Author: Avi Shafran

Chagrined by AOC’s Reaction

I have defended Congresswoman Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez on a number of occasions in several public venues.  But I was chagrined by her reaction to the recent Hamas/Israel war, and express why here.

Parshas Naso- An Opportunity, Not an Ordeal

I cringe when I read someone’s portrayal of the law of Sotah ritual as some sort of “trial by ordeal.” That phrase conjures images like the 17th century Salem witch trials, when Puritans invoked...

Happy Anniversary

In contrast to Pesach’s matzos and Sukkos’ sukkos and arba minim, Shavuos is unique among the Shalosh Regalim for its lack of any positive ritual-commandment. That may have to do with the holiday’s association...

Parshas Bamidbar – Desert and Direction

The sefer of Bamidbar (or, to be pedantic, B’midar) begins with the word Vayidaber; and the Talmud Yerushalmi, I’ve seen it cited, even calls the sefer by that latter word. Both words, as it...

Two Paths to the Happy End of History

Between the lines of the terrible description in parshas Bechukosai of what will happen if Klal Yisrael abandons the mitzvos of Hashem lie subtle hints to the limits and end of those curses.  The...

Hasidim, yeshivas and truth

Hasidim, yeshivas and the truth By AVI SHAFRAN NEW YORK DAILY NEWS |- Opinion MAY 02, 2021 AT 5:00 AM There’s been a full-court press of late against Hasidic education in New York by...

Parshas Emor – Embracing Our Worlds

A strange and strangely familiar phrase is found in Rashi, commenting on the Torah’s introduction of the account of the mekalel, the blasphemer, with “And he went out” (Vayikra, 24:10) Rashi, quoting Rabi Levi...

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