Rabbi Wein.com The Voice of Jewish History

Rabbi Wein’s Weekly Blog

In My Opinion

GREAT ISSUES. PERSONAL MOTIVES 6/11/2019 12:05 PM

I rarely if ever write about politics per se. All politics is messy and borders upon reviewing the worst instincts that exist within human behavior. I am not interested in washing dirty linen in public, and though I believe in democracy and its institutions and procedures, I am oftentimes unable to reconcile myself to the manner in which democratic elections or the legislative and executive...

AIR CONDITIONING 6/2/2019 06:04 AM

There is no doubt in my mind that one of the major technological improvements that we benefit from in our modern world is air-conditioning. There are great areas of the world that were previously almost uninhabitable because of the heat of their climate but that today are thriving large cities simply because the homes, offices, factories and automobiles operating in those high heat areas are now...

GOLDEN SILENCE 5/26/2019 11:25 AM

I have often written in the past about the inestimable value of the virtue of silence. The Talmud in its eternal wisdom values silence as being twice the worth of even the wisest of speech. Now I realize that I myself am violating this sublime rule by writing, which is a form of speech. But then I feel that the subject is worthy of note and reinforcement and more than necessary in our current...

STYLES AND FASHIONS 5/19/2019 11:07 AM

Though the holiday of Purim is long behind us in the calendar year it made an indelible impression upon me and taught me a lesson that I am reminded of even now. In our synagogue on Purim the congregants were dressed up in various costumes and headgear. Some of our old military veterans wore their military uniforms that, amazingly enough, still fit. Other people had outlandish costumes ranging...

THINKING ABOUT WRITING 5/12/2019 12:53 PM

Since I wish to present an opinion article to you, my beloved and loyal readers, on a weekly basis, I am always there thinking about what to write. This is a very taxing experience because thinking requires focus and attention and at my stage of life neither of these attributes is found in abundance any longer. But I continue to think daily about what I want to say and how I want to say it, and...

LOCKSMITHS 5/5/2019 12:46 PM

There is currently an advertising campaign broadcasting on Israeli radio and other media trying to induce listeners and readers to consider choosing to become a locksmith as a profession. Radio commercials state that there are over 3 million requests for locksmiths annually in Israel, to solve the inevitable problems that come with having locks and safes and there are less than 300 certified...

THE FORCE OF INDIVIDUALS 4/28/2019 01:13 PM

Part of the philosophy of the left, especially of socialism and communism, is to denigrate the role of individuals and their choices in influencing history and events and to see the human story rather in terms of historic, economic and political forces. I recently watched a debate that was recorded in a documentary film about the causes of the First World War. Almost all the professors...

PESACH 4/14/2019 11:10 AM

At the great seder night of Pesach when we read and discuss the immortal words of the Pesach Hagada, my family has always enthusiastically sung the portion of the Hagada that we know as “Dayenu.” By the grace of God, I have been able to witness a number of my generations singing this meaningful poem of praise to the Almighty for the bountiful goodness that he has bestowed upon us. Since...

SHABBAT HAGADOL 4/7/2019 11:05 AM

The Shabbat that precedes the holiday of Passover has been named by Jewish tradition as Shabbat Hagadol – the great Shabbat. Over the ages there have been numerous explanations and comments as to why this Shabbat is set apart from all others. The view that is recorded in rabbinic literature is that this Shabbat marks the anniversary of the Jewish people’s preparation of the sacrificial lamb...

THE PASSING SCENE 3/31/2019 10:49 AM

I have very wonderful friends who are kind enough to pick me up in their automobiles and drive me to the synagogue during the week. They are very punctual and the time that is set for pick up is almost always exactly observed. Because of this, I go down to the corner of my street and wait there at least 10 minutes before the appointed time because I enjoy the scene which is never the same and...