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Rabbis Corner

Rabbi’s Corner

Big Ideas go Bankrupt

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | FRI, MAY 20, 2022

“I don’t care if you’re a billion dollar company, in one moment you can go bankrupt,” declared the business tycoon. “That’s ridiculous. A poor strategy can be adjusted. A poor…

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One Step at a Time

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, MAY 12, 2022

In this weeks Torah portion we are given the Mitzva of counting the Omer for the 49 days leading up to Shavuot.   When we think of the wondrous miracles…

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Water the Seeds

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, MAY 05, 2022

“This tree is going to bear luscious and mouth-watering apples. The other is going to bear rotten and dried out apples”. “But, dad, they both look alike. I don’t even…

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Parashat Aharei Mot

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, APR 28, 2022

A student once saw the great sage Hillel leaving his academy. He approached the sage and asked him where he was going. “I am going to do a Mitzva for…

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Rabbi Haim Shaul | TUE, APR 12, 2022

Passover marks the beginning formation of the Jewish nation and our relationship with the Creator. The Haggadah that we all will be reading on the night of Passover revolves around…

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Putting skin in the game

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, APR 07, 2022

You were not the most fit. You were not so skilled. Classmates even viewed you as an under performer. How did you pass all those extreme physical tests in order…

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Parashat Tazria

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, MAR 31, 2022

The affliction of Tzaraat, commonly translated as leprosy, described in the Parashah this week, is not a bodily disease, but the physical manifestation of a spiritual malaise, the result of…

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Aristotle the Human

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, MAR 24, 2022

“You, of all people! How can you do such a thing?!” Aristotle’s students exclaimed in surprise. They were appalled. Their beloved and knowledgeable teacher was caught in the act. “Dear…

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Parashat Tsav

Rabbi Haim Shaul | WED, MAR 16, 2022

King David said, “May goodness and kindness pursue me all the days of my life.” What a strange expression! Goodness and kindness should pursue me, as though I was fleeing…

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Nuclear bomb?

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, MAR 10, 2022

“What’s more powerful than a nuclear bomb? “Cyber warfare” “Perhaps. But, students, what would be far more powerful then both cyber and nuclear warfare?” “Planting a bug or virus into…

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Parashat Pekudei

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, MAR 03, 2022

All the many donations to the Mishkan  were only accepted if they had been attained honestly. Any gifts that might have been tainted by being acquired dishonestly were rejected.  …

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One Mitzvah at a Time!

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, FEB 24, 2022

“I love mother Russia. If I would own a chest of gold and silver I would give it away to Mother Russia.” “WOW! Amazing! But, what about the horse sitting in…

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Parashat Ki Tissa

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, FEB 17, 2022

Following the tragic episode of the golden calf Moses took his tent and set it up outside the camp. He reasoned that since G-d was angry with the people, then…

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Angel or Human

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | FRI, FEB 11, 2022

“My dear parents, if you were to name the most memorable moment of my youth, what would it be?”   “The moment you said, ‘Dad’ and ‘Mom’ was the beginning…

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Parashat Terumah

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, FEB 03, 2022

We read this week of the commandment to build the sanctuary, which accompanied the nation throughout their travels. Surprisingly, to many of our sages, the need for a physical sanctuary…

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Ordinary or Beautiful

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, JAN 26, 2022

“Mom, you only got solid colors. They’re boring. I need to create a beautiful painting. How in the world can I do it with a boring white or blue? “My…

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Parashat Yitro

Rabbi Haim Shaul | WED, JAN 19, 2022

Surprisingly, the most monumental event in Jewish history, the receiving of G-d’s law, is named after Yitro, a gentile. There are many important ideas taught in this small detail. The…

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Lawmakers Vs. Lawbreakers

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, JAN 12, 2022

“Doctor, you’re a world renowned expert in oncology, how is it that you are smoking?” “You’re right that smoking is unhealthy, but it’s all relative. Genetically, I have very strong…

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“Who is the wise person the one who sees the future.”

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, JAN 06, 2022

There is a saying in the Talmud that a person who eats fatty meat may need to hide in the attic, but one who eats vegetables may do so in…

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Parashat Va’era – Are Winners Happy?

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, DEC 30, 2021

Your score came in at 93, you won second place!” “WOW! I can’t believe it!!..YAY…” “Your score is 96, you won first place!!” “Are you sure it was only 96?!…

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Surviving as a Nation

Rabbi Haim Shaul | WED, DEC 22, 2021

These are the names of the children of Israel who came to Egypt with Jacob, each man and his household.” Our tradition tells us that the survival of the Jewish…

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Connecting – Parshat Vayechi

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, DEC 16, 2021

“We both clocked in on time every day, why was Josh the winner for the employee of the month award?” “The award had nothing to do with clocking in on…

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Parashat Vayigash

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, DEC 06, 2021

From the moment Joseph’s brothers set foot in Egypt, they were bewildered by the inexplicable events that were occurring to them. Why is this viceroy accusing us of being spies?…

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Parashat Miketz – Free If Interested

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, DEC 01, 2021

The sign on the store read “Everything must go: FREE for those interested” Jacob was overjoyed, as he stepped up to the checkout; he was shocked to see a bill.…

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Parashat Vayeshev

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, NOV 25, 2021

Jacob, after successfully escaping Lavan’s house and his epic confrontation with his brother Esav, finally returns to his ancestral home, the land of his youth, with his large family and…

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Sweating is Healthy 

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, NOV 18, 2021

“Mom I’m thirsty,” baby duck complained. “My dear, I’ve pushed you to the tip of the pond, all you have to do is open your mouth! That part you’ll need…

