Machshavah Lab-logo

Machshavah Lab

Philosophy Podcasts

My name is Rabbi Matt Schneeweiss. My goal as a Torah educator is not merely to teach my students my OWN hashkafah. Rather, my goal is to equip them with the foundations, the methodological training, and the tools which will enable them to arrive at their OWN understanding of Judaism and cultivate their OWN relationship with Hashem and His Torah. This podcast is devoted to the shiurim I give which are geared specifically towards that end. As such, the range of topics covered here will be diverse. There will be shiurim on Jewish philosophy, Chumash methodology, aggadic midrashim, maybe even some non-Jewish philosophy as well. Merriam-Webster defines "laboratory" as a place providing opportunity for experimentation, observation, or practice in a field of study. I call this podcast "Machshavah Lab" because this is where we will conduct Torah "experiments" by exploring questions, texts, and ideas in an effort to develop our machshavah in a "hands on," exploratory, firsthand manner.

My name is Rabbi Matt Schneeweiss. My goal as a Torah educator is not merely to teach my students my OWN hashkafah. Rather, my goal is to equip them with the foundations, the methodological training, and the tools which will enable them to arrive at their OWN understanding of Judaism and cultivate their OWN relationship with Hashem and His Torah. This podcast is devoted to the shiurim I give which are geared specifically towards that end. As such, the range of topics covered here will be diverse. There will be shiurim on Jewish philosophy, Chumash methodology, aggadic midrashim, maybe even some non-Jewish philosophy as well. Merriam-Webster defines "laboratory" as a place providing opportunity for experimentation, observation, or practice in a field of study. I call this podcast "Machshavah Lab" because this is where we will conduct Torah "experiments" by exploring questions, texts, and ideas in an effort to develop our machshavah in a "hands on," exploratory, firsthand manner.

Location:

United States

Description:

My name is Rabbi Matt Schneeweiss. My goal as a Torah educator is not merely to teach my students my OWN hashkafah. Rather, my goal is to equip them with the foundations, the methodological training, and the tools which will enable them to arrive at their OWN understanding of Judaism and cultivate their OWN relationship with Hashem and His Torah. This podcast is devoted to the shiurim I give which are geared specifically towards that end. As such, the range of topics covered here will be diverse. There will be shiurim on Jewish philosophy, Chumash methodology, aggadic midrashim, maybe even some non-Jewish philosophy as well. Merriam-Webster defines "laboratory" as a place providing opportunity for experimentation, observation, or practice in a field of study. I call this podcast "Machshavah Lab" because this is where we will conduct Torah "experiments" by exploring questions, texts, and ideas in an effort to develop our machshavah in a "hands on," exploratory, firsthand manner.

Language:

English

Contact:

9177836827


Episodes

Judaism and the Benefits of EFT (Episodic Future Thinking)

7/13/2022
Synopsis: This is the audio version of the 1-page article I wrote entitled, Judaism and the Benefits of EFT (Episodic Future Thinking) in which we explore of the regular opportunities we have in halacha to practice EFT and enumerate the benefits of such a practice. Note that this is a sequel to yesterday's episode, which you are advised to listen to before this one. Here's a link to the video I referred to. ---------- The Torah content for these two weeks has been sponsored by Judah and...

Duration:00:05:01

EFT (Episodic Future Thinking) A Summer 2022 Project

7/12/2022
Synopsis: This is the audio version of the 1-page article I wrote entitled, EFT (Episodic Future Thinking) A Summer 2022 Project, which I hope will serve as an introduction to a concept and a practice which I suspect will dominate my thinking for the next couple of months. ---------- The Torah content for these two weeks has been sponsored by Judah and Naomi Dardik in loving memory of Rabbi Moskowitz zt''l, who taught his students to pursue truth by asking questions, who modeled love of...

Duration:00:05:38

How Rambam Sees God in the Sunset

7/11/2022
Synopsis: This is the audio version of the 1-page article I wrote entitled, How Rambam Sees God in the Sunset, which examines whether the feeling of awe we experience upon seeing a beautiful sunset constitutes a "valid religious experience" according to the Rambam's views. ---------- The Torah content for these two weeks has been sponsored by Judah and Naomi Dardik in loving memory of Rabbi Moskowitz zt''l, who taught his students to pursue truth by asking questions, who modeled love of...

Duration:00:05:08

State of the Blog: Summer 2022

6/27/2022
Synopsis: This is the audio version of the 1-page article I wrote entitled, State of the Blog: Summer 2022, in which I state my plans for the next two weeks and the rest of the summer, as far as this blog is concerned. ---------- This week's Torah content has been sponsored by Naomi Mann in honor of Rabbi Moskowitz zt"l, whose shloshim is this week. ---------- If you have questions, comments, or feedback, I would love to hear from you! Please feel free to contact me at rabbischneeweiss...

