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24JEWISH Jewish Holidays
    Lag B´Omer    latest shiurim english, hebrew and more…


Section Jewish Music & Simcha Channel: 24JEWISH ALERTS large selection videos and feeds in each section

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Video Jewish Music & Simcha of the Day


Sefirat HaOmer ספירת העומר yidid nefesh by lev tahor and more..

Lev Tahor 2

Ysoscher Gutman Singing Reb Meir Baal Hanes

The Mezamrim Choir Singing February 2009

Lag BaOmer Medley 5773 – Cantor Yitzhak Halfon & The Kharkov boys choir – מחרוזת ל”ג בעומר

Lag BaOmer Medley – 5773 (2013)
Cantor Yitzhak Halfon & The Kharkov boys choir
(Cheder Menachem Kharkov)

 24JEWISH  Section  SEARCH Music & Simcha 

Section Jewish Torah Insights Channel shiurim Daf Yomi, and more… 24JEWISH ALERTS

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24JEWISH Jewish Holidays    Lag B´Omer    latest shiurim english, hebrew and more…

Shaving for Shabbath During Sefirat HaOmer: Permissible or Obligatory?

Visit us at http://www.MachonShilo.org

Lag BeOmer – Breslov Shiur

Seeing some points about the light of Rebbe Shimon Bar Yochai, through the lens of Breslov teachings.

Rabbi Mendel Kessin Lag Baomer 5773 shiur

Given in Lakewood, NJ

הרב יוסף בן פורת

Rabbi Zamir Cohen עולם התורה

Rabbi zamir cohen Women In Judaismעולם התורה
Rabbi zamir cohen Why Kosherעולם התורה
Rabbi zamir cohen The Secret of the Jewish Brainעולם התורה
Rabbi Zamir Cohen Bar Mitzvahעולם התורה
Rabbi Zamir Cohen Cooking rulesעולם התורה
Rabbi Zamir Cohen A Nation is Bornעולם התורה
Seal of Truth Shocking Account of Near Death Experience English Subtitlesעולם התורה
Rabbi zamir cohen Jew And Gentile Wheretoעולם התורה

…שיעור דף יומי הרב גלעד בניאל מסכת …. דף

Daf Yomi Talmud …. Yom Tov page … Gemarrah Festival Rabbi Moshe P. Weisblum דף יומי תלמוד גמרא ביצה ל”ו

Popular Daf Yomi videos

Rabbi Dovid Feinstein

Daf Yomi Kolel Happy Hour

Este é primeiro o canal de shiurim ao vivo em português no You Tube do mundo!

Por que “Happy Hour”?

Este projeto foi idealizado para que, logo após o trabalho, as pessoas possam estudar Torá de forma leve e agradável.

As aulas do Kolel Happy Hour são realizadas por David Leitman, na Sinagoga CCI (Rua Anita Garibaldi, 37A – Copacabana), de segunda a quinta, a partir das 19:15 (Shiur – Ao Vivo) de Guemará Kidushin, seguido de um lanche e pequenas aulas (também ao vivo, aqui no YouTube), de filosofia judaica e leis práticas (halachá). As aulas terminam em torno de 20:45.

Já as aulas de Daf Hayomi- Guemará Berachot – (gravadas), são realizadas por Michel Klein, de segunda a sexta, após shacharit,às 8:15 na Sinagoga Kehilat Moriah (Rua Pompeu Loureiro,48 – Copacabana).

Quando há algum feriado ou chag, não há aulas.

Por favor, não assista os vídeos em shabat e yom tov.

Abaixo você confere os links dos livros que nós estudamos. Bons estudos!

 Daf Rabbanim



Daf Yomi Megillah Talmud Rabbi Weisblum דף יומי מגילה ‘ הרב משה ויסבלום

Daf Yomi Talmud Succah  Gemarrah Succot Rabbi Weisblum דף יומי תלמוד גמרא סוכה


24Jewish Video Jewish Torah Insights of the Day,Rabbi Yosef Mizrachi – Emotions – Truth And The Difference Between Believing And Knowing, Part 2 Rabbi Yossi Mizrachi on TorahAnyTime channel, Great Videos Selection


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24JEWISH Alerts Section jewish Recipes Please Ask the Rabbi about Kashrut

Jewish News <><> Simcha Channel <><> Torah Insights <><> Jewish Recipes <><> Jewish Life <><> Das Jüdische leben <><> La Vie Juive <><> Jewish Communities <><> Jewish Culture & Yiddish <><> Jewish History <><> This Day, In Jewish History Tanya Shiurim Shiurim Hayom Yom <><> V I D E O C L I P O F T H E D A Y <><> This week’s Torah Portion

New Kosher restaurant in Brussels gains popularity

Food, in particular Kosher food, is an important part of the Jewish way of life.

How to Make Chocolate Babka

http://www.cookkosher.com/ To print the recipe visit: http://bit.ly/shUhy1. CookKosher.com demonstrates how to make Babka with a chocolate filling. Babka is a twisted yeast cake roll with a filling, similar to Kokosh cake. Enjoy this beautiful yeasty, chocolatey cake!

Jewish Food Kasha Kasha Recipes Kupecheskaya Russian Jewish Kasha Recipe

how to make good recipes

Restaurant for Mothers Day in NY | Kosher restaurants in NYC | Manhattan Talia’s Steakhouse & Bar

Treat Mom with Great Food at Talia’s Steakhouse, the Glatt Kosher restaurant on the Upper West Side of Manhattan NYC the best place in New York to celebrate mothers day in NYC 668 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10025
(212)580-3770 http://taliassteakhouse.com
Restaurant for Mothers Day in NY | Kosher restaurants in NYC | Manhattan Talia’s Steakhouse & Bar

Spanish kosher food market set to grow as rising number of Jewish visitors drives demand

Spain is becoming an increasingly popular destination for Jewish tourists, some wanting to rediscover their historic Sephardic roots, others simply wanting to enjoy the sun, and the country’s gastronome culture, which plays a huge role in the Spanish experience… so what exactly is the cuisine on offer here for Jewish visitors?

What it takes to prepare a Jewish Kosher meal

A chef from the TV-Show “Private Chefs of Beverly Hills” learns what it takes to prepare a Kosher meal

Chicken Soup: A Jewish recipe

To learn a little about Jewish cuisine click the link below.


