Friday, December 9, 2016

Audio Shiur: Parshat Vayeitzei - Accusatory Prayer

Audio Shiur:
Parshat Vayeitzei - Accusatory Prayer

Chazal explain that Yaakov instituted the prayer of Maariv based on the words "vayifga bamakom". This strange choice of words leads to an insight about different forms of prayer as we develop a deeper relationship with God.

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Wednesday, November 30, 2016

Audio Shiur: Parshat Toldot - Why Did Yitzchak Prefer Eisav An Idea from Rav Medan

Audio Shiur:
Parshat Toldot - Why Did Yitzchak Prefer Eisav An Idea from Rav Medan

Using his incredible breadth in Tanach, Rav Yaakov Medan of Yeshivat Har Etzion finds an example similar to Eisav which provides a possible explanation for why Yitzchak preferred Eisav over Yaakov, as well as why Avimelech sued Yitzchak for peace.

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Thursday, November 24, 2016

Audio Shiur: Parshat Chayei Sarah - Having in All - the Meaning of "Kol" According to Ramban

Audio Shiur:
Parshat Chayei Sarah - Having in All - the Meaning of "Kol" According to Ramban

When the Torah teaches us that God blessed Avraham with "kol" - everything, commentators differ as to the meaning of the term. What does it mean to have it all? Ramban, on the other hand, takes the discussion in an entirely different direction, leading us into the realm of kabbalistic thought and terminology. Enjoy the ride!


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Thursday, November 3, 2016

Audio Shiur: Parashat Bereishit - Good and Evil

Audio Shiur:
Parashat Bereishit - Good and Evil

The creation of man represents a core issue of Jewish faith today. With a race to create artificial intelligence, the question of whether man can "create" a self-aware "individual" presents a challenge to faith in a Creator. We also deal with the famous question: How could man have sinned, if he was only exposed to the possibility of evil by eating from the forbidden fruit? We address this very famous question from a number of different perspectives.



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Audio Shiur: Parashat Noach - Leaving the Ark

Audio Shiur:
Parashat Noach - Leaving the Ar

You'd think that leaving the ark after being cooped up for a year in a zoo would be a no-brainer. Yet, the pesukim seem to indicate otherwise.

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Friday, October 7, 2016

Audio Shiur: Parashat Vayelech - Passing the Mantle of Leadership

Audio Shiur:
Parashat Vayelech - Passing the Mantle of Leadership

Chazal note A very subtle change in the language between the charge that Moshe gives to Yeshoshua and the one that God gives him. From this different commentaries derive a number of important, but very different lessons.

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Wednesday, September 21, 2016

Audio Shiur: Parashat Ki Tavo - The Blessing of the Hidden

Audio Shiur:
Parashat Ki Tavo - The Blessing of the Hidden

There seems to be a great imbalance between the blessings of Ki Tavo (relatively few) and the curses (way more, and far more graphic). Why? By focusing on a nuance in the language as well as an insight in the Kli Yakkar, we suggest one possible answer.

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Friday, September 16, 2016

My First Parshah Shiur on ITV - Three Themes in Ki Teitzei

Yesterday morning I was working in a coffee shop when I got a text asking me if I could make it to Tel Aviv to record a short interview on the parashah. It just so happened that I had a meeting in Ramat Gan (and I almost never have meetings in the Tel Aviv area) so I agreed to do it. Here's the clip. Enjoy!


Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Audio Shiur: Parshat Ki Teitzei - Watching our Words, Keeping our Commitments

Audio Shiur:
Parshat Ki Teitzei - Watching our Words, Keeping our Commitments

The Torah commands us to take great care with the vows we make, and to keep our commitments. Yet, this raises the question of why vows have meaning at all. Why must we keep our promises? Why is a vow halachically binding? Are vows good or bad? How can something that propels us to spiritual growth be so dangerous?

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Friday, September 9, 2016

Audio Shiur: Parshat Shoftim - Faith in our Rabbinic Leaders

Audio Shiur:
Parshat Shoftim - Faith in our Rabbinic Leaders

Emunat Chachamim isn't simply an important detail in Jewish life; it's a fundamental aspect of Orthodoxy. In an era of democracy of information, where the notion of questioning authority in every area is not only encouraged, but essential culturally, the issue of emunat chachamim is a critical element of religious faith.

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