Judaism

Judaism


The deeper meaning of tithes: Sanctifyinng material things

We understand the prayers that God grant children, sufficient rain and fertile animals, but why pray that the fruit of the Land be tasty?

The real meaning of tithes:  Sanctifyinng material things

Kriyat Shema – An invitation to new understanding

Everything about Kriyat Shema seems wildly inconsistent and unrelated, so what is the theme that strings it all together?

Kriyat Shema – An invitation to new understanding

Ekev:They heard only what they wished to hear

Moshe presents, throughout his discourse, both sides of the coin.Unfortunately, over the ages, the Jews have not always chosen wisely.

Ekev:They heard only what they wished to hear

Ekev: A life of seasons

There is plenty of room for individual expression in Judaism. Perhaps not in the days of our calendar, but in the choices of life.

Ekev: A life of seasons

Revelation at Muscle Beach

Straightforward reading of Torah verses makes it clear where Jews are supposed to be, so why were we in Los Angeles?

Revelation at Muscle Beach

Remembering Rav Yitzchok Hutner's Relationships with Gedolim in America

Part three of The Changing of an Era. (Links to previous parts at the beginning of the article.) Note: "Gedolim" refers to Great Rabbis.

Rav Yitzchok Hutner's Relationships with America's Gedolim

Weekly Tanya video/lecture: The Epistle on Repentance

The Tanya compacts four millennia of Jewish wisdom to answer the great personal and existential questions of life.

Weekly Tanya video/lecture: The Epistle on Repentanceplayer

Somnambule

We ask God where He is, but He is asking us the same question...

Somnambule

Killing terrorists for a better world

Rabbi Kook loved man but hated evil. In his thought, the IDF's recent achievements against terror have significance far beyond Gaza..

Killing terrorists for a better world

An argument against Astrology

What Jewish sages said about astrology - and an added topic on paragraphing in the Torah scroll.

An argument against Astrology

Consolation for Jerusalem

From consolation in the Haftarah to the news of shooting near the Old City, in one day.

Consolation for Jerusalem

Tu B"Av and the value of the family

Tu B”Av during the times of the Mishna was a Yom Tov that revolved around starting a family in Israel.

Tu B'Av and the value of the family

Vaetchanan: With all your soul

Israel's first Chief Rabbi: What need was there for Rabbi Akiva to recite this final Shema?

Vaetchanan: With all your soul

Despite our sins...Vaetchanan, Nachamu and Tu B'Av

In no way can one compare the conduct of the so-called secular Zionists to the huge transgressions of the Jews in the desert. And yet...

Despite our sins...Vaetchanan, Nachamu and  Tu B'Av

After the 9th of Av comes Tu B'Av: Vaetchanan/Shabbat Nachamu

When Moshe began to speak his own words to his beloved people for the first time, how did he begin?

After the 9th of Av comes Tu B'Av

Talking Parsha - Va'etchanan: Adding mitzvos is idol worship?!

This week's Torah portion discusses not adding or subtracting from the commandments. What's wrong with adding?

Talking Parsha - Va'etchanan: Adding mitzvos is idol worship?!player

Weekly Torah Study: Vaetchanan

Has modern man really stopped believing in powerful forces acting as gods?

Weekly Torah Study: Vaetchanan

Vaetchanan: MyShabbat

Today we have Myoffice, Mydrive, my-everything, so why not MyShabbat?

Vaetchanan: MyShabbat

Nachamu, Nachamu – The secret to survival

This week's haftarah is not only a message of consolation; it is a major hashkafic (philosophic) treatise and more.

Nachamu, Nachamu – The secret to survival

No, you don't need to finish it all!

It is not your responsibility to finish the work [of perfecting the world], but you are not free to desist from it either – - Rabbi Tarfon,

No, you don't need to finish it all!

Why Moshe was not privileged to be buried in Eretz Yisrael

Read an unbelievable story about Rav Maimon and the Rogatchover about claiming to be born in Eretz Yisrael.

Why Moshe was not privileged to be buried in Eretz Yisrael

A question and answer that might surprise you

This week, we have a lesson in woodwork - that isn't really about wood at all.

A question and answer that might surprise you

Shabbat Nachamu" Beginning a time of consolation

Healing occurs when one believes that there is yet a future ahead.

Shabbat Nachamu: Beginning a time of consolation

Journey of the Land

Words are not enough.When you ask me why, I do not have the words to answer, my friend.

Journey of the Land

Fair and good in the eyes of Hashem

Rashi expounds:’Fair and good’: compromising, acting beyond the strict demands of the law. What do other commentators say?

Fair and good in the eyes of Hashem

Vacation plans

Surveys reveal that only about 15% of Diaspora Jews have visited Israel. To me, that’s embarrassing.

Vacation plans

Changing the Ten Commandments

Why was the wording altered in Va'etchanan?

Changing the Ten Commandments

Weekly Tanya video/lecture

The Tanya compacts four millennia of Jewish wisdom to answer the great personal and existential questions of life.

