Category: Religion

Pathetic Persecutors – parshas Shemos

As the Jewish population in ancient Egypt swelled, the Torah tells us that vayakutzu — The Egyptians “were disgusted” (Shemos 1:12).  Rashi explains that “they were disgusted with their [own] lives.” A superficial reading...

The Supreme Court Did Its Job

An opinion piece I wrote for NBC about recent Supreme Court rulings on religious gatherings can be read here. And, although I can’t post my weekly Ami column here, links to them can be...

Thinking Out of the Box

Yaakov famously sequestered Dinah his daughter in a box as he prepared to meet Esav his brother. That, according to the Midrash Rabbah brought by Rashi (Beraishis 32:23). His reason for hiding Dinah, the...

“If Only…”

It’s human nature, when faced with something tragic, or even just disturbing, to say to oneself, “If only…” “If only I had done this… or we had done that… or not done this… or...

Plumbing the Meaning of the Torah’s First Word

The Torah’s first verse is purposely unclear.  As the Ramban, Nachmanides, points out, the deepest truths of how the universe was created are unfathomable and inscrutable, hidden, ultimately, in the realm of mysticism, not...

The Devarim-Beraishis Bridge Idea

The Chasam Sofer notes that the Torah’s last word, “Yisrael” and its first one, “Braishis,” share the letters aleph, shin, resh and yud… spelling ashrei. Ashrei can be translated as “praiseworthy” or “fortunate.”  That...

The Threesome Chain

Over the past few weeks, I have been sending out short thoughts on the upcoming parsha to my list of subscribers, who receive links to my Ami Magazine column and other things that might...

My Final Post on the “Open Letter”

And so the pilpul chaverim — and chaverim we are and will always be — goes on! But this will, bl”n, be my final posting about the much discussed (b”H) open letter about Torah...

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