Chad Gadya from Rabbi Y. L. Graubart

Rabbi Yehuda Leib Graubart zzl, points out that this supposed children’s song is actually a very deep piece. The goat is good.  And all is good.  Until a cat comes a long and eats the goat.  Because he ate this good, innocent goat, the cat is bad.  So a dog comes along and eats the … [Read more…]

Remember Amalek

As Jews, Hashem tells us to remember Amalek.  The Jews have had no shortage of enemies and our enemies have no shortage of bad middos.  But Hashem specifically wants us to remember this enemy, Amalek.  Even when Moshiach comes and Hashem brings us to Eretz Yisrael, remember Amalek.  Amalek is important. And, for some reason, … [Read more…]

Nevi’im (Yehoshua Perek 6) by Shlermie

Per Hashem’s command, Yehoshua has the Jews circle Jericho and the Kohanim circle Jericho and blow their shofars.  There are lots of sixes (a physical number, like the six days of the week), lots of sevens (a spiritual number, like Shabbas), and, after the circling, the shofar blasts, and the shouting of the Jews, the … [Read more…]

Steven Levy Remembering Rabbi Gettinger

Examples of Rabbi Gettinger’s unique approach to learning: 1) This is a chiddush of his that’s classic Rabbi Gettinger and easy to explain. In the second Rashi on daf 2a (dibbur hamaschil: Ad sof ha’ashmura rishona (until the end of the first watch period)), Rashi writes, “shelish halayla” as the Gemara explains later. However, if … [Read more…]

Daf (Berachos 10) by Shlermie

In the first few lines of the broader lines on 10b, the Gemara explains how the Shunamite woman knew Elisha was holy. And she knew due to two reasons: a fly never passed upon his table and, when Elisha slept within her home, she never saw a seminal emission upon his sheets. One obviously cannot … [Read more…]

Daf (Berachos 5) and Chumash (Vayechi) by Shlermie

Berachos 5 speaks extensively about afflictions: afflictions of love, afflictions that cannot be love, financial afflictions, afflictions involving children, etc.  This is a daf about pain, suffering, and our trying to understand this pain and suffering.  Similarly, Parshas Vayechi directly follows Parshas Vayigash without the usual Parsha break.  Rav Hirsch points out that Yaakov’s 17 … [Read more…]

Nevi’im (Yehoshua Perek 1) by Shlermie

Hashem tells Yehoshua to “be strong and courageous” (Chazak v’Ematz).  This is contrasted with Hashem telling Yehoshua to “not fear and not to lose resolve” (al ta’arotz v’al taychat).  In both cases, Hashem is speaking to Yehoshua following his Torah.  And when Yehoshua speaks with the tribes of Reuven, Gad and half the tribe of … [Read more…]