaThis is the sixth time that this sequence has occurred in the last 30 years.
Half-Way Through the Book of ExodusThis parsha emphasizes the role of justice and worthy judges, an essential step towards Redemption.
Sending Israel on its MissionWhat does it mean to be G-d’s “Kingdom of Kohanim”?
At the End of the ExileJews have in them a mingling of hope for redemption and despair of its ever happening. But when encountering death, we are on the brink of new life!
Parshat Bo: Arguing Against Redemption, Then and NowHistory, and the Jews' response to it, repeats itself.
The Staff of Peace and the Staff of JusticeWhy it was Aaron’s staff rather than Moshe’s which G-d transformed into a crocodile when confronting Pharaoh?
Shemot: Who is worthy of being a leader of Israel?Moses,David and Amos were shepherds.
10th Tevet 5775: How Quickly Hanukkah is Forgotten!The Fast of the 10th of Tevet coincides with the Gregorian new year this time around. Fast or feast? Mourn over the destruction of Jerusalem? Or celebrate Sylvester named for a highly unsavoury pope and “saint”?
Miracles After HanukkahWe can look at miracles as being (potentially at least) every event that ever happens.
Hanukkah: The Price of Treason, the Fight for FreedomThe Seleucid Dynasty met its match and was defeated by the Maccabees' fight against tyranny and treason and who may have given other countries under Seleucid rule the courage to revolt.
Vayishlach: Bowing to the Enemy, Then and NowWhat would the Ramban have said had he seen the modern rulers of Israel's obsequiousness before the rulers of modern-day Rome, Turkey, and the Arabs?! And how will future generations rationalize how they brought the enemies of Israel into Israel?!
Birth of a NationThe memory of our ancestors can inspire us all and infuse us with hope: our nation itself was born in exile.
Loving-kindness and Truth175 years ago this week, on Shabbat Parashat Toldot, 2nd Kislev 5600 the Kotzker Rebbe threw his hassidim, and ultimately the entire hassidic world, into turmoil.
Ishmael and Civilized Human Society"A wild man, his hand against everyone and everyone's hand against him"
The Forefathers as Forerunners of Jewish DestinyHowever we interpret Abraham’s actions, it is obvious that he didn’t leave the Land of Israel, the Land which G-d had promised to his descendants, simply because he could find chocolate-flavoured puddings cheaper in Egypt.
The Death of Evil PeopleMishnah, Sanhedrin: "The death of evil people is pleasant and beneficial for them, and pleasant and beneficial for the world.”
The Sukkah of faith, the Sukkah of redemptionWe take our leave of the Sukkah on Erev Shmini Atzeret/Simchat Torah. A review.
The Ultimate SabbathThe sequence of Yom Kippur falling on Shabbat four out of five years is extremely rare.