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Love Is Not Enough
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Judaism is supremely a religion of love: three loves. “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul and with all your might.” “You shall love your neighbour as yourself.” And “You shall love the stranger, for you were once strangers in a strange land.”[1] Not only is Judaism […]
Feet on the Ground, Head in the Sky
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Our parasha begins with Yaakov on the run; every aspect of his life is complicated. Although he leaves his hometown laden with blessings, at least some of these blessings were obtained under false pretenses. His relationships with each of the members of his family are clouded by these blessings, as is the journey on which […]
Did Yaakov Steal the Berachos?
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For seventeen years, I had the privilege to study one-on-one with Rav Yaakov Weinberg, zt’l, Rosh Hayeshiva of Yeshivat Ner Yisrael of Baltimore. Rav Weinberg was one of the Torah luminaries of the 20th century, and he had a profound impact on the lives of thousands of his students, not to mention his students’ students […]
Was Jacob Right To Take Esau’s Blessing?
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Was Jacob right to take Esau’s blessing in disguise? Was he right to deceive his father and to take from his brother the blessing Isaac sought to give him? Was Rivka right in conceiving the plan in the first place and encouraging Jacob to carry it out? These are fundamental questions. What is at stake […]