Rabbi Berel Wein

Life lessons from the story of Creation

The narrative contained in this week’s beginning portion of the Torah is not only a story of the past, but it is just as importantly a description of our present world and society, 10/5/2018, 2:29 PM

Feeling at home in the Sukkah

The rabbis always felt that a shack in Jerusalem was worthier and more protective than a great palace elsewhere., 9/27/2018, 7:46 AM

Haazinu: Are you deaf to the message of Moses?

I would think that by now the Jewish people would be aware that it is impossible, and even dangerous, to ignore the message of Moshe and of Jewish tradition., 9/20/2018, 2:48 PM

One day the students will remember what their teacher said long ago

Moses, the greatest teacher of all time, knew that what he says will take many years to be understood., 9/13/2018, 8:30 PM

Standing strong and resilient

How is it that the Jewish people, not numerous and for the most of its history, powerless and stateless, has somehow been able to survive and even thrive?, 9/6/2018, 9:58 AM

Twenty five years since Oslo - a story of faded hopes

The naysayers were silenced, if not pilloried and deplored -you had to believe that Arafat was another Mandela to be allowed to speak., 8/31/2018, 7:20 AM

The 20th century: What happened?

The world that began the 20th century had vanished completely by the middle of that century., 8/20/2018, 3:18 PM

A judge can only judge by what his eyes allow him to see.

We are to realize that ultimate justice is most times beyond our abilities., 8/16/2018, 1:40 PM

Looking forward

Remembering past troubles and tragedies never completely inhibited us from looking forward., 8/14/2018, 4:47 AM

The Jewish People's propensity to make bad choices

Geniuses are not necessarily the best of teachers because they cannot understand why the students are so dense and do not understand what is so patently obvious. , 8/8/2018, 3:56 PM

Vaetchanan: The two Ten Commandment texts

There is fascinating discussion over the centuries as to what the text that was inscribed on the tablets of stone actually stated. , 7/26/2018, 12:34 PM

After the fast

After the fast day of mourning on the ninth day of Av come seven weeks of resilience and rehabilitation. , 7/22/2018, 9:11 PM

We cannot choose how we will be remembered

Often in human experience, individuals, even if they live long and productive lives with many different experiences and accomplishments, are nevertheless remembered and always associated with one individual situation and life altering decision., 7/6/2018, 2:34 PM

This three-week period

Today's State of Israel is a product of this three-week period, yet there are those who say we should cease mourning the Temple now that we have our own sovereignty. They are misguided., 7/4/2018, 8:02 AM

Moses' anger

Moshe was subject to becoming angry at certain occasions during his 40-year leadership of the Jewish people. Which?, 6/14/2018, 12:26 PM

What happened to the Conservative Movement?

What caused the decline of a movement that once was seen by many as a force, for good and for bad, in American Jewish society? , 6/13/2018, 10:30 AM

Majority rules is not always the right decision

A Jewish Congressman famously stated a century ago that God and one constitute a majority. , 6/9/2018, 9:55 PM

Hot summers

Rabbi Yisrael Lipkin of Salant said that all luxuries eventually become necessities, and this certainly has proven to be the case regarding air conditioning here in Israel., 5/29/2018, 2:56 PM

Nasso: Repetition, repetition

The repetition of the same identical gifts that each of the 12 elders of the tribes of Israel donated to the Tabernacle is there to teach us something., 5/24/2018, 7:55 AM

Abraham described Jerusalem as a mountain

It takes great effort and patience to climb the mountain of spirituality that Jerusalem represents. , 5/8/2018, 5:26 PM

Torah - The forest and the trees at one and the same time

It would be unthinkable that the Torah would command us to be a Holy nation dedicated to the service of God and human beings without telling us how this was to be achieved. (Diaspora reading), 4/26/2018, 8:51 AM

Ever young

We are an ever-young people whose past is ever present and that is how we are privileged to celebrate 70 years of our own country's independence., 4/19/2018, 9:58 AM

Psychological and mental healing

The connection between the outside world, human physiology and psychology is one whose mechanics we do not understand, but whose effects and therapies can be measured., 4/11/2018, 6:49 PM

Sympathy comes from the heart and not from the tongue.

