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Derech Eretz Kadma l’Torah: To Be a Mensch
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When I was growing up, a friend whose parents were not home when school let out often came to my home after school. We enjoyed our afternoons together; we would do our homework, find something to amuse ourselves with and then have supper. After eating, we benched and then, without exception, before rising from the […]
Unique Blessing: Each Student, Each Person
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The voice said, Cry. And he said, What shall I cry? All flesh is grass, and all its grace is as the flower of the field; The grass withers, the flower fades; when the breath of the Lord blows upon it; surely the people is like grass. The grass withers, the flower fades; but the […]
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 […]
The Blessing of a Father: Isaac’s “Blindness”?
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The choreography of Yaakov’s “theft” of Esav’s blessing is well-known. Favored by Rivkah , he conspires with her to take advantage of his father’s failing eyesight to win Yitzchak’s blessing, leaving Esav, favored by his father, to go without the honor of the first-born. This reading of parshat Toldot makes central the animosity between the […]