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Rabbi Wein’s Weekly Blog

GOLDEN SILENCE

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...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

Bechukotai

The final portion of this third book of the Torah contains an ominous tone. This is because of the vivid description of evil events that will befall the Jewish people when they desert their Godly mission and sink to the level of the societies that surround and outnumber them. The Torah promises us that such behavior and attitudes will surely lead to disaster, exile and persecution from the very...

Posted in:
Weekly Parsha
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

STYLES AND FASHIONS

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...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

BEHAR

This week's Torah reading seems to emphasize that the granting of the Torah to Moshe, and through him to Israel generally, took place at the Mountain of Sinai. Since the Torah does not deal with incidental geographic details, this emphasis regarding the mountain bears study and analysis. Mountain climbing is a sport for the hardy of spirit and the physically fit. However most of us are perfectly...

Posted in:
Weekly Parsha
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

THINKING ABOUT WRITING

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...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

EMOR

The opening subject matter in this week's Torah reading deals with the existence of impurities in Jewish and human society. In our world today, especially in the realm of the intelligentsia, there is a great deal of chatter and worry about the pollution of our atmosphere. When the threat of global warming proved to be unfounded, the environmentalists amongst us changed the focus of their dire...

Posted in:
Weekly Parsha
by
Faigie Gilbert

LOCKSMITHS

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...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

K’DOSHIM

This week's Torah reading makes a heavy demand upon us. It commands us to be a holy and dedicated people and to continually aspire to heights of piety and holiness. Some will say that this is an almost impossible task and is especially difficult since the Torah does not define for us how it is to be achieved. But that is only a superficial understanding of what this Torah portion is coming to...

Posted in:
Weekly Parsha
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

THE FORCE OF INDIVIDUALS

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...

Posted in:
In My Opinion
by
Rabbi Berel Wein

ACHREI MOS

This Torah reading is inextricably connected to the holiest day of the Jewish calendar, Yom Kippur. The first half of the reading comprises the very same Torah reading that is read on the morning of Yom Kippur, while the latter part of this reading is read publicly during the afternoon service of that day. The first part deals with the ritual and service of the high priest in the holy Temple on...

Posted in:
Weekly Parsha
by
Rabbi Berel Wein