Rabbi David Brofsky

Minhagei Aveilut of Sefirat Ha-Omer

The Minhagei Aveilut of Sefirat Ha-Omer By Rabbi David Brofsky The Gemara relates: It was said that R. Akiva had twelve thousand pairs of disciples, from Gabbat to Antipatris; and all of them died at the same time because they did not treat each other with respect. The world remained desolate until R. Akiva came …

Read moreMinhagei Aveilut of Sefirat Ha-Omer

Karpas at the Pesach Seder

The Role of Karpas at the Pesach Seder By Rabbi David Brofsky What is the reason behind the “Karpas” at the Pesach Seder, and what is the significance of its name? A number of Rishonim (see Rashbam), based upon the Gemara (Pesachim 114), imply that the karpas is meant to stimulate the children to ask …

Read moreKarpas at the Pesach Seder

The Miracle of Chanukah and its Message

The Miracle of Chanukah By Rabbi David Brofsky Chanukah commemorates the events that took place during the Hasmonean rebellion against Antiochus IV Epiphanes, the Seleucid king of Syria, in 164 BCE. In the Al HaNissim prayer inserted in the Shemoneh Esreh and Birkat HaMazon throughout the holiday, we relate: In the days of the Hasmonean …

Read moreThe Miracle of Chanukah and its Message

Simple Faith and Commitment

Simple Faith and Commitment: Beating the Aravot on Hoshana Raba By Rabbi David Brofsky One of the most intriguing and puzzling customs of the Festival of Succot is the beating of the Aravoton Hoshana Rabba, known as “chivut arava”. The Gemara (Succa 46b) refers to this mysterious ritual, and describes how outside of the Beit …

Read moreSimple Faith and Commitment

Eating on the Day Before Yom Kippur

Chicken Soup - Wikipedia Commons

Eating on the Day Before Yom Kippur R. Ḥiyya bar R. Difti taught: It says, “And you shall afflict yourselves on the ninth” . Now on the ninth do we fast? Do we not fast on the tenth? Rather, this is to tell you that anyone who eats and drinks on the ninth, the Scriptures …

Read moreEating on the Day Before Yom Kippur

Font Resize
Contrast