The Thirteen Principles

The United States Supreme Court decides whether laws conform or do not conform to the U.S. Constitution. Similarly, the ancient sages decided and interpreted halacha, Jewish law, based on…

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Noah 5766-2005

"The Seven Commandments Given to the Descendants of Noah" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Noah, G-d blesses Noah and his children after the Flood, and graces…

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Va’etchanan 5765-2005

"The Jewish Attitude Toward Intermarriage" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week's parasha, parashat Va'etchanan, is chock-full of extraordinary themes, including the texts of the Ten…

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Va’etchanan 5771-2011

"The Ten Commandments: The Differences" By Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Va’etchanan, Moses revisits the scriptural verses known as the "Decalogue" or the Ten…

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Believe Completely

Rabbi Moses ben Maimon (Maimonides, Rambam) was a 12th century Jewish philosopher, codifier, commentator and physician. He is best known for his codification of Jewish law (Mishneh…

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Speech of Jacob Henry

Though I will not conceal the surprise I felt, that the gentleman should have thought proper yesterday to have moved my expulsion from this house, on the alleged grounds that I…

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Vayishlach 5766-2005

"When a Jew Comes to the City" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Vayishlach, Jacob sends a most impressive tribute consisting of goats, ewes, rams, camels and…

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B’ha’alot’cha 5761-2001

"The Torah's Attitude Towards Converts" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's Torah portion, parashat Beha'alotecha, continues the narrative of the Jew's wanderings in the…

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A Treat For World Philosophy Day

Philosophy is defined by dictionary.com as "the rational investigation of the truths and principles of being, knowledge or conduct." Judaism, being a religion, is a system of living…

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Matot-Masei 5778-2018

“Judaism and Warfare” In parashat Matot, the first of this week’s double parashiyot, Matot-Masei, we read of the great battle that Israel waged to avenge the Midianite nation for leading…

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Unlucky 13?

Our culture has planted in our minds that 13 is a particularly unlucky number (Triskaidekaphobia = fear of 13). “Friday the 13th” (Paraskevisekatriaphobia = fear of Friday the 13th) is a…

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Who Was Rabbi Akiva?

Akiva ben Yosef was once an ignorant and illiterate shepherd. So poor and downtrodden a figure was Akiva that his extremely wealthy father-in-law disinherited Akiva’s wife, Rachel, for…

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Shoftim 5765-2005

"The Extent of Rabbinic Authority" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Shoftim, 41 new Torah laws--14 positive and 27 negative mitzvot--are introduced.…

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Pekudei 5774-2014

“Moses Retires from Center Stage” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Pekudei, the moment for which the People of Israel have long been waiting, has finally…

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B’ha’a’lot’cha 5774-2014

“The Difference Between Moses and the Other Prophets” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Parashat B’ha’a’lot’cha, reaches its exciting crescendo in Numbers 12, with the story of Miriam and…

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Kedoshim 5768-2008

"Establishing a Truly Ethical Society: Honesty in Business" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Parashat Kedoshim is renowned for its many revolutionary ethical pronouncements. It is surely…

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Mimouna

Jews rejoice on Passover to celebrate their redemption from slavery in Egypt. Because of Passover’s connection to redemption, there is much hope that the final redemption will soon be at…

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Mimouna

Jews rejoice on Passover to celebrate their redemption from slavery in Egypt. Because of Passover’s connection to redemption, there is much hope that the final redemption will soon be at…

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Mimouna

Jews rejoice on Passover to celebrate their redemption from slavery in Egypt. Because of Passover’s connection to redemption, there is much hope that the final redemption will soon be at…

Read More

Mimouna

Jews rejoice on Passover to celebrate their redemption from slavery in Egypt. Because of Passover’s connection to redemption, there is much hope that the final redemption will soon be at…

Read More

Mimouna

Jews rejoice on Passover to celebrate their redemption from slavery in Egypt. Because of Passover’s connection to redemption, there is much hope that the final redemption will soon be at…

Read More

Mimouna

Jews rejoice on Passover to celebrate their redemption from slavery in Egypt. Because of Passover’s connection to redemption, there is much hope that the final redemption will soon be at…

Read More

Unlucky 13?

Our culture has planted in our minds that 13 is a particularly unlucky number (Triskaidekaphobia = fear of 13). “Friday the 13th” (Paraskevisekatriaphobia = fear of Friday the 13th) is a…

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Re’eh 5762-2002

"Changing and Updating Jewish Law" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Re'eh, we encounter a fascinating law known in rabbinic literature as Shmitat…

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Va’etchanan 5766-2006

"A Small Verse that Started a Mighty Revolution" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Some weekly Torah portions are considered particularly significant by virtue of the large number of mitzvot…

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Bo 5764-2004

"The More Things Change..." by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Bo, the enslavement of the Jewish people comes to a dramatic conclusion with the tenth…

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Behar 5763-2003

"Understanding Hebrew and Canaanite Servitude" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Behar, we learn of the laws of the Eved Ivri and the Eved K'na'ani,…

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B’ha’alot’cha 5760-2000

"Giving Our Disciples A Firm Grounding" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Beha'alotecha, G-d speaks to Moshe and says to him (Numbers 8:2): "Daber el…

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Vayeira 5772-2011

“Were Lot’s Daughters Moral or Immoral?” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Vayeira, Abraham famously bargains with G-d in order to save the cities of Sodom and…

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Devarim 5772-2012

"The Al-mighty’s Relationship with the Nations of the World" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald As we have previously noted on several occasions (Devarim 5765-2005), the book of Devarim…

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