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The Suffering of the Jewish People is Evidence of Providence
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Behold, I place before you today a blessing and a curse. (Devarim 11:26) The Talmud, in Mesechet Ketubot, relates a tragic incident that occurred after the destruction of the Temple. Raban Yochanan ben Zakai and his students were traveling from Yerushalayim. The group came upon a poor woman. In order to sustain herself, she was […]
Re’eh 5771
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Re’eh – 27 August 2011 – 27 Av 5771 Listen to these stories. Behind them lies an extraordinary insight into the nature of Jewish ethics: Story 1. Rabbi Abba used to bind money in his scarf, sling it on his back, and place it at the disposal of the poor. [Ketubot 67b] Story 2. Mar […]
Parshat Re’eh: The Prohibition of Unauthorized Praises
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“You shall not do thus to Hashem your G-d.” (Devarim 12:4) Moshe commands the people that they should uproot all objects of idolatrous worship from the land. He then enjoins the nation not to treat Hashem in this manner. Rashi explains the simple meaning of the pasuk. It is prohibited to destroy any stone of […]
Parshat Re’eh: The Dangers of Entrapment
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“Take care lest you become entrapped by them after they have been destroyed before you. You should not seek their gods asking, “how did these nations worship their gods; I also will do so.” Do not do so to Hashem your G-d. This is because they did for their gods all sorts of abominations that […]
Eikev 5771
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Eikev – 20 August 2011 – 20 Av 5771 What is the real challenge of maintaining a free society? In parshat Ekev, Moses springs his great surprise. Here are his words: Be careful that you do not forget the Lord your God . . . Otherwise, when you eat and are satisfied, when you build […]
Va’etchanan 5771
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Va’etchanan – 13 August 2011 – 13 Av 5771 It is one of the great stories of all time, and Moses foresaw it three thousand years before it happened. Here he is speaking in this week’s parsha: See, I have taught you decrees and laws as the Lord my God commanded me, so that you […]