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Parashat Va’yeseh

Rabbi Haim Shaul | TUE, NOV 09, 2021

Jacob, alone and afraid, after escaping with his life from his brother Esav is visited in his sleep by the vision of G-d. Immediately upon waking, he took the stone…

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Connections or Connecting

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, NOV 03, 2021

“We were both in the same class and received the same grades, what makes you a better doctor?” “Yes, we both learned the same material, but it seems you forgot…

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Parashat Vayeria – Happily Stuck in Traffic

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | MON, OCT 18, 2021

“You’ve got a huge debt, a tough boss, and you’re stuck in traffic, why in the world are you smiling?” “If I would have a surplus in the bank, be…

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Rabbi Haim Shaul | TUE, OCT 05, 2021

Finding purpose in life is like putting on glasses, it changes one’s vision on life as a whole. Everything is now seen with different lenses, with a deeper perspective.   Purpose…

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Parashat Beresheet

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, SEP 30, 2021

“In the beginning, G-d created the heavens and the earth, and the earth was barren and desolate.” The next 6 days were spent making order out of chaos. A basic…

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Parashat Ha’azinu

Rabbi Haim Shaul | SUN, SEP 12, 2021

Moses, on the final day of his life, chided and implored the nation to fulfill their divine destiny by reflecting on their past experiences and foretelling future calamities if they…

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Shabbat Shuva – Nurture Our Roots

Rabbi Haim Shaul | THU, SEP 09, 2021

Imagine two dignified-looking men sitting across from you. They’re wearing tailored power suits and polished shoes. Instinctively, you feel a sense of respect for them. Suddenly, someone places a name…

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Parashat Nitsavim

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, AUG 30, 2021

“You are standing today, all of you, before G-d” The opening verse of this week’s Parashah alludes to Rosh Hashanah when the entire world stands before G-d to be evaluated…

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Parashat Ki Tavo – Deepest Gift

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, AUG 25, 2021

“Sorry, we refuse your offer”, the men replied. Surprised, the owner of the farm wondered: “Here I am, offering you double pay while relieving you of the toil and sweat that…

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Parashat Ki Teseh

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, AUG 16, 2021

One of the most rewarding yet challenging areas of life is in the arena of human relationships. Relationships add meaning, texture, vitality, and spirituality to our lives and yet are…

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Parashat Shoftim – Thank You

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, AUG 11, 2021

In times gone by, when men would hunt for bears in the wild, they would first send a dog out as “bait”. The dog’s presence would set off a chase…

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Parashat Re’eh – No Good Deed Goes Unrewarded

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, AUG 02, 2021

One of the pillars of our Torah and ingrained character of our nation is the giving of charity. As Maimonides observed in the 12th century, every Jewish community that he…

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Parashat Eikev – Are We Outdated?

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | TUE, JUL 27, 2021

The large clock was the talk of the town. Flawlessly accurate, it kept everyone on schedule. The townspeople had only one problem, the clock was simply too high up. Why…

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Parashat Va’et’hanan – Lessons Around Us

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, JUL 19, 2021

This week we will be reading about the giving of the 10 Commandments, the foundation for moral conduct. The Talmud states, however, that had the Torah not been given, we…

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Parashat Debarim – But, I want

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, JUL 14, 2021

A man is drowning in the ocean and prays to God for help. Moments later, a boat comes by and offers to help him, however, the man refuses. “I’m waiting for…

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Parashat Matot-Masei

Rabbi Haim Shaul | TUE, JUL 06, 2021

Our Parashah this week details the laws concerning unintentional manslaughter caused through negligence. “If a person accidentally kills another, he must be exiled and remain in the city of refuge…

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Parashat Pinhas – Seeing Through The Clutter

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | TUE, JUN 29, 2021

There’s a parable told of a donkey that tripped and fell into a deep pit.   The villagers, assuming the donkey would die, threw dirt into the pit to bury the…

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Parashat Balak – Prioritizing Your Investments

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, JUN 21, 2021

Bilaam is seen in our Parasha, in his interactions with the emissaries of King Balak, as an arrogant man with an insatiable need for honor and riches. Our sages convey…

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Parashat Hukat – Shift Your Attention to Others

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | MON, JUN 14, 2021

“I will adopt two orphans!” Rebi Eliezer announced. “How did you get the courage to take such a huge step?” “I looked at my two boys and realized how little…

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Parashat Korach – Beware of Hidden Agendas

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, JUN 07, 2021

The rebellion that Korah staged, cobbling together a diverse group whose only common cause was to overthrow Moshe and Aharon, happened at the lowest point of the exodus. The nation,…

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Parashat Shelah – We Need a Fork

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, JUN 02, 2021

A man orders dinner in a restaurant, and soon after his food arrives, he calls the waiter over: “I’d like to speak with the chef,” he says. “May I ask what’s wrong?”…

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Parashat Beha’alotecha – No Reasoning with the Unreasonable

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, MAY 24, 2021

“The rabble-rousers amongst the nation worked themselves into a frenzy and cried ‘who will give us meat to eat!’” One of the very few times Moshe totally lost it and…

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Parashat Nasso – Hatred is Real

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, MAY 20, 2021

“This example will help you in your addition quiz,” the math teacher tells his students: “one apple plus another apple, equals two apples.” The students nod in understanding. Satisfied, the…

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Parashat Bamidbar – Shavuot Manual for Life

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, MAY 10, 2021

Every library catalogs its books according to the subject matter, history, philosophy, law, self-help, and so on. In which section would you think the Torah should be placed? That’s not…

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Parashat Behar & Bechukotai – How to Respond to a Tragedy?

