Just Because

Today, when we are about to read Parshat Toldot talking among other things about a family, all I can think of is the prospect of it – a fleeting tiny breath of fresh air. These days my heart races from heaven to hell and back twenty times a day. Being used to misery in my…

Of Life and Death

Any Holiday Shabbat is hard for me. Shabbat during Yamim Noraim is harder. This is the time when I think of my life many years ago, the mistakes I made, the wrong decisions, and finally, my assumptions that these somehow paved the way to the death of the person I loved the most. By now,…

Random Stuff from My Heart

I was ready. SO ready for spring. I saw some buds coming out and hoped for the best. Hoped that this long winter was over. My hopes in vain, I am looking outside dreading the picture I see. Is it because I am such a warm weather person, or am I just missing you as…

The Cycle Continues – Noah / נח

As promised, I am posting the D’var Torah from another teacher, this time Dena Weiss from Mechon Hadar. I hope you enjoy her take on Noah. For me, the eternal question – was Noah a true tzaddik or just better than everyone in that generation, is answered with a strong – true tzaddik! How many times can we stand to…

Roller-Coaster During Yamim Noraim / ימים נוראים

These Days of Awe –  ימים נוראים have been very challenging for me so far. Is the Universe trying to tell me something that I refuse to hear? Right after Rosh haShana my body started to give in somehow. Yesterday, I decided to defy the pain and walk to a Community Beit Midrash Kick off at Mechon…

Random Verses Inspired by Pain

We are within The Days of Awe, The Days of Repentance, the days we are supposed to look inside and resolve to be better, to forgive others. To forgive ourselves. It is so easy to forgive others. Everyone has a story, a reason, a pain they cannot deal with, and therefore, are hurting those who…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Ki Tavo /כִּי-תָבוֹא

We are commanded to bring the first fruits of our labor “unto the place which the LORD thy God shall choose to cause His name to dwell there” and speak to our Gd: י  וְעַתָּה, הִנֵּה הֵבֵאתִי אֶת-רֵאשִׁית פְּרִי הָאֲדָמָה, אֲשֶׁר-נָתַתָּה לִּי, יְהוָה; וְהִנַּחְתּוֹ, לִפְנֵי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ, וְהִשְׁתַּחֲוִיתָ, לִפְנֵי יְהוָה אֱלֹהֶיךָ. 10 And now, behold, I have…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses Shoftim / שֹׁפְטִים

People think about different things when their minds drift away from the task at hand. Being super busy now at work, I somehow still always manage to find my way to Israel in my mind.  And today I am missing it so much it hurts. Maybe one of the reasons is that here, in the…

Just One Verse in the Dread of New York Summer

Over Shabbat I was trying to walk. All I could master was a few blocks to Ocean Parkway, where I found no relief and the same few blocks back home. All I could think of was my walk to the Grand Synagogue of Jerusalem two summers ago. The heat was much worse. The  air was…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses Re’eh / ראה

This is a Parshah of choices. To go right or left. To live or to die. To walk straight or in curved lines. כו  רְאֵה, אָנֹכִי נֹתֵן לִפְנֵיכֶם–הַיּוֹם:  בְּרָכָה, וּקְלָלָה. 26 Behold, I set before you this day a blessing and a curse: כז  אֶת-הַבְּרָכָה–אֲשֶׁר תִּשְׁמְעוּ, אֶל-מִצְו‍ֹת יְהוָה אֱלֹהֵיכֶם, אֲשֶׁר אָנֹכִי מְצַוֶּה אֶתְכֶם, הַיּוֹם. 27 the blessing, if ye…

Bread Therapy

So today is Tu bi Av. Lovely to spend it alone, feeling miserable and listening to the sound of the rain outside, isn’t it? So the whole day I was working on my computer feeling like you know what. Finally, I realized that I had to do something therapeutic. So I decided to make the…

Parshat ha Shavuah Verses – Emor / פרשת אמור

These are such loaded Parshiot! So many things to discuss, it’s hard to pick. Books can be written in modern politically correct world about the lines devotes to who is allowed to come close to the “congregation of GD” Books can be also written on the question of a blemished sacrifice and why it is…