Chicken Soup: A Jewish recipe serves 4-6 people

1 whole chicken, cut up
1 bunch of dill
1 bunch of parsley
1 wax turnip, cut into large chunks
2-3 parsnips, cut into large chunks
2-3 carrots, cut into large chunks
3 leeks, cleaned, quartered and cut in half
1 onion, quartered
salt to taste
Jewish pasta, cooked separately

– Place the chicken in the bottom of the pot.
– In layers, add carrots, parsnips, turnips, leeks, onion.
– Top with parsley and dill.
– Fill water to cover all ingredients.
– Add salt to taste.
– Bring to a boil, remove any foam. When it reaches a boil, reduce heat to medium/low, cover the pot and simmer for 1 hour.
– After 1 hour the vegetables should be tender and not overcooked.
– Discard parsley and dill. Remove chicken to cool. Pull off all the meat and add it back into the pot. Discard the bones. Meanwhile, cooked the pasta.
– To serve, add pasta to a bowl. Ladle the soup over the top. Serve with bread and butter.

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http://www.joyofkosher.com/recipe/fis&#8230; | Jamie Geller from Kosher.com shows you how to make her Kosher spinach and feta fish bites. Perfect as an appetizer or for adding to your favorite pasta dish. Jamie Geller is the author of the critically-acclaimed cookbook, “Quick and Kosher: Recipes from the Bride Who Knew Nothing” (Feldheim Publishers, 2007)


24Jewish Video Jewish Recipes of the Day The Simple Kitchen BY CHABAD, Part 2 MIMOUNA channel Great Videos Selection Please Ask the Rabbi about Kashrut

Tzimmes – Jewish carrot dish

Mr. Hebrew makes Tzimmes. The expression “Dont make tzimmes out of it” (a big deal) isn’t really true when you use Neal’s preparation method.

Wikipedia definition: Tzimmes or tsimmes (Yiddish, Hebrew: צימעס) is a traditional Jewish dish in which the principal ingredient is diced or sliced carrots, sometimes combined with dried fruits like prunes or raisins, or chunks of meat (usually brisket or flanken). The dish is cooked slowly over low heat and flavored with honey and sometimes cinnamon. The variations are endless. The non-meat version tends to be sweeter, along the lines of candied yams.

Tzimmes is often part of the Rosh Hashanah meal, when it is traditional to eat sweet and honey-flavored dishes.

The name may come from the German words zum (for) and essen (eating). Some say the word is a corruption of the word ‘simmer.’ “To make a big tzimmes over something” means to make a big fuss.

Bubby Chanele makes Gefilte Fish in Yiddish


Bubby Chanele Gonshor, of Montreal, Canada, visits her granddaughter in Berkeley, California, and teachers her how to make Geflite Fish in Yiddish.


Video Jewish Recipes of the Day



24JEWISH  Section  SEARCH jewish Recipes

Section Events, Jewish Life : 24JEWISH ALERTS large selection in each section

Jewish News <><> Simcha Channel <><> Torah Insights <><> Jewish Recipes <><> Jewish Life <><> Das Jüdische leben <><> La Vie Juive <><> Jewish Communities <><> Jewish Culture & Yiddish <><> Jewish History <><> This Day, In Jewish History Tanya Shiurim Shiurim Hayom Yom <><> V I D E O C L I P O F T H E D A Y <><> This week’s Torah Portion


Select Section WEEKLY Parshat Bechukotai  language hebrew,french,english,spanish,german,russian, Machon Meir, CHABAD,The Jewish Woman,YOUTH/TEENS SHIURIM & COMMENTARIES

24JEWISH Jewish Holidays
    Lag B´Omer    latest shiurim english, hebrew and more…

24Jewish Video Focus on Rabbi Meir Baal Haness .Jewish Torah Insights of the Day. Rabbi Meir Baal Haness,sa force et son histoire, Part 2 Reb Meyer Baal Haness Charity Channel, Great Videos Selection

Brooklyn Hasidism

An outsider looking in to Hasidic Culture in Brooklyn, NY.

Documentary Filmmaker and Native New Yorker Cassandra Rose explores the traditions, myths of Chasidic Culture. A culture that is complex and obscure to outsiders of their community, (including me!)
I am very thankful for the openness, honesty and cooperation of all those involved.

A Life Apart: Hasidism in America – Part 1 – 9

Hasidic Jews seem alien, and even hostile, to those outside their culture,which frequently includes other Jews. They dress differently, don’t mingle between the sexes, speak Yiddish, and wear side curls, all in an attempt to rigorously follow the commandments of the Torah. They tend to keep to themselves, shunning television and the media so outside influences cannot corrupt their values and views. Yet filmmakers Oren Rudavsky and Menachem Daum were able to enter their world, and the result is the fascinating documentary A Life Apart: Hasidism in America. Using interviews with academics and members of the community and some historical footage, the filmmakers trace the growth of Hasidic groups in the United States. Groups formed around particular Rebbes (learned leaders) and they took their names from their Eastern European home cities (the Satmar Hasids, the Breslov Hasids, and so on). Leonard Nimoy and Sarah Jessica Parker narrate, explaining how this movement came to America and how it was able to flourish. Dissenting voices also appear, in the form of neighborhood people who are distressed at the Hasids’ refusal to speak to members not in their community and of a young woman, Pearl Gluck, who left the community in order to pursue her writing and to follow a life of her own choosing. Many Hasids refuse to speak on camera, and we see many shielding themselves with hands or coats so as not to appear on film. But those who do appear are poignant in their discussions of why the Hasidic life is important to them. One man speaks to the directors, even as he acknowledges that he will never see the movie, but he will do it “in order to help a Jew make a living.” One couple, Holocaust survivors, are not Hasidic, but their children are, and the reasonings of both the parents and the children are interesting. This film, shown on PBS, is a consequential look into a lifestyle many of us don’t understand, and it may help in increasing an understanding.