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, MAY 05, 2021

We are all deeply shaken by the horrific tragedy in Meron. People everywhere are crying, beseeching G-d for some measure of comfort and consolation. But how do we respond to…

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Parashat Emor – Yom Yerushalayim

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, APR 26, 2021

The Jewish calendar celebrates and commemorates events that span over 3,300 years. At the end of this month, Iyar, we will be celebrating the newest addition to our event calendar,…

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Parashat Acharie Mot and Kedoshim – A College Drop Out

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, APR 21, 2021

 “He doesn’t have a Ph.D.; he’s a college drop-out. Why would you pick him for the job?” “Because he’s got a ton of experience! His name is Steve Jobs.” Teaching…

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Parashat Tazria-Taharot – We don’t see things the way they are, we see them the way WE are.

Rabbi Haim Shaul | TUE, APR 13, 2021

This week, the Torah describes the types of defilement that a person can be afflicted by that emanate from the person himself. They are described as skin lesions that affect…

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Parashat Shemini – What Will They Say?

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | TUE, APR 06, 2021

The dog came to the heavenly court with a complaint:  “I am completely degraded down on earth!” he cried. “The lion, which tears other animals apart, is honored as the…

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Parshat Tzav – Our Lives: Past and Future

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, MAR 22, 2021

Our celebration of Passover is not just how to remember the past monumental event of the birth of our nation, but also to embrace the newness and opportunity for our…

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Shabbat Va’yikrah – Impossible. It Happened!

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, MAR 18, 2021

“Have you heard about the train?!” was the question of the day. “They say it moves thousands of miles faster than any horse and buggy!” Eager to check it out…

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Parashat Vayak’hel-Pekudei – Living with Passion

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, MAR 08, 2021

“My only talent was being passionately curious.” -Albert Einstein At the end of the book of Shemot, the Torah describes the generosity of the entire nation in their donations towards the…

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Parashat Ki Tissa – Parah – Let’s Make This Journey Count!

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | TUE, MAR 02, 2021

“You came all the way from Brooklyn to Manhattan for a button?!” the businessman asked his former teacher and rabbi. “No, all the way from Poland to Manhattan for a…

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Parashat Tetzaveh – When the month of Adar begins, we increase happiness

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, FEB 22, 2021

This description of Adar being the ‘happy’ month is referenced in Megillat Esther when we witnessed the obliteration of our sworn enemies and the Jewish nation experienced ‘light and happiness’…

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Parashat Teruma-Zachor – Take Sam’s Call

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | TUE, FEB 16, 2021

Josh is looking to open a new law office. He calls Sam, the chairman of the biggest firm in town, and asks him for a tip. “To everyone who calls,…

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Parashat Mishpatim – “No one has ever become poor by giving” Anne Frank

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, FEB 08, 2021

Immediately after the ecstatic, spiritual experience of last week’s Parasha, the Torah immediately brings us down to the ‘real world’ describing in minute detail the social laws that form the…

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Parashat Yitro – Gratitude Essential Jewish Concept

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, FEB 03, 2021

A young boy was playing on the beach when he was suddenly swept away in a violent tidal wave. “Dear G-d, please save my child!” cried his frightened mother. Lo…

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Parashat Beshalah – The Power of Experiential Learning

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, JAN 25, 2021

Joseph, before he died, made the family pledge to bring his body back to their ancestral home when they would eventually return to the land of Israel. In the beginning…

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Parashat Bo – Hypocrisy

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, JAN 20, 2021

“Josh, why don’t you give the gourmet sandwich you bought to that hungry man?” “Dad, you taught us to be genuine. I’ve been looking forward to this sandwich. It would…

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Parashat Va’erah – “We act with kindness because we know what it feels like to be in need of kindness.” Rabbi Sacks

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, JAN 11, 2021

Being in servitude in Egypt is a very large part of continuing Jewish identity. We are told over and over again to remember that we were once slaves in Egypt…

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Parashat Shemot – Family or Friend

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, JAN 07, 2021

“This student is taking away precious time; you’ve got an important person waiting in the lobby,” the secretary emailed the Rabbi. “When I’m speaking with someone, nothing else exists. Right…

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Parashat Va’yehi: Humanity’s Oldest Blessing

Rabbi Haim Shaul | TUE, DEC 29, 2020

The blessings bestowed by Yaakov on Joseph’s sons, Ephraim and Menashe, are the most enduring blessings within all humanity. 3,400 years after they were given, we still reference them in…

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Parashat Vayigash – Show Me The Way

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, DEC 23, 2020

“Mom, what is the purpose of a driver instructor, I’m smart enough to read up the information and drive on my own!” “Sure. You have access to tons of information.…

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Parashat Miketz – Being part of the solution, not part of the problem

Rabbi Haim Shaul | TUE, DEC 15, 2020

One of the most common questions asked about Yosef’s interpretation of Paroah’s dreams is why Yosef inserted at the end of his explanation unsolicited advice to appoint a food czar…

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Parashat Vayeshev – Refuse the Offer

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, DEC 09, 2020

“Sorry we refuse your offer,” the men replied. Surprised, the owner of the farm asked “here I am offering you double pay, plus I am relieving you of the toil and sweat…

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Parashat Vayishlah: Escaping the Prison of Materialism

Rabbi Haim Shaul | TUE, DEC 01, 2020

A basic challenge that faces all humanity is how we relate as individuals to the material, physical world we live in. In a few simple words, the Torah lays out…

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Parashat Vayetze – A Genuine “I’m sorry”

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | TUE, NOV 24, 2020

“The ice looks thick from the outside, but beneath the surface, it’s already melting. Trust me, I’m a seasoned traveler, don’t try crossing those rivers now!” “Ah, you’re just an…

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Parashat Toledot – Living in Denial

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, NOV 16, 2020

When we read the story of the sale of Esav’s birthright we see a sequence of events that seem at first glance to be completely out of order. First, we…

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Parashat Haye Sara – Those Critical Final 10 Seconds

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | MON, NOV 09, 2020

Last week I was in the park with my children when I noticed a professional coach training a group of high school students. Interested, I asked the coach how long it took…

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Parashat Va’yerah – Living WITH the past, not IN the past.

