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Restoring Faith In Ourselves

04/12/2019 09:21:05 AM


The visuals we surround ourselves with are very powerful. A lot of creative talent and money is spent on visual branding.

The same goes with our centers of worship and spiritual development. What we see influences how we feel and behave....Read more...

The Blessings Of Isolation

04/05/2019 12:40:59 PM


I had the good fortune to spend a few days in Israel last weekend, for the celebration of a bar-mitzvah. The host family arranged a chock-filled itinerary for all the guests who attended from all over the world. Each day was carefully planned with trips, activities and celebrations....Read more...

Holy Cleaning

03/22/2019 12:48:30 PM


Many people love to help plan the party. Everyone loves to attend the party. But how many people stay to help clean up after the party?

This week’s Torah portion Tzav teaches us about how to value holy service.

There were many daily tasks performed by the kohanim in the Temple. Lighting the menorah,...Read more...

Ain't No Chance

03/15/2019 02:59:51 PM


One of the biggest dangers in life is to believe that anything could happen by chance.

Saying that everything happens for a reason is not a new-age feel-good neo-spiritual made-up concept. Yes, based upon some people’s interpretation it might just appear to be. But in truth, it is the truth.

As...

An Ode To Cholent

03/01/2019 12:35:38 PM


Cholent means different things to different people.

But did you know, that cholent is the gatekeeper protecting the entire Jewish tradition?! I know, it sounds exaggerated, so let me explain:

For those...

When Will You Learn?

02/22/2019 10:19:09 AM


A few days ago I was teaching a weekly class, and somehow we got off topic and began discussing organ donation. A few students were surprised by my remarks. "What? Judaism allows organ donation? I always thought it wasn't allowed."

From experience, teaching Judaism's favorable view on...

We Are Not So Different, You & I

02/15/2019 11:15:38 AM


Does Judaism discriminate against people with disabilities?

Of course, the answer is no. The Torah repeatedly cautions about loving the stranger, supporting the orphan, respecting the deaf and protecting the blind.

But one law seems off.

This week’s Torah portion Tetzaveh introduces us to...

Remember When?

02/01/2019 12:43:33 PM


Why were the Jews enslaved and tortured for many generations to Pharaoh and the Egyptians?

A simple answer is that Pharaoh was a wicked and ruthless king of the superpower Egyptian nation of the time. Thus, since he could, he did. Perhaps he needed cheap labor; or was...Read more...

If Someone Asks For Help, Say No

01/25/2019 09:37:21 AM


What can we learn from the account between Moshe Rabbeinu and his father in law Yitro?

Yitro wakes up early one morning and sees Moshe sitting in his judicial chair, and there's a long line of people waiting to consult with the master of...Read more...

Reasonable Expectations

12/14/2018 02:04:31 PM


Whether or not you are open to seeing someone or something in a positive light makes all the difference.

I was recently counseling someone through a bitter dispute he was having with a client.  Understandably, he had built up a very negative image of the client.

In one of our sessions, he brought...

Quiet Influence

12/07/2018 12:23:48 PM


Who are the biggest influencers in your life? How do you influence others?

The chanukah lights contain a profound answer to these questions.

Our rituals and customs each influence us in different ways. When we blow the shofar, or shake the lulav, or pray, or ear matza, or study Torah, or give...Read more...

Thanks For The Sting, Honey

11/30/2018 09:58:40 AM


What will you be thankful for this Chanukah?

In the famous chanukah prayer, "V'al hanissim", there are some versions which include something very odd:

"We thank G-d for the miracles, for the salvation, for the...Read more...

But I Have To...

11/23/2018 12:22:43 PM


Who is in control of your life – you or someone/something else?

Are you a Yaakov or a Yisrael?

This week’s Torah portion Vayishlach recounts when Yaakov’s name was changed to...Read more...

Before It's Too late...

11/16/2018 12:33:39 PM


It's difficult to fully appreciate something whilst we have it. It's much easier to look back and appreciate it. But by that time, it's too late.

This is why many people feel that their lives are filled with missed and undervalued opportunities.

When our children grow up we regret not fully enjoying them in their youth.


Reflections On Tragedy And Hope

11/09/2018 12:12:10 PM


Some quickly written thoughts that are swirling in my mind as we near the end of this tumultuous week:

Another shooting. 12 dead in California.

A...

Trust One Who Failed A Driving Test

11/09/2018 12:10:05 PM


When I made a silly mistake on my first drivers test, I began to sweat and become very anxious that I would fail. My examiner was a sweetheart and allowed me to pass.

