Kee Tavo 5776-2016

“The Power of the Word אָמֵן--‘Amen’” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Kee Tavo, Moses prepares the Jewish people for the experiences that that they will soon…

Read More

Kee Teitzei 5776-2016

“The Mitzvah of Burying the Dead” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald As previously noted, this week’s parasha, parashat Kee Teitzei, contains more mitzvot than any other parasha in the…

Read More

Va’etchanan 5776-2016

“Blessing G-d for the Good and the Bad" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald This week’s parasha, parashat Va’etchanan, includes the שְׁמַע--“Shemah,” the central Hebrew prayer in which Jews,…

Read More

Emor 5776-2016

“The Sabbath: Meeting G-d" A significant portion of this week’s parasha, parashat Emor, is devoted to the rules, regulations and observances of the Shabbat and the Jewish Holidays. In…

Read More

A Shabbat Addition

Feasting on Shabbat is one of the primary ways in which Jews observe the commandment to remember (zachor) the Sabbath day. With a special meal on Friday night, another for Shabbat lunch…

Read More

Vayakhel 5776-2016

“The Wise-Hearted Person” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald One of the dominant terms found in this week’s parasha, parashat Vayakhel, is the expression חֲכַם לֵב, a wise-hearted person.…

Read More

Terumah 5776-2016

“Charity–the Only True Possession” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Terumah, we read of the Israelites’ overwhelmingly generous response to the appeal for…

Read More

Grape Clusters and Rabbi Jossie

Rabbi Jossie (Joseph) ben Joezer was a Talmudic sage whose life marked the transition of one era to the next. According to the Talmud, when Rabbi Jossie and his colleague…

Read More

Foods of Tu b’Shevat

Today, Jews around the world celebrate Tu B'Shevat, the new year of the trees. Tu B'Shevat is often celebrated with the 7 species for which the Torah praises…

Read More

Return of the Dead

The relationship of the living and the dead is an oft debated topic by the sages. Judaism firmly believes that, post mortem, a person's neshama (soul) goes to an afterworld…

Read More

Daily Dose of Torah Study

Can Torah be studied every day? While there are many Jews who can and do study Torah daily, there are just as many who cannot, due to a wide variety of reasons ranging from lack of time…

Read More

Shelach 5775-2015

“The Sin of the Spies--Revisited” By Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Shelach, we read of the sin of the scouts whom Moses sent out, at G-d’s behest, to scout…

Read More

Vayakhel-Pekudei 5775-2015

“Bringing Heaven Down To Earth” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In parashat Pekudei, the second of this week’s double parshiot, Vayakhel-Pekudei, the Mishkan, the portable Tabernacle, is…

Read More

Hell

Judaism subscribes to the belief in an after-life and reward and punishment, but is there a concept of Hell in Judaism?Hell as commonly depicted--fire, brimstone, devils with…

Read More

What Is the Tree of Life?

In the Garden of Eden, which was teeming with all the wonderful flora of creation, God placed two special trees: Etz Hada’at (the Tree of Knowledge of Good and Evil) and Etz Hachaim (the…

Read More

Hannah and Her Sons

The story of Hannah and her seven sons is a story of the Jewish resistance to Antiochus' attempts to Hellenize the Jewish people around 166 B.C.E.When Antiochus demanded that Hannah's…

Read More

The Light of the First Day

“In the beginning God created the heaven and the earth. Now the earth was unformed and void, and darkness was upon the face of the deep; and the spirit of God hovered over the face of the…

Read More

Heartfelt Repentance

It is easy to speak of teshuva (repentance), but, actually, the process of repenting is quite challenging. Much can be learned about repentance from the story of Eleazer…

Read More

Va’etchanan 5774-2014

“The Prediction of Return” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. BuchwaldThis week’s parasha, parashat Va’etchanan, is always read after the Fast of the 9th of Av and after the conclusion of the period…

Read More

To Our Readers (Six Years!)

There are numerous mitzvot for which, according to the Talmud, a person is rewarded in both this world and the world to come. These mitzvot include honoring one’s parents, hospitality,…

Read More

Jokes On Us

“Knock. Knock” “Who’s There?” “Jewish” “Jewish Who?” “Jewish Treats”....Ok, not so funny, but, when you get to the bottom of it, April Fools Day (or All Fools Day) is hardly a Jewish…

Read More

Vayikra 5774-2014

“The Essence of Sacrifice” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Vayikra, we once again encounter the challenging issue of animal sacrifice. In several previous…

Read More

Terumah 5774-2014

“The Shulchan--Much More Than Just a Table” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Terumah, the Children of Israel are asked to donate the necessary materials to be…

Read More

Foods of Tu b’Shevat

This Thursday, Jews around the world celebrate Tu B'Shevat, the new year of the trees. Tu B'Shevat is often celebrated with the 7 species for which the Torah…

Read More

A Day For Sleep?

Among the many festivals assigned to the final days of December and the first days of January, one of the newest and, perhaps, the most logical, is the anonymous designation of January…

Read More

Hannah and Her Sons

The story of Hannah and her seven sons is the story of the Jewish resistance to Antiochus' attempts to Hellenize the Jewish people around 166 B.C.E. When Antiochus demanded that Hannah's…

Read More

Fortunate! Fortunate! Forunate!

Central among the morning prayers known as Pesukei D’zimra, Songs of Praise, is Psalm 145, which is more often referred to simply as Ashrei. Actually, Ashrei is included in the service…

Read More

Better Than A Bullock

In the times of the Temple, the most exalted form of worship was through sacrifices brought to Jerusalem. But, now the Jewish people have lived for centuries without the Holy Temple.…

Read More

Kee Tisah 5773-2013

"The Vengeful G-d--Revisited" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Kee Tisah, we read of the grave sin of the Golden Calf, a trespass that, despite the…

Read More

The Foods of Tu b’Shevat

This Shabbat, Jews around the world celebrate Tu B'Shevat, the new year of the trees. Tu B'Shevat is often celebrated with the 7 species for which the Torah praises…

Read More