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, NOV 02, 2020

Very often, we find powerful gems of wisdom hidden in the seemingly mundane conversations in the Torah. When Lot is bidden to flee the city of Sodom, before the impending…

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Parashat Lech Lecha – The Creator Needs Us

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, OCT 28, 2020

“Dad, why can’t you tell me the answer? I will score 100 and win the prize!” “Son, I’m gifting you the greatest prize. The feeling of owning something. When you…

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Parashat Noah – A Conflicted Personality

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, OCT 19, 2020

“Noah entered the ark, because of the waters of the flood.” We see that he only reluctantly boarded the ark because he was forced to do so due to the…

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Parashat Bereshit – Let’s Keep the Joy Going

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | THU, OCT 15, 2020

“Rabbi, I’ve been through so much, please teach me how to be happy?” “Go to Rabbi Zusha.” Upon entering the torn-apart shack, he was greeted by a joyous Rabbi Zusha,…

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Shabbat Hol HaMoed Sukkot – Let’s Keep the Inspiration

Rabbi Mendy Weitman | WED, SEP 30, 2020

A priest pops into one of his new converts on a Friday night, and to his great displeasure, sees the table laid out for Shabbat dinner, replete with chicken soup…

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Parashat Ha’azinu – Even Greatness Requires Humility

Rabbi Haim Shaul | MON, SEP 21, 2020

In the opening lines of the song of Ha’azinu, Moshe declares,” The Mighty rock, His deeds are perfect, for all His ways are just.” When we see things in the…

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Rosh HaShanah – Getting High on the High Holidays

Arianna Schudrich | WED, SEP 16, 2020

A group of Russian peasants are sitting in a bar, discussing how much they admire the Czar and what they would offer him to express the extent of their love.…

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Parashat Nisabim-Vayelech “In all my days I have never had to look behind me before saying anything“ (Rabbi Yose, quoted in the Talmud)

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, SEP 08, 2020

Slander or gossip is not necessarily untruthful. Our tradition forbids saying something derogatory about a person even if it is entirely true! One of the best and easiest guidelines to…

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Parashat Ki Tavo – Leaders Bend Down

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, SEP 01, 2020

Leadership is a service, not a position. The mystical books teaches that it is in the absence of oneself – not the indulgence of oneself – that the greatest satisfaction is found.  How does…

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Parashat Ki Tesseh – Tough Love and Parenting

Arianna Schudrich | MON, AUG 24, 2020

The Torah describes in great detail the case of the rebellious son. A young teenager starting out in life indulges in defiant antisocial criminal behavior while exhibiting extreme vulgarity and…

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Shabbat Shoftim – Children Ought to Know

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, AUG 18, 2020

A father and son were heading home one Friday afternoon after purchasing 3 loaves of challah for Shabbat. On their way, a poor man stops them asking for a challah,…

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Parashat Re’eh – “I”: A Blessing or a Stumbling block?

Arianna Schudrich | SUN, AUG 09, 2020

There is an important difference between self-esteem, which is a highly desirable trait, and vanity, which is considered a loathsome attribute. Moshe, in his final days, beseeches the nation, “See…

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Parshat Ekev – ONE word

Arianna Schudrich | WED, AUG 05, 2020

Shock swept through the crowd as they read the huge dedication sign on top of the community center: “In honor of Sarah and Howard Goldberg who were killed during the…

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Shabbat Vaet’hanan – “Rabbi Elazar Ha-kappar said, ” Envy, lust, and the desire for honor drive a person out of the world.”

Arianna Schudrich | MON, JUL 27, 2020

In describing the self-destruction forces of envy and jealousy, our sages in the midrash relate a long dialogue between Moshe, of whom G-d had said that he was exceedingly humble,…

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Parashat Devarim – Does the Truth Hurt

Arianna Schudrich | WED, JUL 22, 2020

At a conference of educators, a renowned teacher was singled out for advice: “Why do your students love hearing criticism from you?” attendees asked, “It’s our greatest challenge. What’s your…

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Parashat Matot-Masei – “Through my own body I see the mind of G-d” (Iyon 19:26)

Arianna Schudrich | MON, JUL 13, 2020

“You were designed for accomplishment, engineered for success, and endowed with the seeds of greatness.” A leading biologist who dedicated her entire life to studying the growth and development of…

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Parashat Pinhas – My Neighbor

Arianna Schudrich | THU, JUL 09, 2020

The owner of a modest grocery store foresees a serious blow to his business when two sizable supermarkets suddenly open shop next door to him.  Determined to succeed, he quickly…

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Parashat Hukat-Balak – Leaders- Held To a Higher Standard

Arianna Schudrich | MON, JUN 29, 2020

Our parashah this week begins a new era in the life of a new generation since nearly a thirty-eight-year gap had passed since the previous event. When the new generation…

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Parashat Korah – Living in Paradise

Arianna Schudrich | WED, JUN 24, 2020

A Jewish mentor once shared this anecdote: What is the difference between Gan Eden (Paradise) and Gehinnom (Hell)? In Hell, they sit at a table of food, but with forks…

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Parashat Shelah – Words of the Wise

