Inside or Outside?

Seder night is an event pregnant with tradition and ritual. As the Hagaddah instructs, “we are obligated to see ourselves as if we ourselves were slaves in Egypt.” So much of the Seder…

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Outside Rest

If the weather is pleasant where you live, spend part of Shabbat day outside enjoying the miracles of God's natural world.

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Purim Story 2.0: the First Jewish Defense Outside of Israel

The Scriptural story how Queen Esther saved the Jews of the Persian Empire is one of the greatest and most exciting stories ever told. Jews worldwide celebrate the festival of Purim…

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Opulent on the Outside Only

Dressed in fancy clothes with silver buttons and a hat of golden fur, Rabbi Israel Friedman (1797-1850) of Rhuzin was a unique figure among the chassidic leaders. He surrounded himself…

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Kee Tavo 5767-2007

"Can the Promise of G-d Keep the People Holy?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Parashat Kee Tavo is one of the two parashiot in the Torah that features the Tochacha, the terrifying…

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Pinchas 5765-2005

"Whatever Became of the Sons of Korach?" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week's parasha, parashat Pinchas, opens with the conclusion of the well-known act of zealotry perpetrated by…

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Naso 5769-2009

"An Extreme Lifestyle" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Naso, we encounter two particularly challenging themes. We read of the Sotah, a woman suspected of…

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Bereshith 5772-2011

“The Fall of Man” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Starting with this week’s parasha, parashat Bereshith, synagogues around the globe begin the annual cycle of reading the Torah, the Five…

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Tetzaveh 5765-2005

"A Flame in Every Jewish Heart" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat Tetzaveh, focuses primarily on the design and manufacture of the priestly vestments. The…

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Behar-Bechukotai, Yom Yerushalayim 5772-2012

"Living Outside the Land of Israel" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In parashat Behar, the first of this week’s double parashiot, Behar-Bechukotai, we learn of the special relationship that…

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Vayeira 5763-2002

"Sodom: The Home of Institutionalized Evil" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Have you ever wondered what it would be like to live in Sodom? There are, after all, many places in the world,…

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Shelach 5776-2016

“A Name Change Becomes a Game Changer" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Shelach, we read the well-known story of the scouts who are sent into the Land of…

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Vayeira 5767-2006

"Choosing The Right Neighbors" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Vayeira, we learn that after 23 years of residing in the area of Elonei Mamrei near Hebron…

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The First Pitch

Parashat Noach begins by describing the famous teivah, or ark, that God instructed Noah to build. Since the wooden craft would be challenged by the rainstorm and the elements, God…

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Terumah 5770-2010

"Earning a Meaningful Living" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald Parashat Terumah is the first of the five concluding parashiot of the book of Exodus that describe the building of the…

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The First Pitch

Parashat Noah begins by describing the famous teivah, or ark, that God instructed Noah to build. Since the wooden craft would be challenged by the rainstorm and the elements, God…

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Emor 5772-2012

"Lessons from a Priest’s Wanton Daughter" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Emor, highlights the special status of the Kohanim, the priests, in the community of…

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Chayei Sarah 5773-2012

"Beware Not to Return My Son There!" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Chayei Sarah, we learn that Abraham, who is well-on in years, is deeply concerned about…

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Chayei Sara 5762-2001

"Raising Jewish Children in a Challenging Environment" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat Chayei Sarah, begins with the death of Sarah. Less widely known…

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Emor 5778-2018

“The Great Moses Seems Not to Know the Answer” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Emor, we encounter the episode of the מְגַדֵּף, megadef, the blasphemer, which…

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Emor 5764-2004

"The Blasphemer - A Midrashic View" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat Emor, deals, for the most part, with the laws of the Cohanim--the Priests. These…

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Vayechi 5762-2001

"The Debate: Burial In The Land of Israel" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week's parasha, parashat Vayechi, concludes the book of Bereshit, Genesis. Parashat Vayechi includes…

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Emor 5781-2021

"The Blasphemer - A Midrashic View" (Updated and revised from Emor 5764-2004) by, Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This coming week’s parasha, parashat Emor, is, for the most part, concerned…

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Seven Days to the Sea

The Passover celebration lasts seven days (eight days, outside of Israel). The first day (and second, outside of Israel) is a Yom Tov, festival day, on which the seder is celebrated.…

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Matot-Masei 5764-2004

"The Mitzvah of Living in the Land of Israel" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In parashat Masei, the second of this week's double parashiot, G-d speaks to Moses in the Plains of Moab and…

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Terumah 5772-2012

"The Outer Altar" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald With this week's parasha, parashat Terumah, we begin to read a cycle of five Torah portions that extensively describe the building and…

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Vayeitzei 5778-2017

“Three Wells ” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Vayeitzei, Jacob leaves Beer Sheba to escape the wrath of Esau and travels to Haran to be with his uncle,…

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Seven Days to the Sea

The Passover celebration lasts seven days (eight days, outside of Israel). The first day (and second, outside of Israel) is a Yom Tov, festival day, on which the seder is celebrated.…

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Seven Days To The Sea

The Passover celebration lasts seven days (eight days, outside of Israel. For more information as to why, please click here). The first day (and second, outside of Israel) is a Yom Tov,…

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Seven Days To The Sea

The Passover celebration lasts seven days (eight days, outside of Israel. For more information as to why, please click here). The first day (and second, outside of Israel) is a Yom…

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