At the time I considered myself very lucky. Ever since, I've been proud of my badge of honor having passed on my first try.

However,...

You're Not Going To Heaven!

10/19/2018 12:24:31 PM


On a flight this week I was surrounded by eighteen tall, broad and handsome soldiers of the US Coast Guard.

When I got seated, I asked the one next to me where they were going. “To New York. “Why?” “On a...Read more...

The Package Called 'Me'

10/12/2018 11:12:47 AM


Have you ever wanted to press a reset button on your life?

You may be 20, 30, 50 years old, and thought to yourself, "this is not how I imagined my life would turn out."

If you had...

There's No Friday On The Jewish Calendar

10/05/2018 02:16:09 PM


Semper  Paratus.

It's the official motto of many organizations, including the US Coast Guard.

It's a Latin phrase, meaning 'Always Ready.'

It came to mind after hearing a comment made to me the other day.

At the conclusion of the Jewish month of Tishrei, the month filled with...Read more...

Feeling Overwhelmed? Try This...

09/21/2018 01:45:38 PM


The challenge each of us face now is:

How to channel all the inspiration and energy built up over the High Holy Days into our daily practical lives throughout the coming year?

I recently read an amazing study about how to...

The Perfect Storm

09/14/2018 12:40:11 PM


The phrase ‘The Perfect Storm’ comes from the non-fiction book with this title, authored by Sabastian Junger in 1997. Three years later the book was turned into a film with the same name.

The phrase connotes a confluence of bad circumstances that combine to form a monumental disaster. In the...Read more...

Never Fear Sin

08/17/2018 12:44:33 PM


Before the Jewish army would go out to war, a priest was appointed to help lead the army -  to accompany, guide and inspire the soldiers.

One of his prep speeches went like this: "Hear, O Israel … Let your hearts not be faint … for the Lord,...Read more...

Do You See Or Hear?

08/03/2018 01:14:14 PM


We encounter the world around us through all our different senses.

We taste, touch, smell, listen and see.

But we connect with the most important things in our lives primarily through our ears and eyes. Think about your relationships, your education, your job, your worldview, and you’ll notice how what you see and what you hear are...Read more...

The Happiness Mix

07/20/2018 11:16:09 AM


Emotions are complicated.

When we pause to think about what and how we're feeling, we can get confused. Am I feeling like this or like that? Or a little bit of both?

Just try answering Facebook's question...

A New World Order

07/13/2018 10:56:24 AM


This week it was yet again confirmed that which we know to be true deep in our gut.

That when the entire world cooperates together in unison to achieve a goal, no matter how audacious it may be, it will always succeed.

After a long and scary 18-day ordeal, 12 boys and their teacher were...Read more...

Whose Genes Will You Blame?

07/06/2018 12:21:00 PM


Why are we so suspicious of others?

Often, when we see someone do something good, we suspect that their intentions are flawed. Do they really mean it? Who are they trying to impress? What are they trying to prove? What do they expect in return? What are they covering up? What is their real agenda?

Similarly, when someone does something which...

Be A Little Moses!

06/15/2018 12:12:56 PM


How should a Jewish leader react when their generation has been overcome by sin and waywardness?

Historically there have been three different kinds of approaches:

Noach paradigm: When G-d planned to destroy all of humanity due to their sinful behavior, he instructed Noach to build an ark to save the good people. Noach worked tirelessly to build the ark and to ensure that he and his family will be saved. But Noach didn’t...Read more...

When G-d Took A Risk

06/08/2018 11:00:27 AM


Some episodes are true turning points in history.

This week's Torah portion records one of them. The Jews were preparing to soon enter Israel. They would be led into Israel by Moses, and begin to build and settle their land under his guidance. One can just imagine how glorious that might have...Read more...

The Female Qualitative Edge

03/09/2018 01:30:45 PM


For decades the media and other influential voices of society have been campaigning against women. They’ve done so very cleverly, dressing up their campaign by claiming they represent women, and wish to ‘empower’ them and make them be ‘just like everyone else’.

But the root of their campaign...

Let's Create Life!

02/22/2018 11:08:32 AM


We are still in a state of pain and disbelief about the horrific school shootings in Parkland FL last week, which claimed the lives of 17 people, and injured many others.

Fingers of blame are being pointed in many directions – the NRA, the school, the FBI, our politicians, and many other systems.

No...

Sat, April 20 2019 15 Nisan 5779