Weekly Tanya video/lectureplayer

The changing of an era, part II: Rav Hutner's disciples

At readers' request below are memories of some of Rabbi Hutner's disciples.

The changing of an era, part II: Rav Hutner's disciples

Until the break of dawn

The people of Israel are not afraid of the dawn; because light clarifies things. They seem alone, but G-d is with them.

Until the break of dawn

Tisha B’Av; Why mourn?

Tisha B’Av; Why mourn?

Laws of Tisha B’Av postponed to Sunday

This year the fast is on Sunday although the 9th of Av is on Shabbat. Here is how to keep the laws in this situation.

Laws of Tisha B’Av postponed to Sunday

Tisha B’Av: A Moed?

How can such a tragic day, on which five calamities occurred, culminating in the Destruction itself, be called a mo’ed?

 Tisha B’Av: A Moed?

Devarim: Right versus Might

Israel's first Chief Rabbi's prescient words: There are nations addicted to brute force and aggression and It becomes part of their pshyche.

Devarim: Right versus Might

Halakhot for greeting the Mashiach if he comes this Sunday

We do not know exactly how the Redemption will come about and in what order things will occur, but let us be prepared!

Halakhot on greeting the Mashiach if he comes this Sunday

Devarim: Don’t listen to me – listen to Moshe

The Torah wasn’t given to be kept in Sinai, nor in Brooklyn or Beverly Hills. The Torah isn’t a “religion” like Buddhism or Christianity,

Devarim:  Don’t listen to me – listen to Moshe

Halakhot for when the 9th of Av falls on Shabbat - 5782

We do not fast on Shabbat (except for Yom Kippur).This year the 9th of Av is on Shabbat, so we fast Sat. night and Sunday. A primer.

Halakhot for when the 9th of Av falls on Shabbat - 5782

Talking Parsha - Devarim: Moshe is doing us a favor??

Who is talking in the book of Devarim - is it Moshe giving his own speech? Or did Hashem command Moshe to give this speech?

Talking Parsha - Devarim: Moshe is doing us a favor??player

Devarim to Tisha B’Av

The power of derech eretz.- it is impossible to be rude, arrogant, rough and unpleasant while remaining a devoted servant of God.

Devarim to Tisha B’Av

The house of Hashem

Mourning and yearning for the house built for His people and eventually for the world.

The house of Hashem

Fasting without fasting

Are there elements of fasting on Shabbat the 9th of Av even though it is forbidden to fast on Shabbat?

Fasting without fasting

Summing up forty years

Moshe communicates a message to the generation in the desert and about to enter an unknown land, and he resonates on for eternity.

Summing up forty years

The making of a 'rasha'

How a well-intentioned organization became an infamous bloc of nations that blames Israel for all the world's ills.

The making of a 'rasha'

Unifying Israel, G-d, the Torah, and the Land

It is supremely appropriate that it is precisely during the Three Weeks that we meet up again and become re-united in our Torah-readings.

Unifying Israel, G-d, the Torah, and the Land

Raisins and Almonds, mourning and hope

This month we are presented with a foretelling of destruction, but we are also told ”But this do I call to mind, therefore I have hope."

Raisins and Almonds, mourning and hope

The Changing of an Era: Remembering Rav Yitzchok Hutner's disciples

Inspiration and memory - would that we had the ability to come close to the level of the people written about below.

The Changing of an Era: Rav Yitzchok Hutner's disciples

Rashi's commentary has lessons for life

In these vignettes we learn from Rashi, Savta Rabbanit Bramson, Moshe Rabbeinu and the Farkash family in Monsey.

Rashi's commentary has lessons for life

Will the Temple be built this year?

We mourn and fast, pray and beseech Hashem for the rebuilding of the Holy Temple. But what will happen?

Will the Temple be built this year?

Laws for the Nine Days

What is permitted, what is forbidden - when and why.

Laws for the Nine Days

The accidental murderer

Weekly Torah study - Justice and atonement.

The accidental murdererplayer

In defense of the Rambam

People say there is no mitzvah to make Aliya today, since the Rambam did not include it on his list of mitzahs.They need to delve deeper.

In defense of the Rambam

Why are we focusing on self-esteem?

In all of Jewish literature, one would be hard-pressed to find a single statement glorifying self-esteem. Humility, however, is much lauded.

Why are we focusing on self-esteem?

The purpose of our journey - summing up the Book of Numbers

The Torah reading during the Three Weeks is not happenstance, but the map for a nation's journey to Redemption.

The purpose of our journey - summing up the Book of Numbers

Remembering Israel

Jews cried because they "remembered Zion" - why didn't they remember the bloodshed and suffering inflicted on them instead?

Remembering Israel

Bloodshed and corruption defile the Land

The alleged corruption revealed in the past few days in Israel should remind us of Torah admonitions about conditions for retaining the land

Bloodshed and corruption defile the Land

The 9 Days: A time for rebuilding the world with love

Israel's first Chief Rabbi: We must counter baseless hatred, sinat chinam, with baseless love, ahavat chinam.

The 9 Days: A time for rebuilding the world with love




























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