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Weekly Divrei Torah   
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Shabbat Forshpeis    A Taste of Torah in Honor of Shabbat


This Weeks Divrei Torah


PARSHAT VA-ERA
IN THE END, THE FACE OF TRUTH ALWAYS EMERGES
JANUARY 20-21, 2012 / 26 TEVET 5772


If the Egyptian magicians did not have godly
powers, how were they able to perform miraculous
feats and match Moshe (Moses) act for act by
duplicating the first two plagues? A
closer look at the text reveals


PARSHAT SHEMOT
TRUE HEROES ARE OFTEN KNOWN ONLY TO GOD
JANUARY 13-14, 2012 / 19 TEVET 5772


Who were the midwives that were asked
by Pharaoh to kill the newborn
Jewish males? (Exodus 1:15, 16)
Their identity is critical because


PARSHAT VA-YECHI
ALTHOUGH DIFFICULT, OPENNESS
IS THE KEY TO TRUE UNDERSTANDING
JANUARY 6-7, 2012 / 12 TEVET 5772


Describing the brothers' feelings after the


PARSHAT VAYIGASH
THE LESSONS OF GOSHEN
DECEMBER 30-31, 2011 / 5 TEVET 5772


What makes Yosef (Joseph) so keen on settling his
families in a suburb of Egypt-a place called Goshen?


PARSHAT MIKETZ
REAL COURAGE IS ACTING EVEN WHEN YOU ARE
UNSURE OF THE OUTCOME
DECEMBER 24, 2011 / 5TH DAY OF CHANUKAH- 28 KISLEV 5772


In this week's portion, Yaakov (Jacob) hesitates
to allow Binyamin (Benjamin) his youngest child,


PARSHAT VA-YESHEV
JACOB'S DESIRE TO CHANGE THE FAMILY DESTINY
DECEMBER 16-17, 2011 / 21 KISLEV 5772


After Joseph's two dreams his siblings
are naturally upset - believing that


PARSHAT VAYISHLACH
THE DUAL IMPORTANCE OF BOTH
THE SPIRITUAL AND THE PHYSICAL
CHALLENGE
DECEMBER 9-10, 2011 / 14 KISLEV 5772


One of the most powerful images in the Torah is that of
Yaakov (Jacob) struggling with a mysterious being (ish)
before his anxiously a waited meeting with his
brother Esav (Esau). (Genesis 32:25)


PARSHAT VAYETZE
EVERY RELATIONSHIP CONTAINS ELEMENTS
OF SURPRISE
DECEMBER 2-3 2011 / 7 KISLEV 5772


How is it possible that Yaakov
(Jacob) didn't know that he


PARSHAT TOLDOT
THE REPAIR OF PARENTS' MISSTEPS CAN
OFTEN BE DONE THROUGH THEIR CHILDREN
NOVEMBER 25-26, 2011 / 29 HESHVAN 5772


Standing before his father Yitzchak (Isaac),
Ya'akov (Jacob) claims that he is his brother


PARSHAT HAYEI SARAH
GER TOSHAV: THE PERMANENT AND
TEMPORARY STATUS OF HUMAN EXISTENCE
NOVEMBER 18-19, 2011 / 22 HESHVAN 5772


As he buys a burial plot for his wife Sarah,
Avraham (Abraham) identifies himself as a ger
toshav. (Genesis 23:4) The term is enigmatic.


PARSHAT VA-YERA
AVRAHAM, UNIVERSALISM AND NATIONALISM
NOVEMBER 11-12, 2011/ 15 HESHVAN 5772


This week's portion (Va-yera) parallels last week's
(Lekh Lekha) with one significant exception. Lekh
Lekha is nationalistic, while this week's portion is universalistic.


PARSHAT LEKH-LEKHA
THE IMPORTANCE OF THE PLANTERS
OF THE SEEDS OF GREATNESS
NOVEMBER 4-5, 2011 / 8 HESHVAN 5772


Terah, Avraham's (Abraham) father, is often
viewed as an evil man and nothing more than
an idol worshipper. A review of the
text indicates otherwise.


PARSHAT NOACH
HOW TO REACT WHEN DISAPPOINTED
BY THE ONES WE LOVE
OCTOBER 28-29, 2011/ 1 HESHVAN 5772


After leaving the ark, Noah becomes
drunk and uncovers himself. (Genesis 9:21)


PARSHAT BEREISHIT
OCTOBER 21-22, 2011 / 24 TISHREI 5772


Why does the Torah begin with the Genesis story? If it is a
book of Law, ask the rabbis, why not
start with the first commandment?


SUKKOT: THE SECRET TO HAPPINESS
OCTOBER 13-21, 2011 / 15 TISHREI 5772


Sukkot is the only festival referred to as zeman simhateinu,
the time of happiness in our liturgy.


