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Posts by Rabbi Nicole Guzik

Elevate


It has become “tradition” to light yellow candles on Yom HaShoah, honoring the memories of those that perished in the Holocaust. What is the purpose in lighting these candles year after year?

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Crumbs


I thought cleaning for Pesach was a nightmare. Nope. Cleaning for Pesach was somewhat therapeutic. A blend of kashering dishes, clearing out the pantry, and giving the fridge a good scrubbing.

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What’s Missing?


One of the main themes of Passover is humility. We eat matzah that is flattened as a reminder to calm down our often puffed up egos. But I think we forget to concentrate on that which is missing: The yeast.

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Dayeinu


As I visit preschool classrooms and watch model seders, the prayer, “Dayeinu” is belted out, chanted with fervor and enthusiasm. Over any other Pesach tune, Dayeinu is clearly a childhood favorite. Perhaps it is because of the catchy melody. Perhaps because of the tradition of taking scallions, singing, and tapping the person that you find most annoying. Or perhaps because Dayeinu is the essence of the Passover holiday.

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A Stroll Through the Park


This past Wednesday was National Take a Walk in the Park Day. I laughed when I saw the name of the holiday. Why do we possibly need a holiday that celebrates walking through a park? Seems a little mundane to me. However, perhaps it is holier than I initially thought. According to NationalToday.com, researchers explain that those that live in apartment buildings with views of trees tend to be less aggressive than those with no view of nature. Being in and around nature often calms and soothes our nerves. Pausing and seeing God’s creations may remind us that we are part of something bigger than ourselves. A day that encourages less selfishness. A day that encourages more mindfulness.

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More Than Enough


Rabbi Jeffrey K. Salkin, spiritual leader of Temple Solel in Hollywood, Florida, recently shared an article about the future of religious leadership. In gleaning insight from the Megillah, he explains that clergy burnout (across faiths and denominations) can be avoided if one remembers to “center yourself on your goals, your ideals and your passions.”

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Yellow Roses


My Nana insisted on the presence of yellow roses at her funeral. When I asked my aunts, uncle, and dad why she loved yellow roses, the answer wasn’t particularly significant. She liked cheery, vibrant colors. She thought yellow brightened everything around you. And somehow, yellow roses have followed me since the day of her funeral.

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