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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.

Earth-Centric

I wish I never heard of Uvalde. That’s the way it was a week ago.

Tragically, we have all heard of the horrific attack on teachers and schoolchildren at Robb Elementary School.

Our hearts go out to the families that have suffered unthinkable losses this week.

As they seek peace in their anguish and sorrow, let us share with them that their loss is our loss.

And, let us pledge to do our utmost that this never occur again. Protecting our most innocent and vulnerable must be our highest priority.

One of the refrains we hear often about these pure souls that have been mercilessly taken from their families is that they are now in a good place, in a spiritual space with G-d.

I hope that gives the families some comfort.

But, I hope… Read More »

All in the Family

In the Torah’s laws against usury and cheating we find an interesting verse in this week’s Parsha of Behar. “And when you make a sale to your fellow Jew or make a purchase from the hand of your fellow Jew, one man shall not wrong his brother.”

There are many details to the laws of interest and ethical business dealings. What’s strange here, however, is the end of the verse. Why is the Torah saying, “One man shall not wrong his brother?”  The Torah already included everyone by saying “your fellow.”

***

Perhaps there is a greater lesson here as parents, children and extended family members.

It seems that we often put a little extra financial burden on family members.  We… Read More »

Countup

Next week my daughter Chavi will turn twelve years old. According to Jewish tradition she will become a Bas Mitzvah, an adult.

As you can imagine, she has been preparing earnestly for this moment. In fact, as parents, my wife and I  have endeavored to prepare her for the last twelve years.

She is eagerly counting down toward this special moment when she takes her place among the Daughters of Israel. Her anticipation is palpable.

How can we ensure that her attainment of maturity is a time she embraces her role as a proud Jewish woman? What can we do to secure an active and enthusiastic Jewish future for our young adults?

This week’s Torah portion, Emor, speaks of a mitzvah we are currently engaged in – the counting of… Read More »

A Vote for Seniors

“Look thirty years younger!” the ad exclaims.  Anti-aging creams, hair-dyes, diets and better climates are all promoted to encourage us to prevent the inevitable aging of our bodies.  As a society we seem to abhor old age.

“Many years impart wisdom,” we are taught in the book of Iyov (Job).   Yet this advice seems hard to come by in today’s society.  More and more, the elderly are nudged out of the way to make room for the younger, more ‘vibrant’ segment of society.

Whether it’s in the workforce, in communal affairs, or family life – those with the longest of years often get the short end of the stick.

In this week’s Parsha of Kedoshim we read that… Read More »

Looking for older posts? See the sidebar for the Archive.