Parent Son Olympiad. May 21

Sermons

Reflection on the Election – Parshas Lech Lecha

This past Wednesday, at services in Ner Tamid, there was some heated debate. After speaking to colleagues, I found out that the same debate took place in shuls all over the country. After the silent Amidah, some argued that we should recite Hallel in thanksgiving for a Trump victory. Others argued that we should say more »

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Contradictions and Non-Contradictions: Science and Torah and UNESCO’s Outlandish Statement

All of us at some point in our lives are faced with contradictions. We firmly believe something to be true, we’ve been taught a certain way our whole life, and one day we’re confronted with something that seems to entirely discredit what we thought we knew. It’s a disconcerting experience and for the intellectually honest, more »

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A Jewish View on Tolerance Sukkos Day One

Highway 61 Revisited was the sixth and possibly most influential album produced by Bob Dylan. The title song, Highway 61 Revisited opens with G-d asking Abram to kill his son, Isaac on Highway 61. All Along the Watchtower, another one of the most popular and reproduced Dylan songs is loosely based on a passage of more »

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The Small Things Yizkor Yom Kippur

At the height of the first Intifada, an Israeli soldier, named Gadi Rimon was shot by a terrorist outside the town of Ramallah. His shooter, seeing the soldier lying in a pool of blood, left him for dead. A few moments later, a young man by the name of Shlomo Bergman drove by, saw the more »

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Shehechiyanu Kol Nidrei

About two years ago, one Shabbos morning, I was getting ready to leave shul with my family. I was loading my son Shlomo into his stroller right through those doors and as he was getting into his seat, he looked up at the big picture of Rabbi Leibowitz, and said, “Abba, who is that?” I more »

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Spontaneity and Structure First Day of Rosh Hashana

By a show of hands, how many of you are sitting in the exact same seat as you did last year? How many of you, upon entering the synagogue, walked through the same entranceway that you did last year? I imagine that those of you who came late last year, probably came late this year, more »

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Riding the Waves of Inspiration – And Staying On Shabbos Shuva Drasha

Stephen Covey begins his blockbuster book, the Seven Habits of Highly Successful People with a personal anecdote. Allow me to read it to you: “I remember a mini-Paradigm Shift I experienced one Sunday morning on a subway in New York. People were sitting quietly — some reading newspapers, some lost in thought, some resting with more »

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Awe Second Day of Rosh Hashana

The 5th symphony, the 9th symphony, Moonlight Sonata, Fidelio, those are just a smattering of the avalanche of Ludwig Van Beethoven’s musical output. In total, he wrote nine symphonies, 32 piano sonatas, one opera, five piano concertos, and many chamber works. But it wasn’t the volume that set him apart. Beethoven was one of the most influential more »

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Developing Altruism Parshas Ki Savo

I was 19 years old and driving back to my home in Tacoma, Washington, down the Interstate 5 freeway, when a little dog darted out in front of my car.  I did exactly what you’re not supposed to do, which is swerve to avoid it. And I discovered why you’re not supposed to do that. more »

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Pablo Escobar and Changing Evil Into Virtue Parshas Shoftim

I’m a little new to this whole school supply shopping. That became abundantly clear to me when I showed up at Target on September 5th hoping to buy three binders and two sticks of glue. The store looked like it got hit by a hurricane; everything was in disarray. But more importantly, nothing of any more »

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