Kee Tavo 5765-2005

"Contemporary Implications of an Ancient Ritual" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In our analysis of parashat Kee Tavo for 2003/5763, we reviewed the message of the extraordinary confession…

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Behar-Bechukotai 5766-2006

"The Economics of Torah" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald The very last chapter of the book of Leviticus chapter 27, which concludes this week's double parashiot Behar-Bechukotai, focuses on…

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Kee Tavo 5777-2017

“The Choice Parts to G-d” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Parashat Kee Tavo is best known for the second תּוֹכֵחָה , Tochacha, G-d’s second reproof of the People of Israel. The first is…

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Take A Sabbatical

It is interesting that the two most common professions which offer sabbatical leaves are academia and clergy. These two professions are fields in which practitioners devote a great deal…

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Whose First Fruits

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

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Re’eh 5780-2020

Re'eh 5780-2020 “Changing and Updating Jewish Law” (updated and revised from parashat Re’eh 5762-2002) by, Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Re’eh, we encounter a…

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Kee Tavo 5769-2009

"Stretch Those Face Muscles!" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Kee Tavo, we find the fascinating portion regarding the giving of Bikurim, the season's first…

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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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Kee Tavo 5766-2006

"Respect for the Person and the Office" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In the opening chapter of this week's parasha, parashat Kee Tavo, we read about the ritual of Bikurim -- the gift of…

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B’shalach 5763-2003

"Bringing G-d Home" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat B'shalach, contains many historic and dramatic moments. The narrative describes the departure of the…

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The Shmittah Food Co-Op

In the land of Israel today,  they are well into the year of Shmittah (the sabbatical seventh year during which farmers let the land lay fallow). Since last Rosh Hashana, many…

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What is Shmittah?

We have now completed the fall holidays and have fully entered the new year, 5775. Beyond the quaint palindrome nature of its numbers, this new year is distinct from the past few years in…

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Whose First Fruits?

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

Read More

Take A Sabbatical

It is interesting that the two most common professions which offer sabbatical leaves are academia and clergy. These two professions are fields in which practitioners devote a great deal…

Read More

Whose First Fruits

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

Read More

Whose First Fruits

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

Read More

Whose First Fruits

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

Read More

Whose First Fruits

When the Oral Law was first codified, most Jews lived in agrarian settings. Today, being less familiar with agrarian culture, some people find it difficult to relate to some of the…

Read More

Tetzaveh 5764-2004

"Keeping the Priests Humble" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this coming week's parasha, parashat Tetzaveh, we read in rather minute detail, about the garments that were worn by the…

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Behar 5776-2016

“Bernie Sanders Meets Parashat Behar" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Behar, introduces many of the Torah’s revolutionary economic ideas (see Behar 5765-2005).…

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Kee Tavo 5778-2018

“A Wandering Aramean?” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Kee Tavo, Moses, facing the final days of his life, informs the people what to expect will happen once…

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Laws and Customs of Shavuot

ShavuotLaws and Customs Table of Contents Festival Laws The Book of Ruth Customs Shavuot is a low-key, pensive holiday,…

Shelach 5765-2005

"Bread Alone" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald As the name of the parasha, "Shelach lecha"--send for yourself, indicates, this week's parasha focuses on the 12 scouts that were sent by the…

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Be Thankful

Just as Sukkot is known as Chag Ha’Asif, the Festival of the Ingathering, when farmers acknowledge their bounty, we should be thankful and acknowledge, especially during the COVID-19…

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A Jewish Income Tax?

On February 3, 1913, the Sixteenth Amendment to the U.S. Constitution was ratified. “The Congress shall have power to lay and collect taxes on incomes, from whatever source derived,…

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Jews in Mississippi

In 1804, a year after the “Louisiana Purchase” was concluded, the United States government created the “Mississippi Territory.” On December 10, 1817, statehood was granted to Mississippi.…

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Kee Tavo 5763-2003

"Watch out for Laban, he's more dangerous than Pharaoh!" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Parashat Kee Tavo is an "ominous" parasha. It is one of two Torah portions that features the…

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Bo 5763-2003

"The Subtle Secrets of the 10 Plagues" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat Bo, describes the last three of the ten plagues. While the listing of the Ten…

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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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Behar 5765-2005

"The Torah's Revolutionary Economic System" by Rabbi Ephraim Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat Behar is an extraordinarily challenging and revolutionary parasha. The Torah, in…

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