Emor and the Challenges of Our Past

Emor and the Challenges of Our Past Rabbi’s Note: The Torah portion this week represents my Bar Mitzvah portion. What follows is a revised version of my remarks this past Monday; during the Sisterhood program featuring renown author and activist Letty Cottin Pogrebin. When I was old enough and more engaged about the state of

On Israel’s Birthday

Throughout the world, Israel continues to be vilified as the enemy of humanity; the nation where apartheid, discrimination and the most egregious human rights abuses are manifested in the most vile form. On a daily basis, we hear the voices emanating from the UN Human Rights Council; supporting yet another baseless resolution against...

Tazria/ Metzora: The Trauma of Feeling Isolated

Were I to rank the Torah readings in terms of interest and ‘first glance relevancy’; this week’s double portion of Tazria and Metzora would rank near the bottom. Reading about a skin disease in all its grotesque and graphic details, would not be my initial idea of inspiring scripture. Follow up with an equally grotesque...

Torah Portion Shmini: Prominence and Responsibility

Torah Portion Shmini: Prominence and Responsibility After the tragic deaths of Nadav and Avihu: Through those near to Me I show Myself holy, And gain glory before all the people Leviticus 10:3 This week we read about Nadav and Avihu; two sons of Aaron tragically killed during a moment of professional carelessness and irresponsibility. The...

The Magnificent Humbling Aspect of Passover

From the time I was a teenager, I led my family’s Seder. My relatives were no different from most: Let’s move on so we can eat. Were I a super idealist, I would argue that my relatives were not disinterested; they were just ashamed to admit how little they understood about the Haggadah. I would

Shabbat Hagadol and our Passover Pledge

Shabbat Hagadol and our Passover Pledge Introductory Note: The following is my annual Passover message which will be broadcast on Public Access TV of Great Neck. Because many of you are out of PATV range, I wanted to share the message in this column. My broadcast will air throughout the Passover holiday. This Shabbat we