One of the interesting paradoxes of human life is our tendency to copy one another and to try to “fit in" with friends and acquaintances, while simultaneously trying to be distinct from others, and to be our “own person."
It was November, 1938. Dark clouds were gathering over all of Europe, and particularly over the Jewish communities in countries like Poland and Lithuania. Although few foresaw the horrific extent of the Holocaust that lay ahead, everyone knew that those communities were in very grave danger.
Let’s Open Our Sefarim This Yom Yerushalayim Historians have long distinguished between two types of great leaders. On the one hand, there are those who are gifted with mighty talents and unusually powerful personalities. But they are essentially inward people who are not particularly gregarious and whose greatness often sets them at a distance […]
The conditions under which we live are many and varied. Some of us live in very comfortable, even idyllic, surroundings. Others struggle with diverse hardships, including poverty, disease, and the conditions of war. Our people have known unspeakably extreme conditions, such as those experienced during the Holocaust. Throughout history, we have learned to obey God’s […]
I am proud of my large library of Jewish books. My collection, which my wife half-jokingly refers to as my addiction, began on my 11th birthday with a gift from my maternal grandparents, may they rest in peace.
He was an old man, and in many ways came from a very different world than I. And yet he taught me more than anyone else ever did. One of the things he taught me was that no one suffers as much as a parent who loses a child.
I am not a big fan of the two- or three-word mottos which often appear on bumper stickers. I must confess, though, that I once succumbed to the temptation of hanging such a motto on my office door. It was long ago when I was in a work setting with several other workers. One put […]
Would you ever consider Rembrandt a leader? How about Mozart, or Frank Lloyd Wright? Each of them was certainly a leader in his own field, but none of them was an individual who had a public following, or who had an influence upon a nation or community. Rembrandt deserved his fame as an artist; Mozart, […]
I always experience a sense of excitement when I begin a new book. I am convinced that most avid readers feel the same way. This Shabbat gives us an opportunity to experience that excitement as we begin a new book, the book of Leviticus, and Parshat Vayikra. The book, or chumash, of Leviticus has historically […]