Cleanliness Is Next to G-dliness

I was once consulting with Rav Moshe Sternbuch about bathing due to perspiration during the Nine Days. After our conversation, Rav Sternbuch’s shamesh confided, “I have been close to the rav for nearly twenty years. During all the time I have known him, I...

Mishna 15(b): Masking Holiness – Part II

“Rabbi Elazar of Moda said: One who desecrates sacred objects, one who disgraces the festivals, one who shames his fellow in public, one who annuls the covenant of our forefather Abraham, or one who interprets the Torah not according to Jewish law — even...

Tarnished Treasures of Pesach

Pesach, the holiday that celebrates the liberation of the Jewish nation from slavery in Egypt, begins this year at sunset on Wednesday, March 31, 1999. The Seder is a special service unique to Pesach, and is conducted on the first (and second, outside of Israel)...

Going Beyond the Letter of the Law Part 3

In the previous article we discussed why there was such a strict punishment when the Jews treated each other in a strict fashion: They missed the point of “what is right and good,” that it is wrong to treat one’s fellow Jew in a harsh and unforgiving...

Freedom and Self-Awareness

SCENARIO #1 “I can do anything in the world I want. There is just one problem – I don’t know what I want.” Question: Is this person free? Answer: Yes, and no. Yes, she possesses the freedom to do whatever she wants. But then again no, for she...
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