Category: Tefillah

Memories of His Child Ephraim 0

Memories of His Child Ephraim

(My first attempt at this post was seriously flawed, both typographically and in flow. This is a significant reworking. If you have ideas for further improvement, they’re eagerly invited.) I Why is it that...

And with what? With a Shofar 0

And with what? With a Shofar

אמר רבי יהודה משום רבי עקיבא … אמר הקדוש ברוך הוא: … ואמרו לפני בראש השנה מלכיות זכרונות ושופרות. מלכיות: כדי שתמליכוני עליכם. זכרונות: כדי שיעלה זכרוניכם לפני לטובה. ובמה? בשופר. Rabbi Yehudah said...

Coronating G-d 0

Coronating G-d

(Significantly enlarged from the 2005 version. -micha) I Melukhah (kingship) is a major theme, if not the major theme of Rosh haShanah. Aside from the ubiquity of the word in our liturgy for Rosh...

Types of Thought: Progressions 0

Types of Thought: Progressions

The first of the requests of the Shemoneh Esrei is Birchas haDa’as, the blessing on understanding. We first state “Atah chonein le’adam da’as – You grant humanity understanding, umelameid le’enosh binah – and teach...

Three Modes of Tefillah 0

Three Modes of Tefillah

From Avodah v24 n215, submitted by R’ Moshe Y. Gluck: R’ Shraga Feivel Mendlowitz explained the Zohar that says that there are three types of Tefillos: Tefillah L’Ani [the prayer of the poor] is...

Hagaddah 0


A couple of years ago I collected some of my own thoughts and others from around the web into a commentary on the Haggadah shel Pesach. I took special care to give the seider...

The Efficacy of Prayer 0

The Efficacy of Prayer

Last Thursday morning, hours before the attack at Mercaz haRav, there was a tefillah rally at the kotel featuring a number of well known rabbis. On Avodah, R’ Eli Turkel repeated this provocative question:...

The Kindness of Hashem 0

The Kindness of Hashem

For many years — from before my bar mitzvah until my marriage — I had the honor to learn with Rabbi Matis Blum (who was a teen when we started) on Shabbos morning. Yesterday...