Parshat ha Shavuah Verses –Chayei Sarah

There are not too many women whose stories are told in detail in the Torah. Sarah is one of these unique women that merits this validation from the Rabbis:”Avraham was secondary to Sarah in prophecy” (Shemot Raba 1:1). This woman was outstandingly beautiful, wise, modest and strong-willed at the same time. Yet, her death was…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Vayera

This week is all about families and Gd. Avraham talks to Gd one way or the other many times. However, Sarah is the personality I am interested in. ו  וַיְמַהֵר אַבְרָהָם הָאֹהֱלָה, אֶל-שָׂרָה; וַיֹּאמֶר, מַהֲרִי שְׁלֹשׁ סְאִים קֶמַח סֹלֶת–לוּשִׁי, וַעֲשִׂי עֻגוֹת. 6 And Abraham hastened into the tent unto Sarah, and said: ‘Make ready quickly three…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Lech Lecha

There are two very significant points for me in this week’s Parshah לֶךְ-לְךָ Lech Lecha. First comes from an amazing shiur of Rabbi Sacks, the former Chief Rabbi of Great Britain. He argues that if we look closer at the text of the previous Parshah:  וַיִּקַּח תֶּרַח אֶת-אַבְרָם בְּנוֹ, וְאֶת-לוֹט בֶּן-הָרָן בֶּן-בְּנוֹ, וְאֵת שָׂרַי כַּלָּתוֹ, אֵשֶׁת אַבְרָם בְּנוֹ;…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Noach

  וְנֹחַ, מָצָא חֵן בְּעֵינֵי יְהוָה But Noah found grace in the eyes of the LORD (Genesis 6:8) אֵלֶּה, תּוֹלְדֹת נֹחַ–נֹחַ אִישׁ צַדִּיק תָּמִים הָיָה, בְּדֹרֹתָיו:  אֶת-הָאֱלֹהִים, הִתְהַלֶּךְ-נֹחַ These are the generations of Noah. Noah was in his generations a man righteous and whole-hearted; Noah walked with God (Genesis 6:9) Did you ever notice that…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Beresheet

I have decided to try writing a few lines about each parsha – פָּרָשָׁה.  I guess, we shall see where it takes me. Of course, I am not making any promises – so bli neder. Again, this is not poetry, just words coming out to offer my view on things. Here we are in the week of…

Cold. In and Out.

Today is one of those beautiful windy and cold days when my heart does not know whether to be joyful before the upcoming Simchat Torah or to be crying over people lost recently and long time ago. This kind of weather usually makes me sink down into my dark thoughts. Last night I was dreaming about my loved…

Sweet Smells of Autumn

What is happening now in New York is called Indian Summer in the US and Бабье лето in Russia It is really the perfect weather for Sukkot. This year it came so late that I was worried about sitting in a cold and wet sukkah. However, Gd gave us a miracle of this warmth that somehow allows…

At the Crossroads

I was listening to this song the other day Is this how our lives go? The road to eternity is long – I will yet come back. What we do here on earth in our lifetimes, does it really make an effect on eternity? Do we really meet the souls we loved here somewhere in the…

Baking for Sukkot

The sounds of hammers working around my neighborhood are getting more urgent as the last sukkot are being erected. The smells of etrogim permeate the air. The work in the kitchen is no less hectic for many women who are fortunate to have their own homes, but on Sukkot get to work five times as hard providing…

A Private Beit Midrash?

Right in the middle of ימים נוראים – Yomim Noraim I find myself thinking about a dilemma: on the one hand, I am totally excited to organize a beit midrash at my house and give the people an opportunity to learn in a non-threatening environment. On the other hand – this is something I am not able to share…

Reading Shivhei ha-Besht

My love of learning anything concerning Jewish history brought me this time to a class on early Hasidism. //ws-na.amazon-adsystem.com/widgets/q?ServiceVersion=20070822&OneJS=1&Operation=GetAdHtml&MarketPlace=US&source=ac&ref=tf_til&ad_type=product_link&tracking_id=noshingacro07-20&marketplace=amazon&region=US&placement=1568211473&asins=1568211473&linkId=9c0e9d167ee0056d2e148390ddfec4d2&show_border=false&link_opens_in_new_window=false&price_color=333333&title_color=0066c0&bg_color=ffffff” target=”_blank” rel=”noopener”>The book I bought for the class was first published in Hebrew in 1814 or 1815 from an earlier manuscript written by Rabbi Dov Ber ben Shmuel. The stories are remarkable on several levels, but…

Verses, Vegetarianism, Variations on Life.

Do you have days when you have more questions in your life than answers? And then other days – something that was foggy for a long time suddenly becomes clear? No matter how hard the decision is, you realize that it is the one you had to make a while ago, and no amount of…