Monday, May 25, 2020

Divrei Torah

Thousands Expected at Dirshu Siyum HaShas at Binyanei Haumah Convention Center in Yerushalayim

“What could be more moving than having thousands of lomdei Dirshu sitting together in one room, taking the last test on Shas and, immediately upon completing the test, entering the main hall of the Convention Center to celebrate their accomplishments with klal Yisrael led by gedolei Yisrael?” exclaimed Rabbi Shlomo


Dinah in a Box

Yaakov hurriedly spirits his camp to safety across the Yabok river to protect them from Esav’s murderous gang. The Torah carefully delineates the transport of his four wives and his 11 children—his entire entourage—as well as all of his possessions. Yet, no mention of his lone daughter is included, prompting the midrash to


From Flight to Fight

Frightening news about shootings in synagogues throughout the world has made many of us wonder: How do we protect ourselves and our families? While this question feels new, it is also very old; so often through the centuries of our exile we have found ourselves at the mercy of cruel rulers, merciless neighbors and marauding mobs.


Dealing With Anxiety

Once again, we read in Parshat Vayishlach how one of our forefathers, Jacob, had his faith put to the test. He was about to face the wrath of his brother, Esav, who was advancing toward him with a small army. The fate of his family and his life was at stake. The verse described that Jacob was “exceedingly frightened” (32:8) to


Good Investment Strategy

A few years ago I visited someone to introduce him to our yeshiva for adults and ask for his support. He had never heard anything like it; honestly, he was impressed. He said he liked our unique approach that gives access to in-depth Torah learning and provides real skills to those who didn’t acquire that knowledge earlier in


Being Non-Jew’gmental

Anticipating a heated and fierce confrontation with his big brother Esav, surprisingly, the Torah tells us that Yaakov “became extremely afraid” (Bereishit 32:8). Indeed, he was “bugging out”; he was terrified. Why was he so afraid of Esav? The Da’at Zekeinim gives two explanations: 1) Either he was afraid that Esav


Kinyan Torah Learners: The Stars of the Dirshu Torah Revolution

As Dirshu’s World Siyum approaches, it is important to highlight the ultimate heroes of the Siyum HaShas, those lomdei Torah who learn the daf, chazer the daf and take monthly tests on 30 blatt as part of the Dirshu Kinyan Torah program. Some take tests on Gemara with Rashi, others add Tosafos. No matter what is going on


The Value of a ‘Work Ethic’

Prior to fleeing his murderous brother, Yaakov’s life was peaceful and serene. He reveled in the “tents” of study exploring God’s word and pondering the deeper meaning of life. However, life had other plans in store for this quiet scholar. Hurriedly traveling to his mother’s homeland, Yaakov is quickly put to work by his


If or When?

Yaakov’s reaction to God’s revelation at the beginning of Parshat Vayeitzei is rather surprising. Although God had promised to watch over him and take care of all his needs, Yaakov responds with what appears to be a selfish promise — accepting Hashem as his God, on the condition that God will take good care of him.


A True Value

In 2017, a painting by Leonardo Da Vinci known as “Salvator Mundi” went on auction at Christie’s in New York. The winning bid, made by a Saudi prince, was $450 million. Incredible! Someone was willing to pay half a billion dollars for a rare painting.

In Parshat Vayeitzei, we also find a


Eisav’s Folly

Legend has it that 400 years ago, local native Americans relinquished ownership over the Island of “Manhattes” for the modern equivalent of about $1,000. In the public imagination, the trade of Manhattan for trinkets undoubtedly ranks as the worst deal in modern history. Even if this legend is true, this reckless exchange


The Land Waits For Her People

Famine: food is scarce, the sheep have nowhere to graze, what does one do?

Yitzchak decides to follow his father’s footsteps, do his basic hishtadlut (exertion, action) and move to a different country. At this point, God tells him unequivocally to stay in Eretz Yisrael and promises him that he