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Rabbi's Blog

Rabbi Mendel's Blog

Rabbi Mendel's blog features his Dvar Torah (Torah lesson) column from the weekly E-TORAH, ocassional musings and other articles that he authors from time to time.
Your comments are welcome.

A Letter in the Scroll

Over 4 million iPhones were ordered on the first day that Apple released the iPhone 6. Soon we will also have the Apple Watch.  As technology gets easier to produce in miniature, we will see even more products with greater capabilities than ever before.

This is a real boon for Torah enthusiasts, who are itching to look up a verse or study the Talmud on the fly. Okay, granted that most people may not have that in mind as its primary use. But for ardent – and lackadaisical – students and adherents, the opportunities to study and engage in Jewish ritual have never been so close to our fingertips.

Can you imagine how much effort was necessary for our grandparents to study Torah? And they had it easy compared to those who… Read More »

Light at the End of the Tunnel

If you were mining for gold, but had no idea whether the earth beneath you contained gold deposits, you might be quickly discouraged when faced with long, hard hours of strenuous activity.

If you were asked to teach someone algebra, but did not believe they were capable of comprehending the lesson, you may soon be tempted to throw in the towel.

But if you saw gold and knew that with effort you would be able to collect it, or if your student showed signs of remarkable aptitude, your excitement and confidence toward attaining your objective would give you great joy. Instead of fretting and growing despondent about the job looming in front of you, you might tackle it with vigor.

When we see the light at the end of the tunnel &ndash… Read More »

The Accidental Hero

Umberto Eco once wrote, “The real hero is always a hero by mistake; he dreams of being an honest coward like everybody else.”

We’ve all heard stories of people that accidentally saved the day. They were just in the right place at the right time.  They did not intend to be heroes. Yet Divine Providence brought them to such acclaim.

Are such people deserving of credit? What if they put forth no effort whatsoever? What if they were trying to do something else and inadvertently did something heroic? What if they intended harm, but instead the act was one of unexpected valor?

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This week’s parsha, Ki Tetzei, talks about many mitzvot. One of them is called Shikchah, meaning forgotten. The Torah states: When you… Read More »

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