Living the Legacy of the Rebbe and the Rav

“Living the Legacy of the Rebbe and the Rav” featured an introduction from Rabbi Moshe Weinberger, Mashpia in Yeshiva University and founding Morah d’Asrah of Congregation Aish Kodesh in Woodmere, NY. The main speakers of the evening included Rabbi Dr. Jacob J. Schacter, University Professor of Jewish History and Jewish Thought in Yeshiva University, Rabbi Yosef Y. Jacobson, one of the most sought after speakers in the Jewish world today and world renowned scholar of Chabad Chassidus, Rabbi Zevulun Charlop, dean emeritus of the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary, and Rabbi Yehuda Krinsky, personal secretary to the Lubavitcher Rebbe for over 40 years and Chairman of Merkos L’Inyonei Chinuch and Machne Israel, the educational and social services arms of the Chabad-Lubavitch worldwide organization. Dr. Lawrence Schiffman, Yeshiva University Vice-Provost, served as moderator

Restaurant for Mothers Day in NY | Kosher restaurants in NYC | Manhattan Talia’s Steakhouse & Bar

Treat Mom with Great Food at Talia’s Steakhouse, the Glatt Kosher restaurant on the Upper West Side of Manhattan NYC the best place in New York to celebrate mothers day in NYC 668 Amsterdam Ave, New York, NY 10025
(212)580-3770 http://taliassteakhouse.com
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24Jewish Video Clip Event of the day, Georges Moustaki : Les Mères Juives, Part 2 A Yiddishe Mama, Great Videos Selection


Television biography tells of ‘Jewish Cardinal’ Lustiger
San Diego Jewish World
The French TV film The Jewish Cardinal, which has been receiving a limited release in the United States, follows the crucial years of the life of …

The Maccabeats – Nachamu (One Day More)

Download “One Day More” on iTunes: https://itunes.apple.com/us/album/one&#8230;

The versions of “Nachamu” that make up this track were originally performed by Safam and Tzlil V’zemer Boys Choir.

This and all Maccabeats music is recorded a cappella.

Channel of Breslev Israel

Breslev Israel Films is your cyber haven for love, soul, and joy.
Spreading the teachings of Rebbe Nachman of Breslev of blessed memory, and our contemporary spiritual leader Rabbi Shalom Arush, our English-speaking rabbis include (alphabetically) Dr. Zev Ballen, Rabbi Lazer Brody, Rabbi Dror Moshe Cassutto, Rabbi Elchanan Elgorod, and Rabbi Natan Maimon.
Our channel also features inspirational clips and music from the Jewish music world’s leading performers.
Check out our multi-language web portal at http://www.breslev.co.il.

The Jewish World

WorldJewish Congress


Jewish life in Ukraine today: Yaakov Bleich, Chief Rabbi of Ukraine and Vice-President of the WJC, offers his perspective on the challenges ahead of one of the biggest Jewish communities in Europe. Distributed by OneLoad.com

Dejavu band – israeli cover band | jewish wedding band | band for events | wedding in israel



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Centre for Jewish Life – London·

Transformational Tuesdays: TED Style – Keith Breslauer


The Centre for Jewish Life offers a varied and exciting programme of discovery as you explore classic and mystical themes in a format tailored to you.

From one-to-one learning sessions to discussion groups and lectures, you have an open invitiation to join us for a personal journey that promises to enlighten and satisfy – whatever your previous experience of Jewish study.

Whether you are asking the questions you’ve always wanted to ask, or you’ve come along to hear an internationally respected speaker, you’re equally welcome.

Whatever the case, it’s never too late to find out more about your Jewish Heritage – if you don’t find what you’re looking for, just ask! Our programme is your programme.

Chabad House Bowery

Rabbis honored for applying Jewish law to modern life
Jewish Telegraphic Agency
JERUSALEM (JTA) — Four leading rabbis will be honored for their work in applying halacha, or Jewish law, to modern life. The Katz Award 2014 …
Memorial Day muster in NYC for military siddur
San Diego Jewish World
NEW YORK — The Shabbat of Memorial Day weekend later this month will mark a first in American Jewish life: Three New York City congregations …
Anita Diamant’s ‘The Red Tent’ to become miniseries
Jewish Telegraphic Agency
Diamant, the award-winning author of six books about contemporary Jewish life and the novel “Day After Night,” said “The Red Tent” struck a universal …

Jewish Rennaissance in Krakow
Arutz Sheva
In recent years, however, Jewish life in Poland is experiencing a renaissance, and dozens of major events designed to expose Jewish culture to wider .

Section Jewish Communities: 24JEWISH ALERTS large selection videos and feeds in each section

Jewish News <><> Simcha Channel <><> Torah Insights <><> Jewish Recipes <><> Jewish Life <><> Das Jüdische leben <><> La Vie Juive <><> Jewish Communities <><> Jewish Culture & Yiddish <><> Jewish History <><> This Day, In Jewish History Tanya Shiurim Shiurim Hayom Yom <><> V I D E O C L I P O F T H E D A Y <><> This week’s Torah Portion

The Jews of Indonesia

The untold story of the Jews of Indonesia, who experienced the horrors of World War II massacred at the hands of the Japanese in the Far East.

Federation of Jewish Communities of the CIS (FSU)

The Federation of Jewish Communities (FJC) was established in November 1998 to revive the Jewish communities of the Former Soviet Union .

We provide humanitarian aid and Jewish education, organize cultural events and religious services, and help develop Jewish communities and rebuild Jewish institutions. Our main bureau represents member interests on the international front, and we also represent community members in government and institutional forums. The FJC, at all times, strives to develop and maintain good working relations with members of other faiths.

Since its launch we have posted over ninety rabbis and countless community leaders in central locations, and have been recognized as an umbrella organization that represents and administers a variety of established funds and institutions that operate in the region.

