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Rabbanit Shira Smiles

News and updates about Rabbanit Shira Smiles

Passover I: Wine's wisdom

Wine is a unique product. What is its power at the Seder and in our lives?

Passover I:  Wine's wisdom

Sacred sanctity: Purim

Our goal is to elevate the physical elements and joy of Purim to a state of sanctity, to an expression of love and gratitude to Hashem

Sacred sanctity: Purim

Hanukkah Summary

Multi manifestations of miracles.

Hanukkah Summary

The Ten Days of Repentance: Basic building blocks

The keys to the teshuva process are elucidated by rabbis and commentators.

The Ten Days of Repentance: Basic building blocks

One kid, two zuzim and much symbolism

Delving into interpretations of Chad Gadya, the last song in the Haggada, among them the Vilna Gaon's perspective.

One kid, two zuzim and much  symbolism

Pesach I: Tracing the theme of the Haggadah

When both the beginning and end of a work refer to the same idea, it is the recurring theme throughout. Learn the Haggadah's structure.

Pesach I: Tracing the theme of the Haggadah

Tetsave: Where is Moshe?

Parshat Tetzaveh is the only Parshah from Sefer Shemot until the end of the written Torah that does not contain Moshe's name.

Tetsave: Where is Moshe?

Ear and Eerie

Jewish law insists on humane treatment of slaves, but why bore a hole in the ear of a slave who wishes to continue and why at the doorpost?

Ear and Eerie

Remember Shabbat every day of the week

We can infuse our entire week with that sense of completeness by viewing everything through the lens of Shabbat,

Remember Shabbat every day of the week

Beshalach: Ecstatic Emunah

Teaching our children about God cannot be limited to imparting knowledge; it must involve experiences that generate love of the Creator.

Beshalach: Ecstatic Emunah

Ephraim's escape

Redemption from Egypt alludes to the final redemption when Moshiach ben Yosef, from the Tribe of Ephraim, will precede Moshiach ben David.

Ephraim's escape

Entering Eternity

The Name told to Moses to describe Hashem is cryptic, implies the unknown, the Unknowable and the Eternal, God's Name of the future.

Entering Eternity

Abraham: Blessed with everything?

When Abraham was alive, he inspired people to see the world with clarity and return to a belief that all Hashem does is for the good.

Abraham: Blessed with everything?

Elul: Entering and exiting

Here we are again, not having met our past aspirations. What can we do to be more successful in the coming year?

Elul: Entering and exiting

Sensitivity and silence: The Three Weeks

There will always be some talent, skill, or natural characteristics that I can appreciate in another if I look at him with a favorable eye.

Sensitivity and silence: The Three Weeks

Generating giving

There is much more to giving than meets the eye. After all, the ability we have to do chesed, to be the giver, is also in Hashem’s hands.

Generating giving

Deciphering the demise of Devorah, Rivka's nurse

Devorah was Rivkah Imenu’s tutor as well as her nursemaid, sent by Rivkah to instill what a grandmother can teach a grandchild.

Deciphering the demise of Devorah, Rivka's nurse

Inconsolable and impoverished

Why did Yaakov cry when he met Rachel?

Inconsolable and impoverished

The Tower of Bavel, the first community project.Why did it fail?

Tension between humanity’s desire for total independence and submitting to God’s control plays out throughout human history.

The Tower of Bavel, the first community project.Why did it fail?

Carrying out the promises of Yom Kippur confession

The flaws listed as brazenness and 'haughty eyes' can be changed to boldness when needed and countered by humility when not.

Carrying out the promises of Yom Kippur confession

Legendary leadership: Ruler or server?

Moshe’s request for a leader applied not only to his immediate successor, but to all future leaders of Israel. G-d's answer applies as well.

Legendary leadership: Ruler or server?

Acharei Mot - Kedoshim: Virtual vitality

Acharei Mot - Kedoshim: Virtual vitality

Watching our words in this time of crisis - a lesson from the Haggadah

Watching our words in this time of crisis - a lesson from the Haggadah

Fundamental foundations of a house of G-d

Fundamental foundations of a house of G-d

Parshat Shekalim: Passion personification

Parshat Shekalim: Passion personification

Passionate performance in Parashat Shemot

Passionate performance in Parashat Shemot

Architecting an abode: Vayetzei

Architecting an abode: Vayetzei

Title transference

Title  transference

Parashat Noach: Incredible initiative

Parashat Noach: Incredible initiative

Elul: Incredible investment

Elul: Incredible investment

Splitting the song: Hallel, Nishmat and Shirat Hayam

Splitting the song: Hallel, Nishmat and Shirat Hayam

Fervent fire: Parashat Shmini

Fervent fire: Parashat Shmini

Purim: Fasting, petition and perspective

Purim: Fasting, petition and perspective

Legitimizing lies

Legitimizing lies

Vayechi: Core connection

Vayechi: Core connection

Bedrock beginnings in Balak

Bedrock beginnings in Balak

Visceral vision

Visceral vision

Recognition and Rejoicing on Pesach

Recognition and Rejoicing on Pesach

Introspective inspiration: Parsha Para

Introspective inspiration: Parsha Para

Vaera: Stupendous supplication

Vaera: Stupendous supplication

Lech :Lecha: The mysterious march

Lech :Lecha: The mysterious march

Pondering the Sukkah

Pondering the Sukkah

Victorious vision:Yom Kippur

Victorious vision:Yom Kippur

Vayelech: Glorious gathering

Vayelech: Glorious gathering

Ki Tavo: Continuous compassion

Ki Tavo: Continuous compassion

The five daughters:: Parshat Pinchas

The five daughters:: Parshat Pinchas

Pesach: Omnipresence and Oneness

Pesach: Omnipresence and Oneness

Joseph and Hanukkah: Images of inspiration

Joseph and Hanukkah: Images of inspiration

After the Flood: The lion's lesson

After the Flood: The lion's lesson

Emor (Diaspora): Omer Oneness

Emor (Diaspora): Omer Oneness

Returning to roots at the Pesach Seder

Returning to roots at the Pesach Seder

Rejuvenation of relationships: Parshat Hachodesh

Rejuvenation of relationships: Parshat Hachodesh

For Parshat Para: Purifying passion

For Parshat Para: Purifying passion

The poor on Purim

The poor on Purim

Remembrance: Symbolism and laws of Parshat Zachor

Remembrance: Symbolism and laws of Parshat Zachor

Parshat Shekalim: First of four

Parshat Shekalim: First of four

Tetzaveh: Revealing the revealed

Tetzaveh: Revealing the revealed

Broadened blessings

Broadened blessings

Transcendental trio

Transcendental trio

Parshat Bo: Loyal legions

Parshat Bo: Loyal legions