Chanukah is Breaking News

At the beginning of this week's reading, Joseph seems to be in a hopeless situation. Not only has he been separated from his family, sold into servitude in Egypt, but he has been thrown into prison as well. But when it was time for his redemption, it was immediate and...
Turning Signals

Turning Signals

Last week's Torah portion described the degradation of mankind leading up to the flood (the Mabul) — "G-d saw that the evil of man was great in the land, and all thoughts of his heart were only evil, all the time (Genesis 6:5)." G-d decided to erase his original...

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Viduy Verbalized

Viduy Verbalized

We are now in the "Ten Days of Teshuva (commonly translated as repentance)." The elements of Teshuva are verbal confession, regret, refraining from the negative behavior and pledging to do better.Verbal confession, Viduy, can be found explicitly in the Yom Kippur...

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New for the New Year

New for the New Year

A righteous and well respected Rabbi was mourning the loss of his father. Because of his great sensitivity towards his father and the Mitzvah of respecting his parents, he was deeply concerned that he had not shown proper respect to his father during his lifetime. He...

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First Fruits Forever

First Fruits Forever

This week's reading begins with the Commandment of Bikkurim, bringing the first fruits to the Holy Temple, and other gifts that were given to the Priests, Levites and the poor. Having finished the process at the end of the third year, the farmer declared, "I have...

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A Tap on the Shoulder

A Tap on the Shoulder

To give to others is the best way to show you love them. Indeed, the Hebrew word “Ahava - Love” is a derivative of the Hebrew root “Hav,” which means to give. If someone gave you a gift, helped you when you were stranded on the side of the road, or even saved your...

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The Power of a Bribe

The Power of a Bribe

The traditional naming of the five books and the weekly readings in the Torah is done by simply using the first uncommon word of the book or reading. This week's reading, though, is aptly named, for it begins with Shoftim, judges, and many of the 41 Commandments found...

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