Please visit us at: http://www.FJC.ru

jCommunities2 Kopie

Reports Of Plans To Evacuate Odesa’s Jewish Community Appear To Miss Mark
Odesa’s Chabad House — one of two functioning synagogues in a city that hosts an estimated 12,000 Jews — is about a 10-minute walk from the trade …
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Unless the Jewish community makes room for loving disagreement with … Loving Israel includes rejoicing in a vibrant and vital Jewish society and …
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Roman Jews Show Support for Nigerian Schoolgirls, Persecuted Christians
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The initiative on Thursday is being co-sponsored by the Rome Jewish community and the Community of Sant’ Egidio, a Roman Catholic association …
Michel Gugenheim, French Chief Rabbi, Accused Of Extortion Over Religious Divorce
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Paris’ and France’s chief Rabbi Michel Gugenheim delivers a specch during a meeting with representatives of French Jewish communities on June 2, …
READER SUBMITTED: Coming Of Age Around The World
Hartford Courant
Speakers will include Rabbi Debra Cantor of Congregation B’nai Tikvoh-Sholom, representing the Jewish community; Rosaida Morales Rosario, …





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Itche Kadoozy Chanukah Mini-Series – Part I – Inspiration & Entertainment – Chabad.org
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Select Section Jewish Culture & Yiddish: 24JEWISH ALERTS large selection videos and feeds in each section


Jewish News <><> Simcha Channel <><> Torah Insights <><> Jewish Recipes <><> Jewish Life <><> Das Jüdische leben <><> La Vie Juive <><> Jewish Communities <><> Jewish Culture & Yiddish <><> Jewish History <><> This Day, In Jewish History Tanya Shiurim Shiurim Hayom Yom <><> V I D E O C L I P O F T H E D A Y <><> This week’s Torah Portion

The Life and Work of Shmuel Nissan Godiner

Diana Cohen, a social worker, talks about her father’s cousin, the Yiddish writer Shmuel Nissan Godiner, and her efforts to translate his work.

To learn more about the Wexler Oral History Project, visit: http://www.yiddishbookcenter.org/tell&#8230;

Popular San Francisco Jewish Film Festival videos SFJFF Presents: The Tailor

Culture and confusion meet on a Brooklyn street, in this hilariously charming tale of similarities amid diversity. Film directed by Gordon Grinberg

This short film is part of the San Francisco Jewish Film Festival short film showcase program, SFJFF Presents. To discover more great Jewish short films each month, join the SFJFF YouTube channel by clicking the red SUBSCRIBE button above.

For more details about SFJFF films and programs, visit http://www/sfjff.org.

Discovering Another Aspect of Jewish Culture: A Culinary Course In Israel

Ethan Kaseff, 2012 January term Yiddish student, describes a culinary course he took while spending a year in Israel. To learn more about the Wexler Oral His.

The Spielberg Jewish Film Archive – Henrietta Szold

Name: Henrietta Szold
Year: 1946
Duration: 00:32:02
Language: Hebrew

Abstract: A tribute to the founder of Hadassah.

The Spielberg Jewish Film Archive –
The 500 films, selected for the virtual cinema, reflect the vast scope of documentary material collected in the Spielberg Archive. The films range from 1911 to the present and include home movies, short films and full length features.

שם: הנרייאטה סולד
שנה: 1946
אורך: 00:32:02
שפה: עברית

תקציר: סרט הוקרה על הנרייטה סולד, המייסדת ארגון הדסה.

ארכיון הסרטים היהודיים על שם סטיבן שפילברג –
חמש מאות הסרטים שנבחרו עבור הקולנוע הווירטואלי משקפים את ההיקף הנרחב של החומר התיעודי בארכיון שפילברג. באתר ישנם סרטים משנת 1911 ועד ימינו אלה ביתיים, קצרים ובאורך מלא.

כל הזכויות שמורות לארכיון הסרטים היהודיים על שם סטיבן שפילברג ולאוניברסיטה העברית בירושלים 2010; דף הבית; http://www.spielbergfilmarchive.org.il

ESSAY: Disguised Blessings

QUESTION OF THE WEEK: Do We Do Mitzvahs for Ourselves or for G-d?By Yisroel CotlarIyar 15, 5774 · May 15, 2014


When we do a mitzvah, are we doing it for ourselves or for G‑d? For example, if I give a dollar to a homeless guy, am I doing it for my sake—the act makes me feel happy and compassionate—or for G‑d? Are mitzvot bringing me closer to G‑d, or to happiness?


I enjoyed reading your interesting and well-thought-out question!

I like to think of a mitzvah as a multi-runged ladder. All the rungs are there, and the combination of all of them makes the ladder complete; the question is only which one we choose to focus on.

The word mitzvah has a dual meaning: “commandment” and “bond.” At its essential level, a mitzvah is a connection with G‑d created by fulfilling His commandment. This is the ultimate aspect of a mitzvah—the highest rung of the ladder.

That said, something that is essentially good will also be good on every other rung of the ladder.

Let’s use eating kosher as an example. When one eats kosher, he is 1) physically strengthened, 2) spiritually refined, 3) gaining satisfaction and meaning in life, 4) earning reward in the world to come, 5) making this world a better place and 6) connecting to G‑d.

And all of these are true. But first and foremost, it starts with the fact that eating kosher is being done as a commandment which establishes a connection with G‑d. The rest follow automatically.

The Torah teaches a mitzvah should be performed lishmah (for its sake)—without incentives or personal considerations. It should be done simply because this is what G‑d wants. Yet this doesn’t happen overnight. The rabbis therefore taught that one can begin by serving G‑d with a personal incentive. Indeed, the Torah itself mentions the rewards that come through following the commandments. However, the goal is to eventually reach the level where one serves G‑d in a purely altruistic manner.

And the same would apply to charity. The essential mitzvah is to give charity because this is what G‑d commanded. Will it make you feel good? Will it bring about tremendous reward? Of course! In fact, the Talmud says that one is even allowed to say, “I am giving charity in order that my son should be healed.” After all, the most important thing is that the deed should be done. Nonetheless, it is best when the mitzvah is done lishmah.

Paradoxically, however, with regards to charity, the Rebbe explains that it must be given with feeling. It is not enough to simply give the dollar because that is what G‑d commanded; we are also commanded to empathize with our fellow’s plight and genuinely desire to be of assistance. And this feeling, too, must emanate from our desire to follow G‑d’s instructions.

Yours truly,
Rabbi Yisroel Cotlar

Iyar 14, 5774 · May 14, 2014

ESSAY: Disguised Blessings

By Rochel Holzkenner

The author with her daughter, Chaya Mushka of blessed memory.

My friend Aviva came to visit Chaya Mushka and me in the hospital. Just four weeks earlier my daughter was diagnosed with Trisomy 18, a chromosomal disorder. Only five to ten percent of babies with this condition survive their first year.

“I just don’t understand why this would happen to you,” she said to me. We sat facing one another in the NICU. I held Chaya Mushka and kicked the rocking chair into motion. “You and Sholom Meir seem to be such good people . . .”

“But what if we were chosen to host her? What if her soul selected us as her parents for its short mission on earth, then to return ‘home,’ unscathed and pristine?” The words slipped from my lips, still unprocessed: “What if she’s our blessing?”