Duration:00:04:43

Shelach: Challah as a Consequence of the Cheit ha'Meraglim

6/24/2022
Synopsis: This is the audio version of the 1-page article I wrote entitled, Shelach: Challah as a Consequence of the Cheit ha'Meraglim, in which I attempt to explain a radical view of Sforno with some help from the Sefer ha'Chinuch and Ralbag. ---------- This week's Torah content has been sponsored by Naomi Mann in honor of Rabbi Moskowitz zt"l, whose shloshim is this week. ---------- If you have questions, comments, or feedback, I would love to hear from you! Please feel free to contact...

Duration:00:04:42

Leo Tolstoy, Eishes Chayil, and Caring What Others Think

6/23/2022
Synopsis: This is the audio version of the 1-page article I wrote entitled, Leo Tolstoy, Eishes Chayil, and Caring What Others Think, which analyzes a quotation from the Russian novelist which parallels the final pasuk of Mishlei, showing a path to freedom from caring about the opinions of others. ---------- This week's Torah content has been sponsored by Naomi Mann in honor of Rabbi Moskowitz zt"l, whose shloshim is this week. ---------- If you have questions, comments, or feedback, I...

Duration:00:04:34

When Hashem Prefers Telling Lies Over Doing Miracles

6/22/2022
Synopsis: This is the audio version of the 1-page article I wrote entitled, When Hashem Prefers Telling Lies Over Doing Miracles, which is a write-up of a basic idea about hashgachah pratis that appears in dozens of places in the Rishonim which I happened to stumble upon in my recent learning of Sefer Shmuel. (And yes - this, too, ends in an educational rant.) ---------- This week's Torah content has been sponsored by Naomi Mann in honor of Rabbi Moskowitz zt"l, whose shloshim is this...

Duration:00:04:46

Shloshim for Rabbi Morton Moskowitz zt"l

6/21/2022
This is a recording of the shloshim memorial event for Rabbi Morton Moskowitz zt"l which took place over Zoom on June 21, 2022 (22 Sivan 5782). For a link to the book written by Rabbi Moskowitz and Doug Taylor, "Getting it Straight: Practical Ideas for a Life of Clarity," click this link: https://drive.google.com/file/d/1ulYh70S2_gEvq6reP6iUxeLH2L7x8Mri/view?usp=sharing

Duration:02:03:30

On Reading the Rambam's Mishneh Torah Like a Love Letter

6/21/2022
Synopsis: This is the audio version of the 1-page article I wrote entitled, On Reading the Rambam's Mishneh Torah Like a Love Letter, which is part PSA and part rant regarding the widespread practice to favor the standard printed editions of the Mishneh Torah over the critical editions. ---------- This week's Torah content has been sponsored by Naomi Mann in honor of Rabbi Moskowitz zt"l, whose shloshim is this week. ---------- If you have questions, comments, or feedback, I would love...

Duration:00:05:35

An Example of My Idiosyncratic Brand of Spirituality

6/20/2022
Synopsis: This is the audio version of the 1-page article I wrote entitled, An Example of My Idiosyncratic Brand of Spirituality, in which I recount a spiritual experience I had this past Shabbos and describe my personal form of spirituality (without defining it or explaining it). ---------- This week's Torah content has been sponsored by Naomi Mann in honor of Rabbi Moskowitz zt"l, whose shloshim is this week. ---------- If you have questions, comments, or feedback, I would love to hear...

Duration:00:05:28

Parashas Naso: Nine Explanations for a Twelvefold Repetition

6/10/2022
This morning (6/10/22), in our "Machshavah Lab" series for women, we took up one of my "pet sugya" questions which rolls around once a year: Why does the Torah "waste" so much space writing about the twelve identical offerings brought by the princes of the twelve tribes? I would have loved to find twelve answers to this question, but this year, I was only able to find a total of nine. ---------- מקורות: במדבר ז:א-ב,י-כג אברבנאל – במדבר פרק ז Robert Alter, The Five Books of Moses: A...

Duration:01:27:31

Rabbi Moskowitz: On Ignoring a Bas Kol (Heavenly Voice)

6/3/2022
This morning (6/3/22), in lieu of our usual Friday Q&A (which is not recorded), I decided to share some Torah from my rebbi, Rabbi Morton Moskowitz zt"l, who passed away on Sunday morning. I played an 8-minute recording of an idea Rabbi Moskowitz gave over on two stories from the Gemara in which a bas kol is ignored. We discussed this idea and its implications during and after the recording. Although there's a lot more to discuss here, it's clear that this was a fruitful and...

