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The Second Chapter of Mishnayoth Megila opens with “Whoever reads the Megila out of order does not fulfill one’s obligation.” Rabbi Baruch of Mezibush ZT’L ZY’A offered an alternative reading that one does not fulfill one’s obligation to read the Megila if it read as something that happened in the past. Even though Purim is not commanded by the Torah as it celebrates events that transpired towards the end of the prophetic era, several centuries after Moshe Our Teacher its lessons like the…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on February 21, 2013 at 7:04pm — No Comments
Though there is a D-vine promise that Jewry would never be eradicated what is there that testifies to the Jews’ status as an eternal people. A companion question is what leaves the Jewish people vulnerable? What fortifies them?
Interestingly part of the answer shows a connection with the Sidra Terumah and the coming holiday of Purim. Terumah begins a discussion regarding the Temple’s forerunner the Tabernacle. The Tabernacle, the vessels associated with worship and the priests’…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on February 15, 2013 at 5:20am — No Comments
This is being written in honor of Rafi N’Y’s Bar Mitzvah This Shabbat MAZAL TOV to all of his Parents, Grandparents, Aunts, Uncles , Cousins, Siblings, Rabbis, Teachers, Classmates and of course Rafi!!!
Three events coincide this Shabbat, Parashat Mishpatim, The coming new month of Adar is blessed and a special Torah reading and Haftorah for Parashat Shekalim. The Parasha stands in dramatic contrast to last week’s. Yitro details the events leading up to and the experience of the Law…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on February 7, 2013 at 8:22pm — No Comments
Calling what G-D communicated at Sinai The Ten Commandments is a bit of a misnomer. The Hebrew term is Asereth HaDibruth, The Ten Statements. While the whole Torah is an articulation of G-D’s will it stands to reason that whatever was revealed at Sinai in the presence of the whole nation under miraculous circumstances is something fundamental to Judaism. Arguably, since the number of letters used in the Asereth HaDibruth (Shemoth 20:2-14) equals the total number of commandments. However,…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on January 31, 2013 at 9:44pm — No Comments
Parashat Bo describes the Exodus of Bene Yisrael from Egypt, Rabbi Yisrael Zvi of Kassin ZT;L ZY’A the author of Sefer of Ohr Maleh told this story about Rav Moshe Lieb of Sassov ZT’L ZY’A annually on the Shabbat when Parashat Bo.
On Shabbat Parashat Bo one year a most remarkable event took place in Rav Moshe Lieb Sassover’s congregation. That Friday night after sating the evening prayer Rabbi Moshe Lieb ZT’L ZY’A began reciting the Hall prayer as is the custom on the first nights of…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on January 17, 2013 at 6:40pm — No Comments
Pharaoh responded to Moshe Our Teacher’s first demand to let Bene Yisrael go by intensifying the circumstances of the servitude by no longer supplying straw. The Slaves now had to gather their own straw and maintain the same levels of brick production (see Shemoth Chapter 5) Moshe called out “ . . . L-rd, why have You done evil to this people? Why have You sent me?
. For since I came to Pharaoh to speak in Your name, he has done evil to this people; neither have you saved your people at…
Added by Bernard S. Antin on January 10, 2013 at 7:00pm — No Comments
What prompted G-D to send Moshe Our Teacher A’H to Egypt as G-D’s emissary? Moshe is charged by G-D to appear before Pharaoh to demand the release of Bene Yisrael from servitude, in Shemoth Chapter 3. What happened beforehand? Chapter 2 concludes “ And it came to pass in process of time, that the king of Egypt died; and the people of Israel sighed because of the slavery, and they cried, and their cry came up to G-d because of the slavery. And G-d heard their cries, and G-d remembered his…Continue
Blessing one’s children Friday night is a long standing custom (See B’air Haitaiv Orach Chaim 262 note 2, Yeshuoth Chochma 76:6). Friday night is particularly appropriate for bestowing blessings because of the additional spirituality one receives on Shabbat. The additional Shabbat Soul (see Shemot 31:17) allows for all not just righteous Zaddikim the ability to bless others. This added dimension removes any obstacles preventing the flow of blessings (see Siddur Chelkat Yehoshua for Shabbat…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on December 27, 2012 at 9:26pm — No Comments
A group of the Maggid of Mezritch’s students were perplexed by the talmudic dictum “As one recites a blessing when experiencing good fortune so too one should recite a blessing over misfortune ” (Talmud; Berachot 58b) How could this be? The Maggid answered “Go and seek out my student Zushia. He can explain this teaching.