“But if you don’t listen to Me,” says G‑d, “I will direct upon you panic, inflammation, fever, disease and anguish. You will sow your seed in vain, and [if it does sprout,] your enemies will eat it . . .” (Leviticus 26:14,16).


And that’s not it. The Torah continues with close to another thirty verses filled with promises of retribution—they’re actually difficult to read.

Surprisingly, Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi makes the following comment about the Torah’s harsh words: “In truth, they are nothing but blessings!”


He then proceeds to explain many of the verses as blessings. For example, “Ten women will bake bread in one oven” (ibid. verse 26). In its simplest sense, this verse is referring to the extreme poverty that will afflict us if we abandon G‑d’s ways. But Rabbi Schneur Zalman interprets the verse as follows: We will meditate on the oneness of G‑d (the oven of “one”) with such intensity, that all our ten soul-powers will be consumed with a fiery love for Him. Then our Torah study (Torah is often referred to in the Scriptures as “bread”) will “bake” and marinate in this love.

Rabbi Schneur Zalman uncovers the hidden blessings hidden behind the guise of misfortune


Rabbi Schneur Zalman uncovers the hidden blessings hidden behind the guise of misfortune. To him, it was obvious and apparent that the curses must be taken beyond face value.

Interestingly, Rabbi Schneur Zalman wasn’t the first person to see through apparently unkind wording. The Talmud (Moed Katan 9a) tells us the story of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, famed Mishnaic sage and author of the Zohar, who sent his son Elazar to receive blessings from two of his students, Rabbi Yonatan and Rabbi Yehudah. But instead of hearing from them blessings, he heard curses. “May it be G‑d’s will that you will sow and not reap!” they proclaimed, and then continued with a litany of unpleasant wishes.

An astonished Elazar repeated to his father the rabbis’ curses.

“Curses?” responded Rabbi Shimon. “Those were all blessings!

“‘You will sow and not reap’ means that you will have children and they will not die . . .” And Rabbi Shimon proceeded to decode all the “curses,” patiently explaining to his son the blessings inherent within them.

It was certainly quite clever for Rabbi Shimon to decode the riddles and expose the blessings. But why did the sages speak in such a roundabout way? Why didn’t they bless him in language that he could understand?

Rabbi Schneur Zalman’s grandson, Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Lubavitch, asks just this question. He concludes that the sages’ blessings were of such a lofty and sublime nature that they couldn’t be expressed directly. They had to go through the medium of “bad” before they could be exposed as good.

If G‑d is good and He orchestrates our lives with purpose and meaning, then there can be only two types of experiences that He generates: a) good things that we perceive as good; b) good things that we perceive as bad.

And here’s the part that seems completely counterintuitive (or maybe not): the good that’s perceived as bad is in fact a more potent good.1

Compare your personal journal to your published autobiography. The autobiography probably makes a lot more sense to an audience of readers. But your journal is so raw and genuine, so you.

When G‑d communicates with us from a place closer to His essence, we don’t understand Him clearly. Was that a hug? ’Cause it felt like a slap in the face . . .

Resilient people don’t let frustration and disappointment erode their belief


In fact, the Talmud (Yoma 23a) tells us that people who are able to remain happy despite their suffering will merit to see G‑d in His full glory during the messianic era. These resilient people don’t let frustration and disappointment erode their belief that everything that comes from G‑d is good. Since they embrace all of G‑d—the part they understand, and the part they so don’t—they eventually experience the totality of G‑d’s light. They’ve proven that they can embrace even the most raw and intense parts of G‑d.

So, how do we expose the sweet good that’s entangled in a bad wrap? The chassidic masters teach that by merely trusting that there is a potent kernel of good hidden in the pain, we begin to disassemble the screen that veils it.

“Why did this happen to me?” There are two ways to ask this same question. One is rhetorical, a proclamation: “This is wrong and shouldn’t have happened to me.” The second is authentic: “I wonder why this is happening to me. How can this be good for me?” And just exploring the possibility of good draws it to the surface.

To ask the second type of question, we need to train ourselves to look through the external trappings of an experience and capture its depth.

Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai was clearly a man of unparalleled depth. He authored the Zohar, the primary book of Jewish mysticism. That’s why it was so natural for him to see the curse as a blessing. He didn’t need to reconcile the shell of the words with their inner meaning—to him the shell was completely transparent.

What we perceive as bad is in truth the higher expression of G‑d’s kindness


Rabbi Schneur Zalman authored the Tanya, the primary work of chassidic philosophy. Like Rabbi Shimon, he saw everything with profundity, plumbing the depths of any notion. That’s why Rabbi Schneur Zalman read the verses of admonition and immediately entered into their innermost understanding, where all is good, and where what we perceive as bad is in truth the higher expression of G‑d’s kindness. Like Rabbi Shimon, he didn’t have to train himself to see bad as good; to him it was as clear as the sun is bright.

Studying chassidic teachings, the depth of the Torah’s wisdom, trains our eyes with incredible depth perception, and sensitizes us to see the good even when we’re disappointed.2

And nevertheless, let’s bless each other that we all be recipients of only good—and good that we perceive as good!

Iyar 13, 5774 · May 13, 2014

PARENTING: 4 Steps to a Great Marriage

By Sarah Chana Radcliffe

Today, lasting marriage is increasingly rare; approximately 50% of secular marriages end in divorce. While no one should have to suffer in an abusive or painful relationship,

Lasting marriage is increasingly rare

divorce was never meant to be the solution to all marital problems. On the contrary, in a society that truly values marriage, institutions and individuals work hard to support couples, realizing that lasting unions give both adults and children the emotional and physical stability that is so essential to wellbeing.

Indeed, Jews have always placed a very high value on marriage and family life, living within communities that actively support, encourage and facilitate the building of “faithful homes” that together make up a unified people. To a large extent, traditional Jewish couples are still succeeding—against the challenging backdrop of an unsupportive culture—in making their marriages work. This isn’t because they find marriage easier than other people do; they don’t. Rather, it is because their commitment to the institution—their appreciation of its spiritual, social, emotional and physical benefits—gives them the impetus they need to struggle through its inevitable challenges.

