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Shoftim - People regard us as what we have been; we regard ourselves as what we would like to be – only G-d regards us as what we are
Of What We've Lost & What We've Found
Happy Birthday
KEEPING IT ON THE FLAME
PARASHAT YITRO – A TOUCH OF LIFE, A BRUSH WITH DEATH

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Shoftim - People regard us as what we have been; we regard ourselves as what we would like to be – only G-d regards us as what we are

“You shall not pervert justice; you shall not show favoritism, and you shall not take a bribe, for bribery blinds the eyes of the wise and perverts just words”
Nor shall you show favoritism – now that’s a tough one! After all, “it’s good to know the law but better to know the judge” has been the unequivocal rule in many parts of our society. And surely a natural tendency to be more favorable to someone whose demeanor, social or financial status or other qualities make predisposed to your liking is innate to every human being.

Of What We've Lost & What We've Found

Tisha Beav

This day is etched into the make-up of the Jewish nation like a deep, infected wound that covers with a scab only to reopen fully after the slightest agitation. And no balm within the reach of modern medicine is of any use. Wellsprings of tears and blood shed by the Jewish nation on this day will forever remain vividly commited to the resources of our memory.

But, one little step at a time, we come closer to a realization that perhaps this wound is no wound at all. Rather, it is a skillfully crafted portal carefully implanted by the Master Surgeon.

Happy Birthday

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There is a famous story about Rabbi Elazar Ben Azaria, who was only 18 when he assumed the post of a Nassi, the supreme community leadership mantle existing among the Jewish people at that time. How will people ever take me seriously,- he wondered? Most of my colleagues are at least twice my age!  Miraculously, the Talmud tells us, G-d has performed a miracle for R’ Elazar. Overnight, his beard and hear became snow-white, thus giving the rabbi appearance of a seasoned sage who seemed ready to carry the burden of a nation on his frail shoulders.

KEEPING IT ON THE FLAME

This Tuesday night we had a privilege to host Rabbi Asher Kushnir, who shared many insights into the intricate world of Jewish marriage. And while the lecture was quite entertaining, all walked out with hands-on advice and practical points on how to make the marriage function to it's full potential. The very next evening, about twenty women had gathered to celebrate Rosh Chodesh with Rebbetzn Uzhansky delivering an inspirational lecture followed by a Challah baking class. 
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PARASHAT YITRO – A TOUCH OF LIFE, A BRUSH WITH DEATH

 
The most esoteric experience ever endured by the mankind is undoubtedly the Sinai experience. As voices were seen and visions heard, the collective minds of the Jewish nation became so closely attached to the source that various physical expressions of the divine have merged into one undivided unit of G-d’s presence. Yet, this revelation came with a heavy toll on those present.
 
After having heard the first commandment of “I am your Lord”, the Jews died. Sensing the closeness of Hashem, their souls have” abandoned ship” of the physical shell (body) and rushed to reconnect with the Source.

At the end of it all - what is the purpose?

Much could be said about what one's priorities in life should be.
 
Some say family, everyone mentions health, money, success in relationships and a myriad other noble reasons that make life worth living. But underneath it all, what is the foundation that supports our drive to exist? Much challenge befalls everyone during their 60-90 year stay in this world, but no matter it all each breath is precious and desired by most.
As I muse about these lofty ideas, a vivid image comes to mind.
 
 My grandfather partially immobilized by a stroke, waking up to see my son, Yaakov, who came with me for a surprise visit.

Parshas Chayei Sarah - Life of Sarah

Parshas Chayei Sarah  - Life of Sarah
 
       This week’s parsha (weekly portion of the Torah) is named after our great mother Sarah the righteous.  This is indeed a great honor for her daughters to learn from. What did this woman do to deserve such and honor?  The quote “Behind every great man is an even greater women” seems to resonate with most women, why?  What would a wife’s, mother’s ultimate dream be? To help us answer these questions and walk away with an understanding of our infinite value as mothers and wives we need to learn from the source right here in this week’s parsha.

Chala

Directions
  1. In a large bowl, sprinkle yeast over barely warm water. Beat in honey, oil, 2 eggs, and salt. Add the flour one cup at a time, beating after each addition, graduating to kneading with hands as dough thickens. Knead until smooth and elastic and no longer sticky, adding flour as needed. Cover with a damp clean cloth and let rise for 1 1/2 hours or until dough has doubled in bulk.
  2. Punch down the risen dough and turn out onto floured board. Divide in half and knead each half for five minutes or so, adding flour as needed to keep from getting sticky.

Reflections on proper ways of childhood development

 they go again.. The constant screaming, nagging and kvetching once again dominate the sound waves of our enviornment. And the nerves start tingeling, vibrating

Yom Kippur Reflections

As the day of YK comes near, many of us begin to wonder about which strategy to use in order to win heavenly favor. And while there are many ways that our sages suggested us to use (promising to be better, more kind, charitable etc..), it is always special to hear individual Jews from the full spectrum of life share their "spiritual recepies" for the proper storming of heavens. And now, what will you do?