Aaron stayed silent when his sons died. It is interesting to note that throughout the world hospitals contain signs that ask for silence. , 3/29/2018, 11:51 AM

Having the Seder at home

It is no exaggeration to say that the Jewish world is founded on the night of the Pesach Seder., 3/21/2018, 4:24 PM

God calls out to us

It is the still small voice that is heard that rings in our mind and pricks our conscience., 3/14/2018, 9:10 PM

The logic behind Sabbath prohibitions :Vayakhel-Pikudei

if the Jewish people were prohibited from building and constructing the Mishkan/Tabernacle on Shabbat then why were they allowed and in fact commanded to operate and conduct the sacrificial service in that building on Shabbat? , 3/7/2018, 6:27 PM

Purim will be celebrated eternally, even when the Messiah comes

At first glance, this seems to be a very strange observation. , 3/1/2018, 1:08 PM

We are not the Crusaders

Our enemies are deluded by recollections of the Crusades, where after centuries, the Christian invaders were forced to relinquish their power and territory in the Middle East. , 2/15/2018, 11:00 PM

Lending money to a fellow Jew

Lending money to others and helping them to extricate themselves from otherwise burdensome circumstances is a positive commandment of the Torah, but it sets out the rules. , 2/12/2018, 12:38 PM

European countries say "not me"

The late Prime Minister of Israel, Yitzchak Shamir, once said that anti-Semitism in Eastern Europe is placed into the population with its mother’s milk., 2/8/2018, 12:08 PM

For Tu Bishvat: Israel's agricultural blessings

The infamous Peel Commission issued its learned conclusions in 1936 stating that the entire land of Israel – then Palestine under British mandate – could not support a population greater than 2 1/2 million souls. And now... , 1/30/2018, 7:13 PM

Democracy is messy

The old religious – secular bugaboo has reared its head once more and as usual harsh and unnecessary invective is being employed by all sides of this debate. , 1/25/2018, 3:21 PM

A burning desire to replace wrong with right

Moses' life is characterized by a burning passion for justice., 1/7/2018, 9:53 PM

O! Jerusalem

It is not so much that the world wants Jerusalem – after all it was a wasteland and backwater location for many centuries whether under Christian or Moslem rule – it is simply that the world does not want the Jews to have Jerusalem. , 12/26/2017, 4:50 PM

Vayigash: In this world good has to be its own reward

Good deeds do not necessarily mean a tranquil and untroubled life for those who do them., 12/20/2017, 12:34 PM


Every generation has special people that affect the lives of many of their contemporaries as well as the lives of later generations. G-d deals them out sparingly, but there is always at least one., 12/19/2017, 5:43 PM

The brotherrs who could not speak peacefully to one another

Would that we be in the midst of a reconciliation, as took place in the story of Joseph., 12/8/2017, 10:09 AM

The UN and Israel

It helped create Israel but has attempted numerous times to destroy it as well, while the Muslim world would have solved the 'refugee' problem had the UN not helped perpetuate it., 12/5/2017, 11:46 AM


Deep down in the hearts of all concerned, there is the fear that the last chapter in this struggle has not yet been written. , 12/1/2017, 11:55 AM

US Jewish leaders are fighting the wrong battle

American Jews may know that somehow they are the people of the book but they don't know what book is being referred to. There is little hope for their eventual survival as a vital part of the Jewish people., 11/28/2017, 2:42 PM

People of the tents

Jewish existence as a reminder of spiritually and decency., 11/24/2017, 1:00 PM

Balancing today's norms

Extremism rarely if ever results in the sanctification of God’s name in the world. , 11/22/2017, 3:35 PM

The wreckage of empty wells

We have always longed to be fresh, new and different than our ancestors. And we have paid dearly for it., 11/18/2017, 10:35 PM

100 years since the start of Communist rule

History is a brutal teacher. It does not support false doctrines., 11/13/2017, 1:49 PM

A century of Balfour

The Balfour Declaration was an emotional impetus to the idea that the exile of Israel could and would diminish and end., 11/11/2017, 10:16 PM

The vanishing American traditional Jew

The reason for the waning of the Conservative Movement., 11/1/2017, 10:34 PM

The angels that walk among us

Civilization is the story of human transformation. , 10/31/2017, 5:55 PM

The frist wandering Jew

It wasn't just a travel experience, it was a lesson for generations to come., 10/25/2017, 10:01 PM

After the holidays

There are no Jewish holidays until Hannukah. We hve to make do with memories of the holidays of the month of Tishrei, about to end., 10/17/2017, 1:15 PM

Sukkot: Finding a place for the soul

In a way, Sukkot is a natural continuation of Yom Kippur., 10/5/2017, 6:08 AM

The annulment of vows on Yom Kippur

Why are we so confident that Heaven will agree to this and truly wipe that slate clean for us? , 9/29/2017, 1:56 PM

Belgian chickens

We are invested in scandals, personal failures and rumors, and the great issues are ignored., 9/12/2017, 1:52 PM

What Moses said came true

Simply put, the vindication of the prophecy and words of Moshe themselves are one of the strongest pillars of faith upon which Judaism and the Jewish people rest., 9/7/2017, 9:47 AM

Lost causes

It is as though all of our battles have been won and there are really no new worlds left to discover and conquer.  , 9/3/2017, 9:45 AM

Ki Tetsei: Temptation

Usually we do not carry out the acts that tempt us simply because of lack of opportunity and not necessarily because of our piety., 9/1/2017, 10:06 AM

Seeing correctly

Only clear vision can lead to wise and correct choices., 8/20/2017, 12:55 AM