Whether you’re ready to throw in the towel or just want to improve your marriage, here are four practical perspectives that can help your marriage survive and thrive:

1) Acceptance and Gratitude

Maintaining a healthy, lifelong union requires acceptance, compassion, forgiveness and appreciation. Yes, you must work toward positive change, but you must also know when to let an issue go, when to give up the struggle and the desire to control, and accept what is. Along the way, you have to accept your own feelings of disappointment. Instead of focusing on what’s missing, it will help if you can reframe what you have in order to appreciate it more. A spouse’s socks on the floor is sure proof that you indeed have a spouse; instead of being fuel for a fight, it can be a reminder of blessing and good fortune.

2) Understanding and Accepting the Opposite Gender

Yes, I’m going to paint in broad brushstrokes here. There will always be plenty of exceptions, but there are certain gender differences that are worth noting.

Men often have a shorter list of complaints than their wives do. Essentially, men just want their wives to be happy. They want to feel that their wives respect and admire them—way beyond the first year of marriage. They need their wives to communicate appreciation and warmth. When women are cold, critical and miserable, men feel like failures and start to withdraw. Men are far more sensitive to rejection than their wives might imagine, because they often fail to express their feelings in words. Instead, they may spend less time at home and say less. Or they may become more aggressive and irritable.

There are certain gender differences that are worth noting


Women tend to start off sweet but then, due to disappointment, hurt and endless giving, find they have little desire or energy for indirect marital strategies. Instead they begin to make quick, direct attacks, getting straight to the point without taking time to strategize or soften communication. Or, if that fails, they fall into silent, angry depression.

To break this attack/withdraw pattern, it’s important to see a marriage not as a win-lose situation, but as a win-win (or a lose-lose). For example, while it’s true that most men won’t look around the house and just figure out what needs to be done, the majority will certainly be willing to help out when simply asked clearly to do so. Instead of feeling resentful that he is only “helping,” the wife can choose to accept the “captain-of-the-ship” role in household management and delegate tasks to her good-hearted, willing life partner. For women especially, it helps to have a good friend, mentor, or therapist who supports this way of thinking.

3) Communication

I’m surprised when I hear people say that they have basically given up on trying to have a good marriage, and they are instead focused on raising their children. If anything, your relationship with your spouse takes priority over your relationship with your children. Children are more perceptive than you may think, and they will learn how to act by watching how you and your spouse interact with each other.

The good news is that good parenting techniques are really just excellent communication strategies. So, if you are careful to praise your kids generously, do the same for your spouse. If you minimize correction, criticism and complaints with your kids, do the same with your life partner. If you use “teaching moments” to make important points with children, then never negotiate with your spouse in times of anger. If you make it a point to show interest and understanding when your kids are speaking, do the same for your spouse. This is not to say that your spouse is just another “child,” but rather, apply the communication skills you have already cultivated.

4) Meeting Your Own Needs

You are responsible for the quality of your life—not your spouse. Bring contentment and fulfillment to your daily existence by strengthening your relationship with G‑d,

Let’s invest ourselves fully enough to actually succeed

learning powerful stress-management techniques, nurturing a circle of healthy personal relationships, finding meaningful and satisfying work, exercising, learning, growing emotionally, contributing to your community, and so on. The better you are at making your own life successful, the easier it will be to enjoy your marriage as the wonderful gift that it is meant to be.

Since we believe that marriage is inherently valuable, necessary, healthy and good for all concerned, let’s invest ourselves fully enough to actually succeed at it. This has always been the Jewish way, and so many of us and our children have reaped the benefits of the secure embrace of family life.


Iyar 13, 5774 · May 13, 2014

VOICES: A Big Gray Lump Called Pain

By Eve

There’s a big gray lump called Pain living in my heart.

I had initially refused to let him in when he first jumped in that direction, so he climbed up to my brain and messed around there, and that was pretty dangerous. He was red-hot and fiery, and he burned some pretty vital allies of mine, like logic and reason, and there was no way I could outwit him. I tried ignoring him, but it was impossible to escape his heat. He cackled gleefully as I got burned, and I’m pretty sure I burned others, too. I tried beating him, but he kept coming out on top. I then tried starving him, drowning him, soothing him, confusing him, distracting him and shouting at him, but every time, this Pain won.

I had initially refused to let him in

I realized I wouldn’t be able to rid myself of him, so, reckoning he’d be safer in my heart than in my mind, I let him back down.

But though I’d accepted the Pain in my heart, I didn’t like him there at all.

At least, however, with my brain back in session, I was able to cool his fires, and eventually he ceased to be a red-hot monster, and he morphed into a big gray lump.

A big gray lump called Pain. And I don’t like him.

His presence bothers me. He nudges me, trying to make me sad. His presence teases me. He nudges me, trying to make me mad. He follows me everywhere I go, doing his best to drain me. I refuse to let him overtake me, but the reality is that there isn’t enough room for both of us, and I’m starting to choke.

Since ignoring him didn’t work, I attempted the opposite and became obsessed with trying to talk him to death. But that didn’t succeed either. Whether he liked the negative attention or whether it diminished him slightly, I’ll never know, because he’s still around and as bullying as ever. He’s a quiet bully, but a bully nonetheless.

Some days he takes up less space than others. But since lately nobody has seen him, they all think he’s entirely dead. Sometimes, the more he pushes me, the brighter I smile. And the people who have met him in the past sigh in relief that he’s long gone. And sometimes that makes me feel a bit frustrated, but other times that delights me. It’s a victory of sorts.

Usually, he’s predictable in when he’s going to speak up loudly. Certain languages, scents and words draw him out quickly. He shoots out from where he’s crouching and, his smirk reverberating with my heartbeat, he grabs my heart. He grabs it so suddenly and so tightly that in order to breathe, I must immediately apply intense mental focus to peel his fingers off one by one and put him back in his place. I can accomplish this only when I am calm.

Once, I would freeze in fear, rapidly breathing shallow frightened breaths while vehemently denying his existence. But that would only make him squeeze harder, as if to prove that he was real. So, now I know to acknowledge his appearance and just surely and steadily remove myself from his clutches.

Yes, I am truly the master of this big gray lump called Pain.

He cannot rule me; I am not my pain. Yes, he is in me, but I am the master.

And as master, I determine that I may as well benefit from this Pain that’s not leaving. Maybe I can climb higher in life by stepping on him. This big gray lump called Pain can give me a tremendous boost if I topple him to the side and then jump right on him with confidence.

