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Life

Rabbi Shimon and Garfunkel on the UN Vote

January 11, 2017, by

Throughout the Talmudic tractate of Shabbos, there is an ongoing debate between Rabbi Shimon and Rabbi Yehuda regarding what’s called a davar sheino miskaven – something unintentional – with Rabbi Shimon considering such actions permissible on Shabbos and Rabbi Yehuda considering them prohibited. The prototypical example is found on page 29b. There is a Biblical

Remembering Rav Moshe Shapiro zt”l

January 10, 2017, by

It had to be HaRav Moshe Shapiro Shlit”a. When I contemplated whom to honor as sandak for our newborn son with Down syndrome, Rav Moshe was the obvious choice. It wasn’t just because I desired a great and distinguished rav for the role. But it was because he had demonstrated sensitivity to our specific plight.

Midrashim: Don’t Be So Literal

January 3, 2017, by

I have observed a phenomenon among a large number of people who were raised Orthodox but became disenchanted (popularly known as “off-the-derech” or OTD). Many of them have a particular axe to grind: they complain about midrashim, which they find to be childish and simplistic. Now, I’m not suggesting that midrashim drove them away from

Why “Social Justice Warriors” Don’t Care About Israel or Jews

December 27, 2016, by

It’s gratifying that our society has become more open and tolerant. Whether it comes to race, religion, sexual preference or gender identity, there is an expectation of acceptance and accommodation the likes of which has never before existed. What’s frustrating, however, is the one glaring exception: Jews in general and Israel in particular. We get

The Modern-Day Maccabbees: Relive Entebbe 1976

December 22, 2016, by

2016 represents the 40th anniversary of the Israel Defense Force’s miraculous rescue of over 100 hostages whose Paris bound Air France Airbus was hijacked by cruel terrorists. After their heroic return, Menachem Begin referred to the Israeli commandos who risked their lives flying thousands of miles from home as “Dor Makabim Bi’yameinu” modern day Maccabees.

4 Simple Ways To Stop Criticizing Your Kids

December 21, 2016, by

“I know I am overly critical, but I can’t seem to stop myself!” “My kids get hurt and upset when I tell them what to do. Am I being too harsh?” “I had huge doses of criticism from my parents and I don’t want to do that to my kids. What can I do instead?”

Rabbi Shaul Robinson of LSS Calls for Prayers for Syria

December 15, 2016, by

Dear Friends, As we watch helplessly from afar, a humanitarian catastrophe is unfolding in Syria and in particular the city of Aleppo. Today’s New York Times describes “A Complete Meltdown of Humanity’: Aleppo Civilians Gunned Down as They Flee” . The words ‘Never Again” feel painfully hollow as we witness murder and massacres proceeding with no one

Blessed and Protected

December 7, 2016, by

“May the L-rd make you like Sarah, Rivka, Rachel, and Leah.” The lights in the chandelier are dimmed. Four candles are burning in brass candlesticks on the side table in the next room over. The frenzied rush of cooking, straightening up, and showers has been replaced by a quiet calm. My parents, sister Alexis and

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