Parshas Tatzria-Metzora

This weeks parshas, Tatzria and Metzora, are all but exclusively about Tzaras. A spiritual disease that is contracted when an individual behaves socially inappropriately.  And, when a person (or their house) contracts this malady, the remedy to rid oneself of this disease is to isolate oneself and to self-reflect.  As we are self-isolating due to … [Read more…]

Pesach: It Starts with Karpas

At one time, when we didn’t dip the Karpas into the salt water.  We dipped the Karpas into red vinegar or Charoses with red wine. To this day, some Jews, including Sefardim, still dip the Karpas into red vinegar or Charoses with red wine. The idea being that we dip the Karpas into blood. (Apparently, … [Read more…]

Sh’lo Asani Goy

One day, a soon-to-be Ger is a Goy. Then, moments later, the Ger is 100% a Jew. Not a single gene, chromosome, or biological aspect of the Ger has changed. Biologically, the Ger is the exact same. Yet, on the deepest level, this person has made a dramatic change. The key being that this dramatic … [Read more…]

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…]