My Journey to the Tombs of the Tzadikim in the Galilee (2017) – part 1, about the North

Kinneret view near Parod, the Galilee, Israel

Every year, around La"g Baomer, our Kolel of Torah studies sets out to the North to the Galilee to the Tombs of the Righteous, for a lovely (and hopefully useful) excursion. The word for "north" in Hebrew is צפון, Tzafon. It is derived from the verb צפן, Tzafan, which means to hide, most usually a … Continue reading My Journey to the Tombs of the Tzadikim in the Galilee (2017) – part 1, about the North

Pirkey Avot chap. 3 Mishnah 1, an Insight

Now is the time for a bit of Pirkey Avot! עֲקַבְיָא בֶּן מַהֲלַלְאֵל אוֹמֵר: הִסְתַּכֵּל בִּשְׁלֹשָׁה דְּבָרִים וְאֵין אַתָּה בָּא לִידֵי עֲבֵרָה. דַּע, מֵאַיִן בָּאתָ וּלְאָן אַתָּה הוֹלֵךְ וְלִפְנֵי מִי אַתָּה עָתִיד לִתֵּן דִּין וְחֶשְׁבּוֹן. מֵאַיִן בָּאתָ - מִטִּפָּה סְרוּחָה, וּלְאָן אַתָּה הוֹלֵךְ - לִמְקוֹם עָפָר רִמָּה וְתוֹלֵעָה, וְלִפְנֵי מִי אַתָּה עָתִיד לִתֵּן דִּין וְחֶשְׁבּוֹן … Continue reading Pirkey Avot chap. 3 Mishnah 1, an Insight

To be AND not to be – That is the Answer

The definition of holiness, sanctity, in Loshon Hakodesh, in Hebrew, is to be "set apart", be nivdal. When you sanctify something, you take it away from all other things and give it special  importance. It becomes  absolute, and all else - only relative. As Rashi says in our Parasha: בכל מקום שאתה מוצא פרישות גדר ערוה … Continue reading To be AND not to be – That is the Answer

The Alphabetical Secret of א”ת ב”ש and Independence Day

This evening it's Yom Ha-Atzmaut, Israel's Independence Day (69) and we all know that for some religious Jews that's not a happy, let alone, holy day. However I was always fascinated by those Jews who regard this day as a perfectly religious Moed (holiday). It's certainly not written anywhere in the Bible, nor in the … Continue reading The Alphabetical Secret of א”ת ב”ש and Independence Day

Tzara-at (Byblical Leprosy) in Correction of the Primordial Sin

The Rambam in his More Nevuchim (Guide to the Perplexed) almost at the start of the book asks a question about the sin in the Garden of Eden: נמצא חוטא נשכר! It seems that the sinner has gained from his sin! Adam and Eve were placed in a Garden where there was a Tree of … Continue reading Tzara-at (Byblical Leprosy) in Correction of the Primordial Sin