Arianna Schudrich | MON, JUN 15, 2020

In the Parasha this week, the greatest rebellion against Moshe’s leadership was gaining strength when Caleb abruptly quieted the people down and spoke his uplifting words of encouragement to enter…

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Parashat Beha’alotcha – I Had A Dream

Arianna Schudrich | THU, JUN 11, 2020

A man passed away, leaving a will for his only son. But the executors of the will were left dumbfounded: the man had specified that his son was only to…

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Parashat Nasso – “Not everything that can be counted, counts”

Arianna Schudrich | WED, JUN 03, 2020

“Not everything that can be counted counts”, Albert Einstein One of the most beautiful blessings ever given is the blessing given to us by G-d every day bestowed during Birkat…

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Shabbat Shavuot – Appreciation

Arianna Schudrich | WED, MAY 27, 2020

As dad opened his birthday gift, he was shocked to discover a parrot trained to sing him praises:  “You’re the best!” “You’re awesome!” “We love you!” An accompanying note read:…

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Parashat Bemidbar: Beyond the Subject Matter

Arianna Schudrich | WED, MAY 20, 2020

As the genealogy of the Israelite tribes is recorded in the Parashah this week, it is puzzling that when the children of Moshe and Aharon, his brother, are listed, it…

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Parashat Behar-Bechukotai – The Power of Learning

Arianna Schudrich | WED, MAY 13, 2020

What’s more powerful than a Nuclear bomb? “Cyber warfare” “Perhaps. But, students, what would be far more powerful than both cyber warfare and a nuclear bomb?” Planting a virus into…

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Parashat Emor – “Fortunate is the generation whose leader is willing to admit having erred.”-Talmud

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, MAY 05, 2020

Being a leader requires walking a fine line. On the one hand, the authority of the position must be maintained, and on the other, a leader must be great enough…

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Parashat Achrei Mot-Kedoshim – Love & Happiness

Arianna Schudrich | WED, APR 29, 2020

It was 1944, and there was a terrible hunger in the city of Samarkand. Mordechai was starving when he approached a fellow Jew’s home late one evening. He was hoping…

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Parashat Tazria – Tahorot – Preaching or Teaching?

Arianna Schudrich | MON, APR 20, 2020

The laws surrounding the purification process of the Metsorah (leper) include the use of the hyssop plant, which is a very low growing plant reaching only a few inches off…

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Parashat Shmini – Our Existence

Arianna Schudrich | MON, APR 13, 2020

“What did you learn in Sunday school today?” Mrs. G asks her son.  “We learned that Jews left Egypt and came to the Red Sea, Moses built a bridge for…

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Shabbat Passover – Teaching What Counts

Arianna Schudrich | MON, APR 06, 2020

During the confinement and quarantine that we have all been subjected to, there has been one strong emphasis that families have been consumed with, educating our children. Mothers and fathers…

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Parashat Tzva – Normalcy. What’s That?

Arianna Schudrich | WED, APR 01, 2020

We are living in historic times. Painful, but historic. Times where normalcy has disappeared. Anything we thought was normal or expected is now replaced with uncertainty and the unknown. A…

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Parashat Vayikra – Good Character in the Face of Uncertainty

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, MAR 24, 2020

During one of the most difficult times of Jewish history, the siege of Jerusalem (70 C.E.) by the Roman army, with over 1.1 million civilians. Many of those civilians traveled…

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Parashat Vaykhel-Pekudei-Hahodesh – Opportunity for Renewal

Arianna Schudrich | THU, MAR 19, 2020

This being the Shabbat that falls on before the first of Nissan, we read an additional portion, the section of Hachodesh (Exodus 12:1-20), which relates G‑d’s words to Moses in Egypt two weeks before the Exodus, instructing…

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Parashat Ki Tissah-Parah – Better Tomorrows

Arianna Schudrich | MON, MAR 09, 2020

We read in the Parasha this week about how the nation succumbed to their feelings of despair at the absence of Moshe, their leader, and created the golden calf.  Rabbi…

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Parashat Tatzaveh – Unearth the Boundless Joy

Arianna Schudrich | THU, MAR 05, 2020

During WWII, a Nazi approached a Jewish concentration camp inmate with a sadistic challenge. “Figure out which one of my eyes is fake, or I kill you,” he proposed. The…

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Parashat Termuah – Humanly Righteous

Arianna Schudrich | MON, FEB 24, 2020

“They will make for Me a sanctuary and I will dwell in their midst.” Our tradition relates that when Moshe was given the commandment to build the sanctuary which would…

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Parashat Mishpatim – Develop a Taste For It

Arianna Schudrich | WED, FEB 19, 2020

Standing on the Brooklyn bridge Josh calls out his last wishes and gets ready to make his final leap… Suddenly a good Samaritan forcefully holds back Josh and deposits him…

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Parashat Yitro – The Growth of a Nation

Arianna Schudrich | WED, FEB 12, 2020

The most significant event in human history, receiving of the Torah at Mount Sinai, forms the structure of the values of modern society.  Perhaps the most noteworthy feature of the…

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Parashat Beshalah – Is Love a Smooth Ride?

