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Rabbi Wein’s Weekly Blog

Jewish Thought

THE LOST COMPUTER FILE 11/29/2020 11:37 AM

Computers are a wonderful invention. In our current world, it is impossible to think how we would function without them. Even though until a little over a half-century ago we apparently did function very well without them, today it is unthinkable to think that we could somehow be productive and efficient without computers. Such is the nature of technological progress, that it not only makes past...

MEMORIES 11/22/2020 01:50 PM

The human brain is an unbelievably complex organ. It houses millions of facts, of data and information. It also is the storehouse of human memories. In fact, everything that has ever been said or done by any individual is, somehow, stored and remembered by the individual’s brain. Most of the time, we can control which memories we wish to bring to the fore, and which events and conversations we...

JEWISH GROWTH 11/15/2020 11:52 AM

Numerically, the Jewish people are only an exceedingly small part of humanity. Even at the height of the most optimistic of surveys, we were and are a small constituent in the overall picture of the numbers of humans who inhabit this planet. This is always been so, for the Torah itself guaranteed that we would be the least numerous amongst nations. Nevertheless, at the very same time, we...

UNINTENDED CONSEQUENCES 11/8/2020 11:43 AM

Unintended consequences are well-known and ubiquitous regarding many areas of human life. It is especially true regarding legislative matters which are adopted by parliaments and congresses. No matter how carefully the law is adopted and written, there always are results that are not foreseen in that piece of legislation. Most of the time these consequences are unfortunately of a negative...

A TALE OF TWO WEDDINGS 10/25/2020 12:21 PM

Almost a quarter of a century ago when I first settled permanently here in Jerusalem, I was invited to a wedding of a distant cousin of mine whom I had never really met but somehow he had determined that we were related. I always had a strong sense of family and even though I knew that I would not know anyone attending that wedding – not even my distant cousin whom I would not be able to...

OPEN ORTHODOXY 10/12/2020 10:47 AM

Since transparency is a favorite buzzword in today's enlightened society, I feel compelled to warn my beloved readers of my articles and essays, that this article is not about what you may think, given its title. I am not referring to radical ideas and behavior that masquerade as remaining within the boundaries of Jewish tradition and halachic norms. Rather, this article is about our synagogue...

RETURN AND REPENTANCE 8/30/2020 12:28 PM

We find ourselves towards the end of the month of Elul, standing before the great days of judgment, forgiveness, and renewed commitment. A few weeks ago, I happened to visit my physician on a relatively minor matter. As he handed me a prescription for a lotion that I should apply and a pill that I should take, he inquired as to whether I had ever been vaccinated for pneumonia. When I told him...

ALL ZOOMED OUT 8/23/2020 10:06 AM

Like many other rabbis and teachers, I have been delivering lectures and teaching Torah to a mostly unseen audience via the technological wonder called Zoom. Because of the coronavirus pandemic and the mandatory governmental ordered lockdowns and assorted prohibitions regarding gathering in public places, especially synagogues, I have had little choice in the matter. I believe that I have...

SPIRITUAL FALLOUT 8/16/2020 10:49 AM

The current Corona epidemic has created many types of victims in its wake. Tragically, it is estimated that hundreds of thousands of people worldwide have died from the effects of the virus, out of the millions of others, really tens if not hundreds of millions of others, who contracted the disease. Thank God, over 90% of those who were sick have recovered and even though there is some anecdotal...

DEMONSTRATIONS 7/27/2020 10:03 AM

Over the past few weeks, the neighborhood that I live in here in Jerusalem, Rechavia, has been subjected to almost nightly demonstrations. The demonstrators gather across from the house of the Prime Minister of Israel, and proceed to make a lot of noise, beat drums, block traffic, and generally make one aware of their presence. However, I am not really clear as to what they are demonstrating for....