The Arks of Moshe and Noach: so similar yet so STRIKINGLY different. When facing evil and tyranny, we face the test of "fight or flight". Come explore the qualities of leadership found in each of us and developed in Parshat Shemot.
The Talmud tells us when the Jewish people are in exile, God is in exile as well.
But the flip side is also true. As Rav Kook taught, when the Jewish People create light in this world through the observance of the mitzvot, then God’s presence is magnified.
Our schedules are uncertain and our time depends upon factors that are beyond our control. We juggle our work obligations and personal responsibilities around our kids or the needs of our elderly parents. Are we managing our time, or is our time managing us?
Chazal teach that when the Jewish people crossed Yam Suf, they crossed through 12 different paths. Even when we’re all on the same journey, we must all find our own path. We are all part of a symphony, working together toward creating a collective composition.
This year I am reading Parshat Mishpatim with sadness. I ask myself in front of all of you: re we fulfilling the mandate to create a just and civil society? We who set ourselves to be the most committed to Judaism continue to flout safety measures that were enacted to save lives.
An important dialectic of Purim is, on the one hand, the responsibility of defending the nation against sworn enemies - the evil ideology of Amalek. At the same time, we have a responsibility to value every human life and promote peace and community.
Why is a ramp, not stairs, required for the Kohen's ascending the Mizbe'ach? Within this architecture is the guidance in how to ensure that there's no such plateauing in our closest relationships: with Hashem, our spouse, children, grandchildren and community.
I have always wondered why it is that throughout the Torah, the word “Anan”, which connotes confusion and lack of clarity, is used to represent the imminence of God’s Presence. Explore with me for a possible answer.