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OU Staff

The “Mishkan” in “Eretz Yisrael”

July 19, 2011, by

After the Jewish People entered the Land of Israel, they conquered the Land, under the visible leadership of Yehoshua bin Nun, disciple of and successor to Moshe, then divided it among the Tribes using a “lottery,” both actions, conquest and division, under the invisible leadership and direction of HaShem. During this period, the spiritual center […]

The Times of the “Mishkan” in the Wilderness

July 19, 2011, by

In his Introduction to “Sefer Shemot,” the RAMBAN indicates that one of the central themes in the second of the five Books of Moses is the regaining by the Jewish People of the level of closeness with the Divine Presence that had existed at the end of “Sefer Bereshit,” the first Book, between the Divine […]

Parshat Chayei Sarah: Eliezer is Sent to Find a Wife for Yitzchak

July 18, 2011, by

Parshat Chayei Sarah describes the mission of Eliezer, the servant of Avraham, to Avraham’s ancestral home, in order to find a wife for Yitzchak. The miracles that were performed for Eliezer during this mission are detailed, indicating that HaShem the Great Matchmaker, has selected Rivkah to be the bride of Yitzchak. When Eliezer returns from […]

“The Love Story,” A Tragedy with a Happy Ending!

July 18, 2011, by

One way of looking at Jewish History is that it is a “love story,” where the “main characters” are HaShem and the Jewish People (in fact, that is the theme of “Shir HaShirim,” the Song of Songs). The following is a micro-micro-miniature version of the same theme. There are moments of great closeness, and there […]

Because of Kamtza and Bar-Kamtza Yerushalayim was Destroyed

July 18, 2011, by

“Rabbi Yochanan said, ‘What is the meaning of the verse in The Book of “Mishlei” (Proverbs 28) which reads, ‘Fortunate is the one who is always fearful, but the one who is hard of heart will suffer misfortune?’ It was because of ‘Kamtza and Bar-Kamtza’ that Yerushalayim was destroyed …” “For there was a certain […]

Torah Study on Tisha B’Av

July 18, 2011, by

On Tisha B’Av, unlike any other occasion, except for the “Shiva,” the seven-day period of mourning for a loved one, there exists a prohibition to study the Torah. This is because the study of Torah is considered a delight and a source of joy, as King David says in Tehilim, “The Laws of Hashem are […]

Digest of The Laws of Tisha B’Av and the Three Weeks

July 18, 2011, by

HALAKHA GUIDE / הלכות (According to the Ashkenazic practice) Notes in [brackets] based upon contributions from Rabbi Ari Kahn, whom we thank for his valuable input! Abbreviations A.H. = Arukh HaShulĥan B.H. = Biur Halakha E.Y. = Even Yisrael (Fischer) K.H. = Kaf HaĤayim K.S.A. = Kitzur Shulĥan Arukh M.B. = Mishna Berura M.H. = […]

About the Three Weeks: A Chronology of Destruction

July 18, 2011, by

The following is a list of the major events leading up to the destruction of the First and Second Temples in Jerusalem. First Temple: 3316 Yehoyakim ben Yoshiyahu becomes King of Judea (II Kings 23:36) 3320 Nebuchadnezzar, King of Babylon conquers Judea. He removes part of the Temple’s holy vessels and children of the royal […]

Fast of the 17th of Tammuz: Historical Background & Customs

July 18, 2011, by

The 17th day in the Jewish month of Tammuz, Jews the world over fast and lament to commemorate the many calamities that have befallen our people on this ominous day. The purpose of such fasts in the Jewish calendar is, according to Rabbi Eliyahu Kitov’s Book of Our Heritage, “to awaken hearts towards repentance through […]

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