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Parshat Shmini – Foreign Fire
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How did Nadav and Avihu create the foreign fire? How did they let themselves get to such a low level? Eitan Ungar, New Jersey NCSY, tells us how they got to such a low level and relates it back to us on how we can stay connected.
Yitein and Yutan
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וכי יתן מים על זרע   יא:לח This pasuk teaches us the halacha of hechsher mashkin, that the only way a food item can become tamei (by coming into contact with a sheretz, neveilah, etc.) is if it first came into contact with water (or one of the other seven liquids). The Gemara in Bava Metzia […]
The Dangers of Enthusiasm
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Excavating the history of words can sometimes be as revealing as excavating the ruins of an ancient city. Take the English word “enthusiasm”. Today we see this as something positive. One dictionary defines it as “a feeling of energetic interest in a particular subject or activity and an eagerness to be involved in it.” People […]
Fixing a Broken World
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With the completion of the Mishkan, there was much excitement and anticipation in the Israelite camp. On the day the Mishkan was to become operational, Moshe assured Aharon that the Glory of God would be revealed: God will reveal Himself to you today.’… God’s glory will be revealed to you.’…. (Vayikra 9:4,6) The sign would […]
The Stork and What its Name Means for Us
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Hebrew, filled with beauty and poetic power, is a language in which words carry deep, sacred import in addition to its “plain meaning” and historical context.  Our tradition finds a near-mystical relationship between words and things in assigning numerical values to letters.  By doing so, it suggests that words or phrases that share identical numerical […]