The students sought out Rabbi Meshulom Zushia ZT’L ZY’A and became even more perplexed Rav Zushia lived in extreme poverty, the patches covering the holes in his…
Added by Bernard S. Antin on December 20, 2012 at 5:30pm — No Comments
Hanukkah is celebrated with a blessing praising G-D for “ . . . working miracles in the past during this season” Rashi ZT’L ZY’A famously commented on the Talmud’s question (Shabbat 21b) What is Hanukkah? Based on which miracle was the holiday established? The Talmud continues by briefly outlining the story and that because the cruse of pure oil lasted for eight days instead of one a holiday marked with praise and thanksgiving was declared.
However what is not discussed is what is a…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on December 12, 2012 at 7:54pm — No Comments
The first Rebbe of Ger the Chdushai HaRim ZT’L ZY’A wrote concerning Hanukkah “ , , , If all of Israel were not worthy of experiencing a miracle The Menorah’s lamps would not have been lit. After all the Menorah is communal property belonging to the whole of Jewry. Raising all Israel to that level is indeed a great miracle” (Chidushai HaRim al HaTorah pg. 56)
Though historically speaking it would be another twenty or so year before the last of the Syrian Greek forces leave liberation…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on December 6, 2012 at 5:13pm — No Comments
Added by Fern Sidman on November 30, 2012 at 9:26am — No Comments
Added by Fern Sidman on November 30, 2012 at 9:24am — No Comments
A common refrain in Chassidic literature is the Torah is eternal and is applicable in all places and all times. The notion is the Torah’s lessons and guidance even if only on some subtile philosophic / ethical level has contemporary relevance. Consequently the narrative in Bereshith Chapter 34 concerning Sachem’s violation of Dina and how her Father and brothers responded should not be seen simplisticly as a reaction to the attack against the family’s honor. Rather than an event in early…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on November 30, 2012 at 5:38am — No Comments
Expectations based on stereotypes are often misleading. More often the reality is far more interesting and illuminating. The Talmud Shabbat 49a speak about doves. A dove’s wings stand out because they serve to protect the bird. Both Rashi ZT’L ZY’A and Tosefoth ZT’L ZY’A both note doves are unique because they can stay aloft using only one wing.
Tosefoth observes other birds need to be land bound when they rest but not so the dove who can fly with a single wing can rest a tired wings…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on November 23, 2012 at 6:59am — No Comments
RADICAL ISLAMIST TURNS ARDENT ZIONIST: THE STORY OF KASIM HAFEEZ
BY: FERN SIDMAN
On Thursday evening, November 15th, a audience of several hundred people sat in rapt attention at Temple Israel on New York City's upper east side, as they heard the compelling narrative of a most unusual man. Kasim Hafeez, 28, is a British born Muslim of Pakistani descent who was raised in an environment where he was taught that "Jews control the world, and Israel is at fault for just about…Continue
Added by Fern Sidman on November 21, 2012 at 12:59am — No Comments
Added by Fern Sidman on November 21, 2012 at 12:53am — No Comments
Added by Joseph on November 18, 2012 at 7:45am — No Comments
The relationship between Yaakov and Esau is easily described as epic. Their Mother the Matriarch Rivka was fore told how dramatic the schism between her twins would be (see Bereshith 25:22_23). Each son developed in his own direction, Esau as a man of the field, a hunter whereas Yaakov was a scholar ensconced within the academy’s walls (25:27).
However what marks Esau’s departure from his parents’ home would be when he sold Yaakov the Birthright of a firstborn son (25:29-34). The…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on November 15, 2012 at 8:42pm — No Comments
Sodom and Gemorah were introduced in Lech lecha as “ . . . like the garden of the L-rd, like the land of Egypt, as you come to Zoar.” (Bereshith 13:10). However the populace is described as “But the men of Sodom were exceedingly wicked and sinners before the Lord” (Bereshith 13:13). Unfortunately even Avraham Avinu A”H going to war on their behalf (see Bereshith Chapter 14) Sodom persisted in its behaviors “And the L-rd said, Because the cry of Sodom and Gomorrah is great, and because their…Continue
Added by Bernard S. Antin on November 1, 2012 at 6:00pm — No Comments