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Friday, October 30, 2020
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Divrei Torah

Fallen Monuments and Modern Hubris

During the recent protests, society has begun to face important dilemmas regarding monuments that commemorate national heroes whose lifestyles were discrepant with current norms of racial equality. Some monuments celebrate people or organizations directly involved in discriminatory policies—such as the monuments that celebrate

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Corona Diary #10: The Challenges of ‘Phase Two’

Many countries around the world have navigated the first phase of the corona crisis, slowly resuming their “routines” after months in quarantine. This shift affords welcome relief, renewed hope and great expectations for a “return to normal.” Israeli society has experienced this “return to normal” for the past few weeks but we

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Maintaining the Strength of Our Convictions

When one of my daughters was four years old, she was looking out the front window and shouted in delight, “Daddy! Look! The chocolate truck is here!” I looked out the window and saw a UPS truck. To her, a brown truck was…the chocolate truck! People can look at the same thing and differ in their interpretation of it.

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To ‘Sea’ Deeper

What does it mean to “see”? In common vernacular, when people say “I see,” they don’t usually mean to say “I see what is right in front of me”; rather, they mean to say “I understand.” Meaning, based on what I’ve seen or heard, I have gathered information and achieved a deeper level of understanding.

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God’s Numbers Game

Rashi, in this week’s parsha, quotes the midrash that it really should have taken the spies double the time to travel the length and width of Eretz Yisrael, but because God knew they would stumble with slandering the land, God miraculously caused the road to shrink. The question may be asked that God could have reduced the travels to less

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Getting It Right the Second Time Around

There are times in life when we make mistakes. Sometimes these mistakes are grievous or even sinful. When we get a chance to make them right we have to take advantage and correct ourselves. This is one of the lessons we can learn from this week’s parsha of Shelach and its haftarah from Yehoshua.

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Dream Amelioration via Zoom

Many centuries before the Austrian physician Sigmund Freud (1856-1939) studied dreams, their meaning for and impact on the individual, the Sages of the Talmud (Berachot 55b) focused on dreams. In fact, dreams already play a prominent role in the Bible; in connection with biblical dreams, one immediately thinks of Joseph, Pharaoh,

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Spying on Your Inner Thoughts

What the meraglim can teach us about cognitive therapy.

Cognitive therapy has given therapists all over the world the ability to help release people from anxiety, depression, anger, low self-esteem and much more. One of the benefits of cognitive therapy is that it often achieves results more quickly

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Yeshiva Tuition and the Coronavirus

To our great sadness, the societal shutdown due to the coronavirus also closed yeshivos. The government rightly insisted that all schools cease in-class teaching. Schools transitioned to remote learning for abbreviated hours, with parents taking a greater role in watching their children and ensuring they join the class. With shorter hours

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Maintaining the Excitement of Connecting With Hashem

About a year ago I was standing next to two people shmoozing after davening in shul. One person said to his friend, “The rabbi is going away this week for the summer.” The other fellow responded, “Yeah, now we can daven Shacharis in 30 minutes since the rabbi isn’t here to slow us down.” They were talking in a joking-type banter,

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A Religious Guide to Social Equality

Over the past three months, the coronavirus medical crisis has induced a worldwide upheaval. The social protests in the U.S. surrounding the death of George Floyd has launched a social upheaval as we consider the importance of racial equality. The “basics” of our response have already been voiced and appear to enjoy universal consensus:

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Positive Power

“Life is great!” is usually not the typical response we are used to hearing. More often than not, we are usually met with a simple “Baruch Hashem,” or “I’m hanging in,” “not bad,” and if we’re lucky, “things are OK.” It’s normal to be caught up in the things that aren’t going the way we would like them to be. The

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