Arianna Schudrich | THU, FEB 06, 2020

“How do you keep your marriage intact?” a young man asked his happily-married friend. “It’s simple,” answered the friend, “I take care of all the big issues – the war…

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Parashat Bo – The Gift of Light

Arianna Schudrich | WED, JAN 29, 2020

In describing the ninth plague of darkness, the Torah contrasts the light that lit up the dwellings of the children of Israel and the darkness and gloom that enveloped the…

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Parashat Bo – Aristotle The Human

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, JAN 21, 2020

“You, of all people! How can you do such a thing?!” Aristotle’s students exclaimed in surprise. They were appalled. Their beloved and knowledgeable teacher was caught in the act. “Dear…

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Parashat Shemot – Growth and Potential Make a Nation

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, JAN 14, 2020

Moshe, the great defender of the Jewish people, was initially skeptical about the worthiness of the people to be chosen to receive G-d’s Torah. Years before, he had fled for…

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Parashat Vayechi – I’m Not Alone

Arianna Schudrich | WED, JAN 08, 2020

A young boy was playing on the beach when he was suddenly swept away in a violent tidal wave.  “Dear G-d, please save my child!” cried his frightened mother. Lo…

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Parashat Vayigash: Politics is All About the Economy

Arianna Schudrich | MON, DEC 30, 2019

Yosef became the most powerful economic leader of the land. He was an astute economics genius who sustained the population through a devastating famine and ensured the devotion of the…

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Parashat Miketz – Secret for Success

Arianna Schudrich | MON, DEC 23, 2019

A successful businessman was once invited to give a lecture to a group of students in business school. Towards the end of his lecture one student asked him, “Mr. Businessman,…

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Parashat Vayeshev – Instilling Character

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, DEC 17, 2019

Yosef, a young attractive man all alone in a foreign land, finds himself the focus of the wife of the household in her repeated attempts to seduce him. His first…

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Parashat Vayishlach – We Need Your Flame

Arianna Schudrich | THU, DEC 12, 2019

A student once approached his wise teacher and expressed disappointment over the many areas in his life that weren’t as he wanted or hoped them to be.  Responded his teacher,…

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Parashat Vayeseh – The Envy of the Righteous

Arianna Schudrich | MON, DEC 02, 2019

When Leah conceived and gave birth to her forth child she declared, “This time I will be grateful to G-d.” Leah named her son Yehuda and as a result we…

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Parashat Toldot – We Need A Real Change

Arianna Schudrich | WED, NOV 27, 2019

When I was young and free I dreamed of changing the world. As I grew older and wiser, and realized the world would not change, I shortened my sights somewhat…

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Parashat Haye Sara: The Small Act of Kindness that Changed History

Arianna Schudrich | WED, NOV 20, 2019

“Rivka said, ’Drink sir’, and she quickly let down her pitcher from her hand and gave him to drink together with his camels.” Of all the stories the Torah tells,…

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Parashat Vayera – Excuse me! That’s confidential

Arianna Schudrich | WED, NOV 13, 2019

A show host is grilling his guest on various aspects of his life during a radio interview.  The guest answers question after question on the nitty-gritty of his relationships and…

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Parashat Lekh Lekha: A Solemn Oath

Arianna Schudrich | WED, NOV 06, 2019

The Torah goes to great lengths to describe the details of the lives of our forefathers because of the moral lessons their actions convey. Abraham, a man of peace and…

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Parashat Noach – Why Jews Love the Moon

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, OCT 29, 2019

“Which is more important, the sun or the moon?” a citizen of Chelm asked the town Rabbi. “What a silly question!” exclaimed the Rabbi. “The moon, of course! It shines…

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Parashat Beresheet – Humility listens; Arrogance talks

Arianna Schudrich | WED, OCT 23, 2019

The crowning act of genesis was the creation of man, where G-d declared, “Let us make man.” Our sages comment on the use of the plural “Let us”, even though…

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Parashat Ha’Azinu

Arianna Schudrich | THU, OCT 10, 2019

“The mighty rock, His deeds are perfect, for all His paths are just.” This verse is part of the opening lines of the song of Haazinu in which Moshe describes…

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Parashat Vayeilech – Unleash Your Talents

Arianna Schudrich | WED, OCT 02, 2019

Here is a special anecdote for the High Holidays! “Mom, why do we have such huge eye lases?” the baby camel asked her mother. “They protect us from the mighty…

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Parashat Nitsavim – Rosh Hashanah 5780 – Be the Author in your Book of Life

Arianna Schudrich | THU, SEP 26, 2019

Abraham Lincoln once said, “My great concern is not whether I have failed, but whether I am content with my failure.” Our celebration of the new year is not just…

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Parashat Ki Tavo – Commitment the Key to Relationship

Arianna Schudrich | THU, SEP 19, 2019

My recommendation clearly spells it out, “I’m the best salesman in our company”. Why didn’t I get the job? Because you overlooked the end of the recommendation; “The best salesman,…

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Parashat Ki Teseh – Is It Love or Lust?

Arianna Schudrich | THU, SEP 12, 2019

There are several pairings of emotional states that are often confused for one another and if misidentified can lead to conflicting emotions. For example, guilt, which reflects a sense of…

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Parashat Shoftim – Who Cares?

Arianna Schudrich | WED, SEP 04, 2019

The dog came to the heavenly court with a complaint: “I am completely degraded down on earth!” he cried. “The lion, which tears other animals apart, is honored as king…

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Parashat Re’eh – Living Life in Moderation

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, AUG 27, 2019

The marshmallow test is one of the most famous pieces of social-science research: Put a marshmallow in front of a child, tell her that she can have a second one…

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Parashat Eikev – I own it

Arianna Schudrich | WED, AUG 21, 2019

“Dad, why can’t you tell me the answer? I will score 100 and win the prize!” “Son, I’m gifting you the greatest price, ‘The feeling of owning something.’ When you…

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Parashat Va’et’hanan – A Little Bit of Light Pushes Away a lot of Darkness.

