A Bisl Torah

Summer Nights

Summer nights seem to last forever. The air thick with heat, ice cream stores packed with customers and a desire to be present with others a little bit longer. There may be a tendency to look towards September. The anticipation of what’s to come, a natural inclination to make plans, unpack goals, and shape the year ahead. And while there should be a little of that, summer nights give permission to revel in the moment. Hasidic rabbi, Levi Isaac Horowitz shares the following story: A king that owned a diamond mine told his employees that within a three hour time…

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Our children are spending a good part of their summer at Camp Ramah. While we know the inner workings of camp, we cannot help but check the camp photo sites multiple times a day. In conversations with close friends (also with camper children), we remind ourselves, “They’re fine! We’re fine!” And yet, we all habitually check the mailbox (snail and email) to see if there is communication from our kids, knowing full and well that there probably won’t be anything if we just checked five minutes ago.

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In the fictional book The Measure by Nikki Erlick, the world turns upside down with a single occurrence. Outside each home is a box containing a unique string to be matched with the people within the household. Accompanying the string is a message, “The measure of your life lies within.” Some strings are longer, others shorter. The measurement of the string foretells whether you will live longer or spend less physical time on earth.

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A Tree of Life

The Torah is often compared to “a tree of life.” As we sing when we return to the Torah to the ark, “It is a tree of life for those that hold fast to it.” What is the essence of the analogy? What is a tree of life?

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Souls Connected

It seems strange to think about Yom Kippur before celebrating Shavuot. However, the Torah reading compels us to think about the Yom Kippur rituals and how they apply to our lives, both during Yom Kippur and every day.

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