Aspaqlaria Blog

My Tzitzis 0

So you shall not veer…

The Medrash about Qorach rhetorically asking of Moshe why a tallis that is made of tekheiles would need one more tekheiles thread for tzitzis ties the mitzvah of tzitzis to the next story in the Chumash – Qorach. The words of the parashah about tzitzis tie it to a slightly earlier story – the meraglim. ,,,

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Derashos haRan – Derashah #2

The chaburah at Zelmele’s Kloiz finished the Ran’s second derashah… The Yaaqov – Eisav conflict plays out three times … Meanwhile the Ran continued the theme he introduced in the first derashah about Maaseh Bereishis, and the interface between the spiritual world and our physical one….

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Rabbi Dr Seth Mandel zt”l

There is something I wanted to check today in Chovos haLvavos, Shaar haBitachon. … My question revolved around specific wording.

And this is only a couple of days after losing the rebbe-chaver who would have explained the original Judeo-Arabic Al Hidayah ila Faraid al-Qulub, the word Rabbeinu Bachyah ibn Pequdah actually used!

R Dr Seth Mandel not only held a PhS in Linguistics from Harvared, specializing in Semitic Languages. He is a Rav I am sure pasqened for you personally. If you ever ate meat with OU shechitah, you relied on his decision as the OU’s Rabbinic Coordinator for all of Shechitah.

We met some 44 years ago….

The Tomb of Shemu'el haNavi 0

The Yahrzeit of Shemu’el haNavi

[A] custom arose, as recorded by the Radvaz, to come to Nabi Samwil, the traditionally identified location of his gravesite, tonight, on his yahrzeit. A bit north of Yerushalayim. And there children would get their first haircuts. When Shemu’el was weened, he was sent to the Mishkan to live. And he was a nazir, who did not cut his hair his entire life. So there is a logical connection between Shemu’el haNavi and haircuts. Also moved into the Mishkan after he was weened and he grew up there, thus giving the navi a connection to toddlers turning into boys, as well.

Yachatz 0

Yachatz – Broken Matzos

When Moshe counts the Jews, each man of military age contributes a half-sheqel … One of the Ran’s themes in his first derashah is the idea that a compound will generally be superior to the components. … The Ran continues that what is true for elements and compounds is true for individuals and the community. … There is a similar theme to the step of Yachatz in the Seder.

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Parashas Tzav and the Book of Mrs. Job

Vayiqra is about the qorban as performed by the person bringing it. Tzav is the qorban as performed by the kohein. These are two totally different things. Each of us live in our own world.

We have a book of Iyov, which tells the story of the tragedies Iyov lived through. But Iyov’s wife? There is no book explaining her tragedy. Nor that of his children. Those would have been very different books with very different stories. Every person impacted by an event is a protagonist in and of themselves, and Hashem insures that their experiences and duties make sense for them within their own perspective.

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Derashos haRan – Derashah #1

All the chaburos in which we learned the first derashah of Derashos haRan are now available on YouTube!
https://www.youtube.com/playlist?list=PLG3qHos5M39LStfXgit4J_FN4EamgQFEo
….
If I were to summarize the topic, the Ran opens with the idea that…

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Neo-Chassidic Spirituality and Self-Focus – a Pothole to Avoid

A big problem, and perhaps The Big Problem, of the Orthodox community as it revived post-Shoah has been “Frumkeit”, as Rabbi Wolbe defines the term. Doing mitzvos out of an instinct that I need to be holier, rather than out of a desire that Hashem’s Will be done. It is a self-centered and self-serving orientation, as are all instincts. Rav Dessler would say it is coming from one’s Will to Take rather than one’s Will to Give. … Neo-Chassidus, with its focus on my relationship with G-d, doesn’t have many tools to fix that. Going to a kumzitz or a singing minyan to have an inspirational moment certainly don’t. All it offers is a hope that one internalizes one’s studies.

Jar of oil 0

The True Hero

Don’t picture a single jar of oil found amidst the rubble. The Beis haMiqdash wasn’t trashed, it was perverted into a Temple of Zeus. … That single jar oil needed to be searched for because it had been hidden. Who hid it?