Arianna Schudrich | MON, AUG 12, 2019

We read this week about Moshe’s retelling of revelation, the receiving of the Torah on Mount Sinai, that occurred forty years prior. Over the last three millennia, the Ten Commandments…

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Parashat Debarim – Jewish Survival

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, AUG 06, 2019

The celebrated Israeli military leader and politician, Moshe Dayan, was once stopped by a police officer for a speeding violation.  “You – Dayan?”  – asked the officer in surprise when…

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Parashat Matot-Mas’ei – The Power of Speech

Arianna Schudrich | WED, JUL 31, 2019

“A person shall not violate his word, but fulfill everything that emerges from his mouth.” Words matter! Our Torah puts great emphasis on words and how we express ourselves, as…

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Parashat Pinehas – Exclusiveness

Arianna Schudrich | FRI, JUL 26, 2019

I once visited a friend of mine who is a diamond dealer. As he guided me through his showcase, he pointed out one particular diamond: “That one is literally priceless,”…

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Parashat Balak – Privacy, Our Sacred Space

Arianna Schudrich | THU, JUL 18, 2019

King Solomon wisely said, “Let others praise you and not your own mouth”. There is no more beautiful description of the Jewish nation than the statement of our sworn enemy…

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Parashat Hukat – Jewish Nukes

Arianna Schudrich | THU, JUL 11, 2019

They say that WWII fighter pilots, entrusted with the most destructive weaponry of all time, weren’t actually aware of the potential damage that would be caused by the bombs they…

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Parashat Korah – An Opportunity for Divine Leniency

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, JUL 02, 2019

Korah, the first cousin of Moshe and Aharon, orchestrates a web of rebellion consisting of an amalgam of disparate groups with their own conflicting self interests battling to bring down…

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Are we outdated?

Arianna Schudrich | FRI, JUN 28, 2019

The large clock was the talk of the town: it was flawlessly accurate and kept everyone on schedule. The townspeople had only one problem, the clock was simply too high up. Why…

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Sacrifices in our Mini Temple

Arianna Schudrich | WED, APR 10, 2019

The city was in an uproar: a well-known veteran beggar had won the million-dollar lottery!  Reporters scrambled to gain information on this unique win, and the same question was on…

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Parashat Tazria – Measure for Measure

Arianna Schudrich | WED, APR 03, 2019

This weeks Parasha details the physical manifestation of a spiritual malaise, the primary cause of which is due to slander and the spreading of gossip and character assassination, something so…

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Parashat Shemini – Taking Responsibility is the price of greatness

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, MAR 26, 2019

The Torah is not merely a record of historical events but a guide book to teach humanity ethical lessons and codes of conduct. Therefore, the incidents that are recorded in…

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If you can keep your head when all about you are losing theirs -Rudyard Kipling

Arianna Schudrich | MON, MAR 18, 2019

Many of the Korbanot (sacrifices) that are brought in the Temple are for misconduct and imperfect decisions that we often make in our everyday lives. Our Sages say, “A person…

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Parashat Vayikra – If you’re not challenged you’re not going to change

Arianna Schudrich | MON, MAR 11, 2019

The book of Vayikra is the consolidation of the birth of our nation into an ongoing covenant, completing and affirming the Sinai experience. Most fittingly, the book begins with G-d…

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Dog of the Hunter

Arianna Schudrich | MON, MAR 04, 2019

In times gone by, when men would hunt for bear in the wild, they would first send a dog as “bait.” The dog’s presence would set off a chase with…

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Parashat Pikudei – Transparency Builds Trust

Arianna Schudrich | MON, MAR 04, 2019

The Torah devotes an entire section to record Moshe’s long detailed account of all the monies and gifts that were received and spent during the construction of the Tabernacle. Even…

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Parashat Vayak’hel – Finding Meaning in the Mundane

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, FEB 26, 2019

The copper washbasin that was placed at the entrance to the tent of meeting, from which the priests would wash, was fashioned from the mirrors of the women.   Our…

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Is she priceless?

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, FEB 26, 2019

At a conference of educators, a renowned teacher was singled out for advice: “Why do your students love hearing criticism from you?” attendees asked, “It’s our greatest challenge – what’s…

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Parashat Ki Tissa – Crisis is a Call to Action

Arianna Schudrich | WED, FEB 20, 2019

The greatest qualities of leadership are often revealed during severe crises, as Sir Winston Churchill famously said, “Character is manifested in the great moments.” During the episode of the golden…

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Arianna Schudrich | FRI, FEB 15, 2019

A businessman is riding the train when an individual dressed in what seemed like traditional Chassidic garb sits down next to him. Observing his seatmate, the businessman blurts out: “Sir,…

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Parashat Tesaveh – The Spiritual Life

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, FEB 12, 2019

The Torah portions that we are presently reading describes in great detail the building of the sanctuary and the beautiful and ornate holy vessels that make up the Tabernacle. When…

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Stop Learning

Arianna Schudrich | MON, FEB 04, 2019

A learned individual was giving a sermon in the town synagogue. Throughout his talk, as he repeatedly quoted specific pages from the Talmud from where he had derived he content,…

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Parashat Terumah – Nation Building

Arianna Schudrich | MON, FEB 04, 2019

Parashat Terumah (gifts), which details the building of the sanctuary and the donations which were to be accepted from the nation, is placed immediately after the fiscal and social laws…

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Yes, I’m Stiff Necked

Arianna Schudrich | MON, JAN 28, 2019

Victor Frankl was among the millions of Jews who suffered under the merciless hand of the Nazis in war-torn Europe. In relating his personal experience in the death camps, Frankl…

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Parashat Mishpatim – The First Duty of Society is Justice – Alexander Hamilton

Arianna Schudrich | MON, JAN 28, 2019

The very first Parasha, after the giving of the Torah described in last week’s portion, deals primarily with financial and social laws which make up the structure of a just…

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What Does She Want?

