When the Torah eulogizes Moses, it mentions the breaking of the Tablets as one of his greatest virtues. Doesn’t that seem ludicrous?
The Jewish people have traditions dating back thousands of years which outline the specific form and format of our traditions. What if archeologists find contradictory evidence? Do we change our rituals or do we not?
Abraham planted cedars in Beer-Sheba, Jacob transplanted them to Egypt, and the Israelites took them along into the desert.
Why were we dragging cedars for four-hundred years? And what does it tell us about “being Jewish at heart”?
People are often quick to shrug off communal responsibility. Even Moses himself, when instructed to redeem the People of Israel, made every effort to avoid the mission.
What does Jewish tradition say about this attitude? Is communal work really for everyone?
Some religious leaders speak derogatorily about others. How did G-d respond to such behavior? What did Rabbi Eliezer do when faced with a similar situation? What did the Rebbe say?
The Torah contains nine ‘songs.’ The Song of Moses, the Song of David, the Song of Miriam, and so on. Jewish tradition seems to cherish the songs of the women. Why so?
Throughout Jewish history, the rabbis have enacted takanot, or Rabbinic ordinances, to safeguard Jewish observance. Shabbat begins at sundown? The sages extend it by eighteen minutes. The evening Shema must be recited by sunrise? The rabbis said midnight.
Where did they learn this behavior? Why are the Torah’s commands not enough?
Until two hundred years ago, eighty percent of the world’s population was illiterate. The statistic among the Jewish population was the opposite: Eighty percent could read and write. How can we explain the difference? Insight into the age-old Jewish approach to education.
When Pharaoh suggested to drown the newborns, what were his advisors to do? Object and face the consequences, or agree and work with the circumstances?
When faced with a moral dilemma, do you make do with the situation or take a principled stand?
A fascinating lesson from Bilaam, Job and Jethro.