Let’s Talk About Retirement

What do you hope to be doing when you're eighty years old? In last week's Torah reading, the story of the enslavement of the Jewish people in Egypt and their ultimate redemption began. The key figures in this story are Moshe and Aharon (Moses and Aaron), who were...
Eat Your Heart Out

Eat Your Heart Out

I have never been to an engagement party, a wedding, or even a birthday party that didn't have refreshments, if not a full course meal. What's a party without food and drinks? Of course, the reason for this staple of merriment is that the hosts of the party want the...

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Astounding Surroundings

Astounding Surroundings

The benefits of having good neighbors are well known. A good neighbor will keep an eye on your house when you're away, take in your mail, water your plants, and feed your fish. Good neighbors will watch out for you, greet you on your walk around the block, and join...

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On the Other Side

On the Other Side

In this week's reading, Abraham is called an Ivri, a Hebrew, for the first time. "And it was told to Abraham, the Hebrew... (Genesis 14:13)." What is the meaning of this word Ivri, one of the most common descriptors of the Jews? An Ivri, simply, is "the one on the...

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The Greatest Thing in the Whole Wide World

The Greatest Thing in the Whole Wide World

At the end of last week's portion, Bereishis, we were introduced to Noah, the one man who found G-d's favor in the debased generation of the flood. This week the portion opens, "These are the children of Noah" -- but the Torah then elaborates on Noah's personal...

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Back to the Beginning

Back to the Beginning

When I finish a book, I most often have little desire to read it again. I even feel somewhat relieved that I've made it through the few hundred pages, even if I enjoyed the journey. It is rare to find a book so rich with ideas or intriguing characters that I might...

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Real Joy and Plastic Frogs

Real Joy and Plastic Frogs

The Siddur describes the holiday of Sukkos as "Our time of happiness." After the intense and cleansing High Holy Days, we can now rejoice with our Creator, celebrating our renewed relationship. Also, if we consider the agricultural cycle in Israel (or most anywhere in...

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