What would it take for us to stop what we are doing? Eikev, the name of this Sidra means: since or because, but it also means heel, the part of our bodies that connects us to earth, the component upon which everything else stands. Tonight, originally, I wanted to talk about foundational – core values as a general concept. HoweverRead more
Category Archives: Writings
Often our education and our conversations tend to eradicate complexities, as an attempt to avoid discomfort within our communal households. When this applies to our Israel education, a common outcome of the approach is the creation of an “in love” state of mind toward the state of Israel. Now, being in love is a great feeling but is not enough for a lasting relationship, and very often the next step to that status is disappointment, frustration and break-up.
So how do we move from the “in-love” status into a loving relationship?
“Love comes from listening. Love is born in an awareness that eradicates obliviousness and indifference”.
While I don’t think I know a Jew who isn’t opposed to racism and who doesn’t feel a deep connection and moral obligation toward the injustice that African Americans experience, many of us feel deeply conflicted with the movement “Black Lives Matter”. Many of us, myself included, felt deeply hurt by the statements in the political platform of this movement against Israel. There is an article that was published in The Atlantic in 2016 that summarizes several of the responses that the Jewish community then offered. During the last couple of weeks in the aftermath of George Floyd’s murder many Rabbis and thinkers have written about their position regarding how to navigate this tension.Read more
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 destroyingRead more
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 theRead more
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.Read more
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 thisRead more
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 yearningRead more
“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 alsoRead more
One of the most rewarding things that we experience, is when you finalize a work, to look at it and to rejoice in that creation! This Torah portion, Parashat Pekudei, is indeed that rewarding moment. The Ohel Moed – the tent of meeting that surrounds the Tabernacle is ready, the garments for the priest are ready and all theRead more