Rosh Hashanah

No Regrets?

September 8, 2009
No Regrets?

Elul thoughts: "No Regrets" was almost a motto for my generation coming of age in the late 60s and early 70s.  Probably because we saw too many "lives of quiet desperation" around us, housewives who wanted to be fashion designers, and clerks who wanted to be artists.  It's a great hubris: the only way to...
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Return Again — Neshama Carlebach

August 19, 2009

What a great way to start the High Holiday preparation season — the very first piece of music I heard on Rosh Chodesh Elul was Neshama Carlebach singing her father's song (Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach, z"l) "Return Again."  The video is NOT of her performance this evening in Jerusalem — it's a performance in Amsterdam...
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Happy 5769!

October 3, 2008
Happy 5769!

As 5769 begins there are certainly a lot of “challenges” around us – the global economy in turmoil, Iran rattling sabres, a lot of fear and uncertainty in the air – yet despite it all, regarding the status of Israel and life in Israel in the new year, I am cautiously optimistic. Outgoing (outgoing...
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Rosh Hashanah 5766 — Are you a net asset to the planet?

September 26, 2006

Today is the great Day of Judgment. Our prayers today reflect a teaching from the Talmud that tells us that God has two books open today, the Book of Life and the Book of Death. The totally righteous—those who have all assets and no debts, all mitzvot and no sins—go straight into the Book...
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Cheshbon Hanefesh

September 13, 2006

In these days leading up to Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, our tradition tells us we should be taking stock.  We should try to spend a little time each day in "cheshbon hanefesh," taking an accounting of the soul, evaluating our past year to see where we should focus our attentions to better ourselves....
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Torah shall go forth from (to?) Zion

July 6, 2006
Torah shall go forth from (to?) Zion

Every Shabbat during the Torah service when we bring the Torah out of the ark we sing "Ki Mitzion Tatzei Torah," for Torah shall go forth from Zion, which is quote from Isaiah 2:3. So I couldn’t help but think of that phrase as I was carrying a Torah with me TO Jerusalem.  A...
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