Do We Need a Queen Esther?

At a pivotal moment in the Purim story, Mordechai asks Queen Esther to appeal to King Achashverosh to annul Haman's genocidal decree. Esther hesitates, because to approach the King without being summoned was an offense punishable by death. Mordechai's response is...

It’s All in the Delivery

Today is the beginning of the Jewish month of Adar. In Jewish tradition this is a period of joy and celebration — it heralds the holidays of Purim in Adar, followed by Passover during the following month of Nissan. These holidays celebrate the deliverance of the...

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I’ve Got Something Special For You

"I have a great gift in my storehouse!" This is what G-d told the Jewish people when He gave them the Mitzvah of Shabbos, the Commandment to rest on Saturday, the seventh day of the week -- the same day G-d Himself chose as His own day of rest after the six days of...

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Who’s Got the Lights?

A man helped his blind friend to find his way home, protecting him from stumbling along the road. When they eventually reached the blind man’s house, the sighted one asked as they walked through the door: “Can you please turn on the light for me?” As it was his house,...

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Half Measures

The dimensions of the various components of the Mishkan (The Tabernacle) are specified in great detail in this week’s Torah portion. These measurements were certainly relevant at the time, required information for those tasked with its construction. The lessons of the...

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Good Judgment

Our reading begins, "And these are the judgments..." [Ex. 21:1] The laws in the Torah described as "judgments" are civil laws, which every society must have in order to avoid anarchy. Yet the Torah emphasizes that its civil laws are of Divine origin, like the laws...

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Take the Next Step

What happens when you hear something that truly inspires you? What do you "take home" afterwards? I once heard that there are three possible reactions people might have. Some will simply shrug it off, thinking, "it really wasn't important to me, and won't affect me...

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