So I take a deep breath and thank

I take a deep breath and thank him daily

him daily for the fires he’s scoured me with, because of the powerful cleansing that’s given me. I recognize and humbly appreciate that all the crushing he’s doing to me is squeezing out my best self that’s hidden quite deep inside me. I have been deflated from his stabbing, and now have room for many others and much more in my life. I am utilizing my Pain to create such tremendous positive change that the big gray lump living in my heart deserves a second name. I call him “Good Pain.”

And I share that with a few people close to me. And they’re all really relieved now, because they had known that the Pain hadn’t left before—that type of Pain stays for a while!—but now that I revealed the whole process and I said it’s good, they can relax and even rejoice.

And I rejoice with them, and I smile with pleasure and gratitude at how far I’ve risen, but no matter what I do, no matter how hard I try, deep inside, all the time, the big gray lump called Pain lives on.

And that’s okay. That’s okay because I was never promised a life without Pain; I was only assured that G‑d would give me the tools to rise above him.



ETHICS OF OUR FATHERS: Humility: Two Definitions (Chapter 4)

Iyar 14, 5774 * May 14, 2014

E T H I C S   O F   O U R   F A T H E R S

Humility: Two Definitions

Be humble before every man

– Ethics of the Fathers, 4:10

                        *      *      *

Let’s be realistic.

Is there no one out there who is dumber, uglier or more selfish than yourself?  Okay, discount the few dozen degrees of inferiority that are due to your ego-inflated self-perception. Still, is there no one on earth who is less worthy than you?

So what does it mean to “be humble before every man”? Is the Mishnah telling us that it is our moral duty to underrate ourselves?

To do so would be a sinful waste of our G-d-given talents, which can never be optimally realized unless we are aware and appreciative of what we have been given and what we have accomplished. In the words of Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak of Lubavitch:  “Just as it is imperative that a person recognize his own shortcomings, it is no less crucial that he recognize his advantages and strengths.”

How, then, does a person make a true evaluation of himself, for the worse and for the better, and at the same time experience a genuine feeling of humility before every other individual?

The Larger Picture

Chassidic teaching offers two approaches to develop a true feeling of humility toward someone whose character or behavior is obviously inferior to one’s own:  1) the “mutual dependency” approach and 2) the “relative expectation” approach.

The first approach begins with the recognition that we are all one, that together we comprise a single organism whose various cells, limbs and organs complement and complete one another.  A body includes both the sophisticated brain and the “crass” functional foot; but, ultimately, the brain is dependent on the foot just as the foot is dependent on the brain.  If the foot is indebted to the brain for its vitality and direction, the brain is dependent on the foot to realize many of its goals.

The humble man looks at the larger picture rather than the particulars, at the unified purpose of life on earth rather than only at his function within this purpose.  No matter how lofty his own role may seem in relation to his fellow’s, he is grossly limited without him.  The knowledge that his own life’s work is incomplete without his fellow’s contribution will arouse feelings of humility and indebtedness toward his fellow: he recognizes that even the coarsest “limb” of the mutual body fulfills a deficiency in himself.

Defining Humility

In this approach, humility is not equated with a sense of inferiority. Rather, it stems from a feeling of equality and mutual need. In becoming humble, a person first realizes that any greater measure of intelligence, refinement, spiritual sensitivity, etc., that he may divine in himself in relation to his fellow is nothing to feel superior about: these are only the tools that have been granted him for his individual role. He also recognizes the limitations of his own accomplishments, and the manner in which they are fulfilled and perfected by the “body’s” other organs and limbs. So he is humbled by the ability of his inferior fellow to extend and apply their shared mission on earth to areas that lie beyond his individual reach.

The second approach, however, defines “humility” in the more commonplace sense – as a feeling of inferiority in relation to one’s fellow.

How is this truly and truthfully achieved in relation to every man?  By conducting a thorough evaluation and critique of his own moral and spiritual standing.  In doing so, one is certain to find areas where he has failed to prove equal to what is expected of him. That his fellow may be guilty of the same or worse is irrelevant: concerning his fellow’s behavior he is in no position to judge.  “Do not judge your fellow until you are in his place” say our sages, for you have no way of knowing how his nature, his background, and the circumstances surrounding any given deed may have influenced his behavior. However, regarding your own behavior you are “in his (i.e., your own) place” and in a position to know that, despite all the excuses and justifications you may have, you could have done better.

With such an approach, a person will “be humble before every man” in the most literal sense of the term, perceiving his every fellow as superior to himself.

Fighting Fire With Fire

Which approach to take?  On the whole, the Torah tells us to accentuate the positive in ourselves.  True, soul-searching and self-critique are important, for a person must never delude himself.  However, excessive dwelling on one’s shortcomings and failures leads to a down-spiraling vortex of depression, despair and inertia, resulting in the very opposite of constructive action.

So, generally speaking, the precept “Be humble before every man” should be employed in the first manner outlined above: not by disparaging oneself in relation to another person, but by recognizing the indispensability of each of one’s fellows to the completeness of one’s own attainments.

But there is also a time and place for the second approach.  The soul of man is a “spark of G-dliness,” inherently and utterly good; yet man must also contend with the egocentric drives of his “animal soul.”  Physical life is basically the struggle between these two selves, between the divine-seeking G-dly self and the material-seeking mundane self.

In the course of this struggle, a person may encounter a lack in his character that proves especially resistant to all his efforts.  He may find this negative trait reinforced by a sense that “this is the way it is, there is nothing to be done” – a `humility’ and a self-depreciating despair that actually stem from the ego-driven arrogance of his animal self.

In such a case, one must “fight fire with fire” and administer a dose of its own medicine to his animal soul.  He must humble himself by contemplating the lowliness of his animal nature, and that his compliance with its drives and arguments renders him inferior to even the lowliest of men.

This is the constructive side to the second approach, to humility as sense of inferiority.  For at times, this is the only way for a person to break the arrogant `humility’ of his animal self and proceed with the lifelong quest for self-refinement and self-perfection.

                    – – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –

Introductory reading to Ethics of the Fathers:

All Israel has a share in the World to Come, as is stated: “And your people are all righteous; they shall inherit the land forever. They are the shoot of My planting, the work of My hands, in which I take pride.”
(Sanhedrin, 11:1)

Chapter Four

1.  Ben Zoma would say: Who is wise? One who learns from every man. As is stated: “From all my teachers I have grown wise, for Your testimonials are my meditation.”

