Author Archives: Rabbi Nico Socolovsky

Between (Biblical) Egypt and (Today’s) Australia: Stubbornness and narrow-mindedness / Discover Who Pharaoh Really is! #Va’era

This week I watched the news coming from Australia: golf-ball-size hail and massive dust storms hitting rural and urban areas alike. It’s been a rough couple of weeks weather-wise. Now it’s hail and dust but Australia isn’t done yet with the terrible fires that have lashed its territory, killing more than 30 people, tens of thousands of animals, and destroying

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Shemot: The Secret Power of the Biblical Women Who Beat Milgram’s experiment

  When we look retrospectively at the book of Genesis, which we just finished reading a week ago, there are two key concepts that keep coming to my mind. The first one is ethical monotheism, which appears at first by the statement that man and woman were created in the image of God, and of course is deepened in the

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Your Head Above the Water is good but not nearly enough

Ki Tetzeh (Deuteronomy 21:10–25:19) is the Torah portion with the highest amount of Mitzvot in the entire Torah: 74 Mitzvot. Maimonides explains that the function of the Mitzvot is to help us sharpen our humanity, or in other words, to bring more “human” to our beings. I want to start by exploring the first 3 Mitzvot in this Torah portion.

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It’s not what you think! But it is! #Parashat Re’eh

Deuteronomy 11: 26-28 רְאֵ֗ה אָנֹכִ֛י נֹתֵ֥ן לִפְנֵיכֶ֖ם הַיּ֑וֹם בְּרָכָ֖ה וּקְלָלָֽה׃אֶֽת־הַבְּרָכָ֑ה אֲשֶׁ֣ר תִּשְׁמְע֗וּ אֶל־מִצְוֺת֙ יְהוָ֣ה אֱלֹֽהֵיכֶ֔ם אֲשֶׁ֧ר אָנֹכִ֛י מְצַוֶּ֥ה אֶתְכֶ֖ם הַיּֽוֹם׃ וְהַקְּלָלָ֗ה אִם־לֹ֤א תִשְׁמְעוּ֙ אֶל־מִצְוֺת֙ יְהוָ֣ה אֱלֹֽהֵיכֶ֔ם וְסַרְתֶּ֣ם מִן־הַדֶּ֔רֶךְ אֲשֶׁ֧ר אָנֹכִ֛י מְצַוֶּ֥ה אֶתְכֶ֖ם הַיּ֑וֹם… See, this day I set before you, blessing and curse: blessing, that you listen to the commandments of Adonai your God that I enjoin upon you this

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Returning From Spiritual Exile

Jerusalem isn’t just the physical entity of a city. Jerusalem is a concept that evokes our spiritual aspiration for unity. In Tisha B’Av, as we commemorate the destruction of the Earthly Jerusalem, we also recognize the beginning of a spiritual exile. Through the text we connect with the tears of our ancestors, weeping by the waters of Babylon and yearning

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Redemption and Renewal /A reflection on Parashat Metzorah & Shabbat Hagadol

“Passover preparations should go beyond Matzoh balls and Gefilte Fish; Now is the season to prepare our spirits and to dedicate the time to recognize what are our lesions and wounds, what are the painful marks that are gradually covering your essence and becoming your identity.” Parashat Metzora speaks about the Tzara’at, a disfiguring skin disease, but which is also

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