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, JAN 22, 2019

A professional drummer was considering the perfect 25th anniversary gift for his wife. He finally settles on something really special, and as he presents the beautifully wrapped box, says “…

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Parashat Yitro – “With humility comes knowledge” (Proverbs 11:2)

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, JAN 22, 2019

“With humility comes knowledge” (Proverbs 11:2). “Even if the entire world considers you a pious person, nevertheless you should not consider yourself as such” (Talmud). The giving of the Ten…

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Do you appreciate Art?

Arianna Schudrich | THU, JAN 17, 2019

Two young boys had earned themselves a name in town for being sticky-fingered; if ever something went missing, they were always the first suspects. One morning, the local rabbi approached…

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Parashat Beshalah – The Challenge Within

Arianna Schudrich | WED, JAN 16, 2019

“They came to Marah, the place of encampment, and could not drink of the waters for they were bitter.” The great sage, Rabbi Israel, best known as the Baal Shem…

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I Made a Mistake

Arianna Schudrich | THU, JAN 10, 2019

When the world was created, an interesting court case ensued, wherein Mistake took Wisdom to court before God. “I am purposeless in this universe,” claimed Mistake. “By giving the human…

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Parashat Bo – From Slavery to Freedom

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, JAN 08, 2019

“The difference between technology and slavery is that slaves are fully aware that they are not free” N. Taleb In this week’s Torah portion we are given the very first…

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Parashat Va’era – You’re never forgotten “Home Alone”

Arianna Schudrich | WED, JAN 02, 2019

The beginning formation of the Jewish nation and our relationship with the Creator revolves around the ten plagues that were brought against Egypt. These were open revealed miracles for all…

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Who is in Control?

Arianna Schudrich | WED, JAN 02, 2019

A wise teacher was once discussing with his students the concept of influencing one’s behavior. “The human being is capable of controlling his emotions and actions,” he explained, ” it…

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Parashat Shemot – Kindness: The Essence of Greatness

Arianna Schudrich | WED, DEC 26, 2018

“Moses grew up and went out to his people and saw their suffering.”  With this brief description, the Torah introduces us to the greatest personality of our entire history, “Moses…

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Secret to Success

Arianna Schudrich | WED, DEC 26, 2018

A successful businessman was one invited to give a lecture to a group of students in a business school. Towards the end of his lecture one student asked him, “Mr.…

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The American Idol

Arianna Schudrich | WED, DEC 19, 2018

A businessman once commented to his friend, the educator: “How can you be so sure of your ideas when there is such a big world out there?” Responded the educator:…

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Parashat Vayehi – Teach a Child According to His Way (Proverbs 22:6)

Arianna Schudrich | WED, DEC 19, 2018

“Jacob blessed his sons each one according to his specific traits.” Our sages explain this to mean that Jacob gave each son the blessing suitable and distinct for him, although…

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Parashat Vayigash – Make Adjustments Not Excuses

Arianna Schudrich | WED, DEC 12, 2018

Joseph’s life and attitude was very unique in that we find that in every situation he found himself, he achieved excellence. Whether as a son, servant, prisoner, viceroy, provider or…

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Chanukah Message

Arianna Schudrich | WED, DEC 12, 2018

A student once approached his wise teacher and expressed disappointment over the many areas in his life that weren’t as he wanted or hoped them to be. Responded his teacher,…

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It’s All About the Messenger

Arianna Schudrich | THU, DEC 06, 2018

At a conference of educators, a renowned teacher was singled out for advice: “Why do your students love hearing criticism from you?” attendees asked, “It’s our greatest challenge – what’s…

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Parashat Mi’kes – When opportunity knocks…

Arianna Schudrich | THU, DEC 06, 2018

“And Pharaoh awoke, he went back to sleep and dreamt a second time”(41:4).  One of the most famous questions asked in this week’s Parasha is why did Joseph volunteer unsolicited…

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Parashat Vayesheb – Self Confidence-Recipe for Success

Arianna Schudrich | FRI, NOV 30, 2018

In our Parasha this week the Torah relates that Joseph asked the servants of Pharaoh who were in the prison with him “Why do your faces appear so dejected today?”…

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Jewish Continuity

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, NOV 20, 2018

A well-known Jewish professor, NY Times bestselling author, and communal activist on an international level was terribly broken when he realized that his son had no interest in any of…

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Parashat Vayishlah – Life’s Challenges: A Call to Action Not Despair

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, NOV 20, 2018

When Yaakob heard that Esau was marching toward him with an army of 400 men, he was very afraid. Our Sages in the Midrash compare Yaakob’s fear of confrontation with…

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Parashat Vayeseh – Living Free

Arianna Schudrich | THU, NOV 15, 2018

Yaakob’s only material request is bread to eat and clothing to wear. The Talmud gives worldly advice in the statement, “one who eats fatty meat may need to hide in…

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I’m not in the mood

Arianna Schudrich | THU, NOV 15, 2018

A police academy conference was called to discuss the long-term implications of police officers shooting criminals. During the conference, an anonymous police officer called in to share his personal experience,…

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Parashat Toledot – Taking Good to Great

Arianna Schudrich | TUE, NOV 06, 2018

“When the boys grew up, Esau became a skillful hunter, a man of the outdoors, but Jacob was a mild man who stayed in camp”. We see that, from the…

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Pittsburgh and #ShowUpForShabbat

Arianna Schudrich | THU, NOV 01, 2018

It is unfortunate that we, as a people, have a long-standing know-how on dealing with tragedy and hatred. We do not succumb or hide. Instead, we rise even stronger. The…

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