A TASTE OF TORAH IN HONOR OF YOM KIPPUR
OCTOBER 8, 2011/ 10 TISHREI 5772


The normative approach to Yom Kippur is that
it is a day set aside when we as individuals
and as part of the larger community ask for forgiveness.


PARSHAT HA'AZINU
THE MEANING OF TESHUVA
SEPTEMBER 30 - OCTOBER 1, 2011 / 3 TISHREI 5772


The central theme of Yom Kippur is teshuva, commonly
translated as "repentance." We hear so much about
this term, but what, in fact does it truly mean?


PARSHAT KNITZAVIM - VA-YELEKH
EACH GENERATION REACHES HIGHER AND HIGHER
SEPTEMBER 23-24, 2011 / 25 ELUL 5771


In the portion of Va-Yelekh, Moshe (Moses)
declares that God has not permitted him to
enter the land of Israel. (Deuteronomy 31:2)


PARSHAT KI TAVO
THE IMPORANCE OF PERSPECTIVE AND FOLLOW-UP
SEPTEMBER 16-17, 2011 / 18 ELUL 5771


Four sentences found in this week's portion
have become a central element of the Passover Seder.


PARSHAT KI TETZE
TO WHAT CAN THE LOVE BETWEEN GOD
AND HIS PEOPLE BE COMPARED?
SEPTEMBER 9-10, 2011 / 11 ELUL 5771


The love between God and His people is
often compared to the marital relationship.


PARSHAT SHOFTIM
EACH ONE OF US IS LIKE
THE TREE OF THE FIELD
SEPTEMBER 2-3, 2011 / 4 ELUL 5771


The Torah's sympathetic attitude toward ecology
surfaces in a law legislating conduct during
war. This week's portion states: "When you
besiege a city for many days


PARSHAT RE'EH
THE DIFFERENT MEANINGS OF RE'EH
AUGUST 26-27, 2011/ 27 AV 5771


The first word in our portion re-eh is one
of the most powerful terms found in the Torah.


PARSHAT EKEV
THE SIMPLE KEY TO WHY GOD GIVES US
THE COMMANDMENTS
AUGUST 19-20, 2011 / 20 AV 5771


Although we may live lives dedicated to following the
commandments of the Torah, the core
question of "What does God ask of us?"


PARSHAT VA'ETHANAN
THE DIVINE NEED FOR EACH ONE OF US
AUGUST 12-13, 2011/ 13 AV 5771


Without the world, what would God be? The


PARSHAT DEVARIM
NATIONAL EVENTS SERVE AS A CORRECTIVE
FOR INDIVIDUAL ONES
AUGUST 5-6, 2011 / 6 AV 5771


Many events in the book of Bereishit (Genesis) repeat
themselves in Devarim (Deuteronomy) with one major difference.


PARSHAT MASEI
THE VALUE OF LIVING IN THE LAND OF ISRAEL
JULY 29-30, 2011 / 28 TAMMUZ 5771


The portion of Masei includes the sentence that
speaks to the commandment of living in Israel.


PARSHAT MATOT
ONE ACTION CAN MAKE ALL OF THE DIFFERENCE
JULY 22-23, 2011/ 21 TAMMUZ 5771


In this week's portion, Moshe (Moses) gives to the


PARSHAT PINHAS
THE POWER IN STEPPING BACK
JULY 15-16, 2011 / 14 TAMMUZ 5771


One way that people attempt to attain transcendence
is by guiding their children on the
path they began. Even Moshe


PARSHAT BALAK
CHILDREN SHOULD NOT BE PUNISHED FOR
THE SINS OF THEIR PARENTS
JULY 8-9, 2011 / 7 TAMMUZ 5771


In this week's portion, Balak King of Moab
hires Bilaam to curse Israel.
(Numbers 22:5,6) A review of the history


PARSHAT HUKAT
THE LIMITATIONS OF THE HUMAN MIND
JULY 1-2, 2011 / 30 SIVAN 5771


There are differing opinions concerning the meaning
of "hok" (commonly translated as statute), the type


PARSHAT KORACH
DISSENT FOR THE SAKE OF HEAVEN
JUNE 24-25, 2011 / 23 SIVAN 5771


The controversy of Korach and his congregation-unlike
the controversy of the scholars Hillel and
Shammai - is a controversy not pursued


PARSHAT SHELACH
APPARENT TEMPORARY SITUATIONS
CAN BECOME TRUE TESTS OF RESOLVE
JUNE 17-18, 2011/ 16 SIVAN 5771


The episode of the spies indicates that the challenges
facing the Jewish people after we left Egypt
were not merely a temporary phase.


PARSHAT BEHA'ALOTCHA
LIMITATION CAN BE A CONDUIT TO FREEDOM
JUNE 10-11, 2011 / 9 SIVAN 5771


Complaining to Moshe (Moses), the Israelites cry out
that they remember the fish served
to them in Egypt that they







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