parshat hashavua

Parshat Vayishlach: Dina’s Tragic Story

Rabbanit Devorah Evron

Parshat Vayishlach: Dina’s Tragic Story Rabbanit Devorah Evron is the Director of the Susi Bradfield Women’s Institute of Halakhic Leadership (WIHL)  A young woman comes to a new land, and ventures out to see who her neighbors our, and who she can connect with. She’s new on the block. This is what we read in the …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Vayishlach 5780

Shabbat Shalom: Parshat Vayishlach (Genesis 32:4 – 36:43)  By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin Efrat, Israel –  We left Jacob at the end of last week’s portion as he was leaving behind Laban and Laban-land, heaven-bent on returning to the land of Abraham and to the house of Isaac. Jacob understands that his inner self has been …

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Parshat Vayetze: Bidding farewell to idol-worship; this time, for good

rabbi chaim navon

Bidding farewell to idol-worship; this time, for good Prayer is, above all else, an intimate encounter between a person and God. The prayer’s content includes requests and supplications from God, but the essence of the prayer is embodied, first and foremost, by the act of turning to Hashem. Content comes second. Rabbi Chaim Navon, senior faculty …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Vayetze 5780

Shabbat Shalom: Parshat Vayetze (Genesis 28:10-32:3)  By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin Efrat, Israel –  “And Jacob kissed Rachel, and he lifted up his voice and he wept” (Gen 29:11) The Bible presents two models for finding one’s life partner: the Isaac-Rebekah arranged marriage model, and the romantic Jacob-Rachel model. In both instances, there must be “love” (ahava): …

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Parshat Toldot: An anti-hero or a hero against his will?

Yonat Lemberger

Parashat Toldot: An anti-hero or a hero against his will? The Esau of the Bible undergoes a change of image. He is portrayed differently in the biblical text than in rabbinical texts. His character is furthered transformed in Hebrew poetry. Yonat Lemberger is the principal of OTS’ Oriya High School for Girls. Esau is the …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Toldot 5780

 Shabbat Shalom: Toldot (Genesis 25:19-28:9) By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin    Efrat, Israel — “And they said, we saw indeed that the Lord was with you and we said: let there now be an oath between us, between us and you, and let us make a covenant with you.” (Gen. 26:28) On what basis, and with …

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Parshat Chayei Sarah: “I am a resident alien among you”

Rabbi Yehoshua Grunstein

Parshat Chayei Sarah: “I am a resident alien among you” We live and act according to the values of Abraham, our forefather. On the one hand, we are “residents”, part and parcel of the wider world, like all other human beings. On the other hand, we are “aliens”, strangers. A special nation. We have a …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Chayei Sarah 5780

Shabbat Shalom: Chayei Sarah (Genesis 23:1-25:18) By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin    Efrat, Israel – “Sarah died in Kiryat Arba, which is Hebron in the Land of Canaan. And Abraham came to eulogize Sarah and to weep over her.” (Genesis 23:2) What was Sarah doing in Hebron? According to a simple reading of the text, Abraham, …

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Parshat Vayera: What could be greater than meeting Hashem Himself?

Bezalel Safra photographed by Rony Nathan

Parshat Vayera: What could be greater than meeting Hashem Himself? Do you greet your neighbor warmly when you meet him or her? Do you greet the security guard at the shopping mall without being prompted to do so? Our forefather Abraham treated even the lowliest of people with respect, even though he had more than enough reason …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Vayera 5780

Shabbat Shalom: Vayera (Genesis 18:1-22:24) By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin    Efrat, Israel – One of the most difficult stories of the Bible – and certainly the complex highlight of Vayera – is the “binding” (and near slaughter) of Isaac, but the tale preceding it may legitimately be called the “binding” (near death) of Ishmael. This …

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Parshat Lech Lecha: Moving Forward and Developing Constantly

Parshat Lech Lecha: Avraham’s way is about going forward and constantly developing It is no coincidence that the term halakha is used to denote the path a Jew is commanded to take.  This is the path we tread, the path along which we develop. We don’t remain “boxed-in” or adhere to norms. This is a …

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“Shabbat Shalom” – Parshat Lech Lecha 5780

Shabbat Shalom: Lech Lecha (Genesis 12:1-17:27) By Rabbi Shlomo Riskin    Efrat, Israel – “And there came one that had escaped, and told Abram the Hebrew: now he dwelt by the oaks of Mamre, the Amorite, brother of Eshcol, and brother of Aner; and these were confederate with Abram.” (Genesis 14:13) “Go away, for your …

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