Makkat Bechorot and the Great Cry in Egypt

In the climax of the ten plagues visited upon Egypt, Hashem commands Moses to tell the Israelites to sacrifice the Paschal lamb and smear its blood on the doorposts of their houses, in order to save themselves from Makkat Bechorot,…

Power and Responsibility: An Application of Genesis

First, God made light: day and night. Then, the sky and the earth. God next made vegetation, then the living creatures, and finally humankind. Genesis 1:28 reads: God blessed [humankind], and God said to them, “Be fruitful and multiply, and…

Justice in Memory

Past injustices can never be undone. For millennia, the Jewish people have been persecuted, exiled, confined to the margins of society. None of that can ever be changed. But, it would be wrong to think that we can only strive…

What is Justice?

What is justice? Most definitions of justice are circular. Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines it as, “the quality of being just, impartial, or fair.” When you try to figure out what it means to be just, impartial or fair, you get more…

Do the Clothes Make the Man?

Clothing is a leitmotif in the Joseph narrative.  His father gifts him the coat of many colors; his brothers rip it off his back and dip it in blood; Potiphar’s wife grabs his shirt as he flees from her advances;…

Yaakov Avinu, The Flu and Acing Your Job Interview

If you were to look at a list of the all-time marquee fights, you would see Ali v. Frazier, Pacquiao v. Mayweather, Mayweather v. Mcgregor (maybe) and the Hulk v Abomination, to name a few. I don’t know if you…

Finding Female Empowerment in Judaism, Part II: Women’s Customs

In my prior article, Finding Female Empowerment in Judaism, Part I: The Stories of the Bible, I highlighted several Bible stories that demonstrate and exude female empowerment. I will now continue the series by examining women’s spiritual roles in the…

Parashat Vayetze: Yaakov, the master of a silent art form

The pen is more powerful than the sword, yet there is something more powerful than the pen: We live in talkee-talk world. We have talk radio, tv talk shows, news-talk and various other channels of people talking or communicating in…

The Mizrahi Project: The next generation of Jews are Mizrahi

When one feels like “the other” it is a surreal experience. Even more surreal is to feel like an outsider in a space that is so familiar. This is the Mizrahi experience in Ashkenazi Jewish communal spaces. It is to…

Isaac: A biblical introvert

We know less about Isaac than any of the other patriarchs.  In the major events of his life he is acted upon – being bound for the Akedah and having Jacob steal the birthright by fooling Isaac in old age.…