Duration:00:51:23

My Eulogy for Rabbi Moskowitz zt"l

5/30/2022
I'm sharing this recording on all five of my podcasts, regardless of their subject matter, because Rabbi Moskowitz is responsible for all the Torah I learn and teach. This is the audio of the eulogy I gave for my beloved rebbi, Rabbi Morton Moskowitz zt"l on Erev Rosh Chodesh Sivan 5782 (May 30th, 2022). For the video, click here. I plan on typing up the transcript of the abridged version of the eulogy (which is the one I gave), as well as the full version of the eulogy (which I haven't...

Duration:00:09:31

Judaism's Nuanced Attitude Towards Converts as Exemplified by Naomi

5/27/2022
This morning (5/27/22), in our "Machshavah Lab" series for women, we examined the very strange dialogue between Naomi, Orpah, and Rus. The major question we had was: What was Naomi trying to accomplish here? Thanks to the Ralbag's commentary, backed by the Rambam's presentation of the halachos, we were able to make sense of Naomi's words and actions AND we gained insight into (ahem) Judaism's nuanced attitude towards converts. We even addressed the prevalent misconception that a prospective...

Duration:01:23:26

How to Daven for a Sick Person Who is Beyond Recovery

5/27/2022
This is the same shiur I uploaded to my Tefilah podcast, but since more people subscribe to Machshavah Lab, I wanted to upload it here as well. About an hour before I was scheduled to give shiur tonight (5/26/22), I received the terrible news that my rebbi - Rabbi Moskowitz (Meir ben Esther Malka) - will no longer be able to continue dialysis. Because I couldn't manage to take my mind off of the imminent implications of this, I decided to do what Rabbi Moskowitz would do in such a...

Duration:01:04:59

What is Kareis? Part 3 (Abravanel with some Ran)

5/25/2022
This evening (5/25/22), in our aptly named "Chumash Exploration," we began concluded (for now) our learning of the Abravanel's hidden miniature treatise (in Parashas Shelach) on kareis, in which he surveys all the views of his predecessors and expresses his objections to them. In this final installment we learn through the Abravanel's own view, along with his proofs and refutations of the objections. We raised some of our own objections, based on one of the Drashos ha'Ran. Where does this...

Duration:01:02:26

The Metaphysical Implications of Stubbing Your Toe

5/20/2022
This morning (5/20/22), in our "Machshavah Lab" series for women, I gave an experimental shiur about hashgachah. It would be great to give a shiur on how hashgachah pratis, reward and punishment, and Divine justice work. The problem is that these topics are WAY too broad and WAY too deep and WAY too beyond my knowledge level. However, there are many statements of Chazal which seem to presuppose that the average Jew WILL be able to frame the day to day events in their lives in the framework...

Duration:01:45:52

What is Kareis? Part 2 (Tosafos, Rambam, Ramban)

5/18/2022
This evening (5/18/22), in our aptly named "Chumash Exploration," we began continued learning the Abravanel's hidden miniature treatise (in Parashas Shelach) on kareis, in which he surveys all the views of his predecessors and expresses his objections to them, and then presents his own view. After reviewing opinions #1-3, we then learned opinions #4-6, along with the Abravanel's objections to them, plus our objections to his objections. All we have left is the seventh opinion: that of the...

Duration:01:07:13

R' Yitzchak Kanpanton and R. Waldo Emerson on Emunas Chachamim

5/13/2022
This morning (5/13/22), in our "Machshavah Lab" series for women, we had an experimental shiur on the topic of "emunas chachamim." First we defined the quality of emunas chachamim based on R' Yitzchak Kanpanton's methodology sefer. We then compared and contrasted his approach to some of the ideas written about by Ralph Waldo Emerson in his speech, "The American Scholar." Judging by the discussion we had, this exercise resulted in some nice methodology insights, which is what I hoped would...

Duration:01:23:21

What is Kareis? Part 1 (Saadia Gaon, Ibn Ezra, Rashi, Tosafos)

5/11/2022
This evening (5/11/22), in our aptly named "Chumash Exploration," we began learning the Abravanel's hidden miniature treatise (in Parashas Shelach) on kareis, in which he surveys all the views of his predecessors and expresses his objections to them, and then presents his own view. Tonight we made it through the first three views: (1) Saadia Gaon and Ibn Ezra, (2) Rashi, and (3) Tosafos. We have three more views to go before we get to the Abravanel's! ---------- מקורות: אברנבאל - במדבר...

Duration:01:12:05