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Happiness through Holiness:
Insights for Sukkos, Shemini Atzeres and Simchas Torah
From the Haftorah Series
5 Lectures

Item #: S357

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Item Description:

On the heels of the Days of Awe comes a new phase of closeness to God – when joy and celebration take center stage. The intimacy of the sukkah and the fervent dancing with the Torah scrolls are like having dessert after the “meal” of repentance. Fittingly, the word “haftorah” also means dessert, the dessert that completes the Torah portion. So dig right into Rabbi Wein’s delectable serving of the holiday haftorahs. You’ll achieve what this season is all about: happiness through holiness.

Individual lectures:

The First Day of Succos - Succos is the most universal of Jewish holidays; the nations of the world celebrate it along with us. The Haftorah from the prophet Zacharia exemplifies this universality by describing the Messianic Era when all the nations of the world will recognize God, the Creator. But the Haftorah has its chilling side: apocalypse comes first. Rabbi Wein captures the dual spirit of this Haftorah, linking it to the ultimate lesson of Succos – God is our only real security.

The Second Day of Succos - The dedication of the first Holy Temple was a two-week celebration that culminated on Succos. A sacred and magnificent procession beyond the furthest reaches of our imagination, the vibrant details of this Haftorah, as well as the teachings of the Talmud, give us an inkling of Jewish life at its peak moment in history.

Shabbos Chol Hamoed Succos - In Jewish tradition, the cataclysmic war between Gog and Magog will take place during Succos, so Ezekiel’s harrowing description is the Haftorah for Shabbos Chol Ha Moed. Though we do not know the year it will be fought, the prophet teaches that it will devastate the enemies of Israel while purifying the Land and its people. Comparing the prophet’s vision of war to the wars over the State of Israel, Rabbi Wein delivers a disquieting message that every Jew must nonetheless heed.

Shemini Atzeres - At the conclusion of the dedication of the Holy Temple, King Solomon addresses the people with a speech embodying the highest of Jewish aspirations. With blessings for piety and tranquility, King Solomon’s words of wisdom highlight the value of maintaining humility at the height of success.

V'Zos Habracha - On the holiday of Simchas Torah, we read the first and final sections of the Chumash to show the eternity of Torah readings and our ongoing commitment to it. The Haftorah of this holiday shows a similar continuity; it is the first chapter of Joshua, the transition between the Chumash and the Prophets and between Moses and Joshua. God’s advice to Joshua as he assumes the mantle of leadership can teach all of us how to rise to the challenges of life.

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V'zos Habracha
Happiness through Holiness
From the Haftorah Series
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First Day Succos
Happiness through Holiness
From the Haftorah Series
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Second Day Succos
Happiness through Holiness
From the Haftorah Series
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Shabbos Chol Hamoed Succos
Happiness through Holiness
From the Haftorah Series
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Shemini Atzeres
Happiness through Holiness
From the Haftorah Series
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