Category Archives: Holidays

Before and Within

A strange Yom Kippur story was told by Rabbi Ishmael, a High Priest of the 2nd Temple: Once, I entered before and within (the Holy of Holies) to offer the incense and I saw Akatriel Yah, the Lord of Hosts, sitting on … Continue reading

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Beginnings Ripe And Ripening

Rabbi Eliezer asks:  From where do we learn that the world was created in Tishrei? From the verse: God said, let the earth sprout grasses, seed bearing plants, fruit trees of every kind on earth bearing fruit with the seed … Continue reading

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Sinai’s Appealing Thunder

I will not float in space un-tethered lest a cloud obscure the very fine line in my heart that separates good and evil. I have no life-line without the lightning and the thunder that I heard at Sinai. (Click here … Continue reading

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You Open For Him

Rabbi Eleazar HaKappar said:  Do not be like a lintel overhead that no one can reach; neither, be like a door beam that injures faces, nor like a raised threshold that bruises feet. Rather, be like a low threshold that … Continue reading

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More Moment Than Mountain

Ancient legends say that great mountains contended to be the site where God would reveal the Torah. But God did not have loftiness in mind: Mount Tabor and Mount Carmel presented themselves with pride as wide as the world saying:  … Continue reading

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“Pleas” Knock

That place, just above the latch to the left that no one has or ever will touch the place hidden, on which no one has laid a hand the place that does not know how to ask- It is the … Continue reading

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Between the Mountain and the Moment

The last words of the Ten Commandments resound from Sinai and the narrative of revelation continues:  All the people saw the thunder and the lightning, the blare of the horn and the mountain smoking; and when the people saw it, … Continue reading

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A Passover Conversation in Four Voices

Four conversed about the pine tree.  One defined it according to genus, species and variety.  One held forth concerning its shortcomings in the lumber industry.  One quoted verses about pine trees in numerous languages.  One struck root, stretched out branches … Continue reading

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The Lulav: Pointing To Creator and Creature at the Season of Creation

It is the manner of earthly monarchs to extend the scepter with favor towards a subject.  During Sukkot, when the lulav becomes the scepter, it is the earthly, earthy subject who extends the scepter with favor towards the horizons and … Continue reading

Posted in Holidays, Midrash, Parshat HaShavuah, Poetry | 4 Comments

Temporary Shelter

Twice a year the Jewish calendar offers the invitation and challenge to see the world differently.  During Pesah, everything that was kosher the day before is no longer kosher.  Six months later, during Sukkot, the temporary becomes permanent. For seven … Continue reading

Posted in Holidays, Poetry | 5 Comments