Who is strong? One who overpowers his inclinations. As is stated, “Better one who is slow to anger than one with might, one who rules his spirit than the captor of a city.”

Who is rich? One who is satisfied with his lot.  As is stated:  “If you eat of toil of your hands, fortunate are you, and good is to you” ; “fortunate are you” in this world, “and good is to you”—in the World to Come.

Who is honorable, one who honors his fellows. As is stated: “For to those who honor me, I accord honor; those who scorn me shall be demeaned.”

2.  Ben Azzai would say: Run to pursue a minor mitzvah, and flee from a transgression. For a mitzvah brings another mitzvah, and a transgression brings another transgression. For the reward of a mitzvah is a mitzvah, and the reward of transgression is transgression.

3.  He would also say: Do not scorn any man, and do not discount anything. For there is no man who has not his hour, and no thing that has not its place.

4.  Rabbi Levitas of Yavneh would say: Be very, very humble, for the hope of mortal man is worms.

Rabbi Yochanan the son of Berokah would say: Whoever desecrates the Divine Name covertly, is punished in public. Regarding the desecration of the Name, the malicious and the merely negligent are one and the same.

5.  Rabbi Ishmael the son of Rabbi Yossei would say: One who learns Torah in order to teach, is given the opportunity to learn and teach. One who learns in order to do, is given the opportunity to learn, teach, observe and do.

Rabbi Tzaddok would say: Do not separate yourself from the community. Do not act as a counselor-at-law.  Do not make the Torah a crown to magnify yourself with, or a spade with which to dig. So would Hillel say: one who make personal use of the crown of Torah shall perish. Hence, one who benefits himself from the words of Torah, removes his life from the world.

6.  Rabbi Yossei would say: Whoever honors the Torah, is himself honored by the people; whoever degrades the Torah, is himself degraded by the people.

7.  His son, Rabbi Ishmael would say: One who refrains from serving as a judge avoids hatred, thievery and false oaths. One who frivolously hands down rulings is a fool, wicked  and arrogant.

8.  He would also say: Do not judge alone, for there is none qualified to judge alone, only the One. And do not say, “You must accept my view,” for this is their [the majority’s] right, not yours.

9.  Rabbi Jonathan would say: Whoever fulfills the Torah in poverty, will ultimately fulfill it in wealth; and whoever neglects the Torah in wealth, will ultimately neglect it in poverty.

10.  Rabbi Meir would say: Engage minimally in business, and occupy yourself with Torah. Be humble before every man. If you neglect the Torah, there will be many more causes for neglect before you ; if you toil much in Torah, there is much reward to give to you.

11.  Rabbi Eliezer the son of Yaakov would say: He who fulfills one mitzvah, acquires for himself one advocate; he who commits one transgression, acquires against himself one accuser. Repentance and good deeds are as a shield against retribution.

Rabbi Yochanan the Sandal-Maker would say: Every gathering that is for the sake of Heaven, will endure; that is not for the sake of Heaven, will not endure.

12.  Rabbi Eliezer the son of Shamua would say: The dignity of your student should be as precious to you as your own; the dignity of your colleague, as your awe of your master; and your awe of your master as your awe of Heaven.

13.  Rabbi Judah would say: Be careful with your studies, for an error of learning  is tantamount to a willful transgression.

Rabbi Shimon would say: There are three crowns–the crown of Torah, the crown of priesthood and the crown of sovereignty–but the crown of good name surmounts them all.

14.  Rabbi Nehora’i would say: Exile yourself to a place of Torah; do not say that it will come after you, that your colleagues will help you retain it. Rely not on your own understanding.

15.  Rabbi Yannai would say: We have no comprehension of the tranquility of the wicked, nor of the suffering of the righteous.

Rabbi Matya the son of Charash would say: Be first to greet every man. Be a tail to lions, rather than a head to foxes.

16.  Rabbi Yaakov would say: This world is comparable to the antechamber before the World to Come.  Prepare yourself in the  antechamber, so that you may enter the banquet hall.

17.  He would also say: A single moment of repentance and good deeds in this world is greater than all of the World to Come.  And a single moment of bliss in the World to Come is greater than all of the present world.

18.  Rabbi Shimon the son of Elazar would say: Do not appease your friend at the height of his anger; do not comfort him while his dead still lies before him; do not ask him about his vow the moment he makes it ; and do not endeavor to see him at the time of his degradation.

19.  Samuel the Small would say: “When your enemy falls, do not rejoice; when he stumbles, let your heart not be gladdened. Lest G-d see, and it will displeasing in His eyes, and He will turn His wrath from him [to you]”

20.  Elisha the son of Avuyah would say: One who learns Torah in his childhood, what is this comparable to? To ink inscribed on fresh paper. One who learns Torah in his old age, what is this comparable to? To ink inscribed on erased paper.

Rabbi Yossei the son of Judah of Kfar HaBavli would say: One who learns Torah from youngsters, whom is he comparable to? To one who eats unripe grapes and drinks [unfermented] wine from the press. One who learns Torah from the old, whom is he comparable to? To one who eats ripened grapes and drinks aged wine.

Said Rabbi Meir: Look not at the vessel, but at what it contains. There are new vessels that are filled with old wine, and old vessels that do not even contain new wine.

21.  Rabbi Elazar HaKapor would say: Envy, lust and honor drive a man from the world.

22.  He would also say: Those who are born will die, and the dead will live. The living will be judged, to learn, to teach and to comprehend that He is G-d, He is the former, He is the creator, He is the comprehender, He is the judge, He is the witness, he is the plaintiff, and He will judge. Blessed is He, for before Him there is no wrong, no forgetting, no favoritism, and no taking of bribes; know, that everything is according to the reckoning. Let not your heart convince you that the grave is your escape; for against your will you are formed, against your will you are born, against your will you live, against your will you die, and against your will you are destined to give a judgement and accounting before the king, king of all kings, the Holy One, blessed be He.

Studied at the conclusion of each lesson of the Ethics:

Rabbi Chananiah the son of Akashiah would say: G-d desired to merit the people of Israel; therefore, He gave them Torah and mitzvot in abundance. As is stated, “G-d desired, for sake of his righteousness, that Torah be magnified and made glorious.”
(Makot, 3:16)




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