Hogwarts Youth Shabbos

Sermons

Eulogy for Max Jacob a’h

  Next week’s parsha begins with the words, vayeitzei Yaakov miBe’er Sheva, vayeilech Charana, and Yaakov left Be’er Sheva, and he went to Charan. Rashi famously asks, why does the Torah mention where Yaakov was leaving from? If he went to Charan, he most certainly left Be’er Sheva? Why does the Torah emphasize that Yaakov more »

Read More 

Ger V’toshav Anochi

In the early 18th century, one of the great Polish poskim, Halachic authorities, was a man by the name of Rabbi Dovid HaLevi Segal, otherwise known as the Taz, an abbreviation of his seminal work on Jewish Law, the Turei Zahav. The Taz was married to the daughter of Rav Yoel Sirkis, another leading Halachic more »

Read More 

What’s Next? The Complexities of Judgment Parshas Vayeira

About a year ago, I delivered a sermon on the topic of abuse. There were two points I was trying to convey: The first being to make yourself, as a parent and as a friend, the type of person who your child, family member or friend would be comfortable speaking to if they are G-d more »

Read More 

Torah Study Explained

About fifteen years ago, a group of college students visited Ner Israel. These were students with no religious background whatsoever, and they were being given a tour of the Yeshiva. So to really give them the full experience they were paired up with a couple of us in the Yeshiva and we were instructed to more »

Read More 

The First Humanist – Shabbos Chol Hamoed

Today, I’d like to talk about humanism. Humanism is defined by the International Humanist and Ethical Union as: “…a democratic and ethical life stance, which affirms that human beings have the right and responsibility to give meaning and shape to their own lives. It stands for the building of a more humane society through an ethic based more »

Read More 

A Jewish View on Wealth and Poverty – Part Two

“In the middle of the 17th century, the Vaad Arba Aratzot, the Council of Four Lands, an all-powerful body of rabbis and lay leaders, governing the Jewish communities of Europe made a decree that the more guests one invited to a festive occasion, the more one had to pay to the community tax collector – more »

Read More 

A Jewish Perspective on Wealth and Poverty Part 1

On November 9, 1922, Albert Einstein was awarded the Nobel prize for his groundbreaking work in physics. The only problem was that he wasn’t in Stockholm to receive his prize. Einstein had committed to giving some lectures in Japan and he was too much of a mench to cancel them. While in Japan, he stayed more »

Read More 

(Not) Too Late Yom Kippur Yizkor

On October 17, 1895, Yechezkel Taub was born in a small Polish town, to a prestigious rabbinic family. His father was a popular Chassidic rebbe, meaning he had a large group of devoted followers. These Chassidim were not the ones we imagine when we think of Eastern European Jews. They were a rather affluent group more »

Read More 

Candles for Diamonds Kol Nidrei

I have a confession to make. (I know, I know, wrong religion) My confession is that I really struggle with Kol Nidrei. I am moved by the haunting tune, who isn’t? There’s something magical about all the Sifrei Torah being taken out of the ark. I love that too. It’s the prayer itself that just more »

Read More 

The Sound of Silence, the Sound of our Soul Rosh Hashana Drasha Day Two

“Dear Rabbi, Although I was raised in a traditional home, was ‘brissed’ and ‘barmitzvad’ I have never had any faith or “religious” belief. I am now aged 34 and would describe myself as an atheist. I have no wish to be buried in a Jewish cemetery and have married a non-Jew in a civil ceremony.” more »

Read More 
%d bloggers like this: