Be a Tzaddik (Passover 5775)

March 29, 2015
Be a Tzaddik (Passover 5775)

Many Jews who used to look to the East for spirituality – Buddhism, Taoism, etc. – have discovered Jewish mysticism and eagerly study kabbalah and chasidut. I count myself among that group. Yet there are some topics in chasidut that are “challenging” for the typical liberal Jew, and one of those is the role...
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Drinking on Purim

March 5, 2015
Drinking on Purim

You don’t have to be a rabbi to lead services, conduct weddings, bar mitzvahs, or funerals. In fact there’s only one thing rabbis can do that lay people can’t do. Make up rules. So here are some new rules from me. According to the Talmud “A person is obligated to drink on Purim until...
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Bo 5775 – Come to Pharaoh

January 23, 2015
Bo 5775 – Come to Pharaoh

And the Lord said to Moses: Come to Pharaoh…”  Exodus 10:1 This week’s Torah ready, parshat Bo, takes its name from the word “Bo,” which means “come” in the opening verse. It’s curious phrasing, and as non-standard in Hebrew as it is in English.  Shouldn’t it say “Go to Pharaoh…” ?  Why does God...
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Vayechi 5775 — Joseph and Health

January 2, 2015
Vayechi 5775 — Joseph and Health

So Joseph died, being a hundred and ten years old. And they embalmed him, and he was put in a coffin in Egypt… Genesis 50:26 I’ve been training to run a marathon. Having recently completed running/hiking the Israel Trail (700 miles) I felt I needed a new challenge. I also figured it was a...
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Israel Trail Day 52 (Final Day) Netafim to Eilat

January 1, 2015
Israel Trail Day 52 (Final Day) Netafim to Eilat

December 25, 2014 Wikiloc Map: Netafim to Eilat Distance: 18.1 km Total distance since Tel Dan: 1127km (699 miles) This was my final day on the Israel Trail. I kept finding it hard to believe that I was actually finishing. The trail has been such a big part of my life for the last...
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Israel Trail Day 51 Be’er Ora to Netafim

December 23, 2014
Israel Trail Day 51 Be’er Ora to Netafim

December 15, 2014 Wikiloc Maps: Part 1 Part 2 Distance: 32km Total Distance since Tel Dan: 1109km (687 miles) For logistical reasons, I decided to combine what Jacob Saar’s guidebook counts as two days into one day. Turned out to be one of the more difficult days I had on the trail, but it...
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