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Minute Lessons From the Torah

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Episodes

Episode 31: Re'eh Choose Your Path

8/16/2017
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We are human beings with free will and we get to choose the right and just path. The right path is to follow God and strive to always do what is right.

Duration: 00:02:09


Episode 30: Matot-Massei - Cities of Refuge

7/18/2017
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This is the last Torah Portion from the book of numbers. The Israelites are so close to the promised land but before they can enter the promised land God tells Moses that they must create cities of refuge. Today we might call them Sanctuary cities. Today when we are talking about Sanctuary cities we are talking about protecting undocumented immigrants in the United States. The Torah Laws related to the cities of refuge are unique. The Torah says that when a person accidentally kills...

Duration: 00:01:41


Episode 29: Balak - Ma Tovu a Curse Becomes a blessing

7/6/2017
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Ma tovu….How great are your tents, O Jacob, your dwelling places, O Israel! These words are the opening lines of a prayer that many Jews say when entering a synagogue. These words appear in this week’s Torah Portion in Number 24:5. Where Balaam is sent to curse the Israelites. But instead, Balaam is overcome the awe and awesomeness of God and the Israelites' places of worship. Rashi says that Balaam is overcome by the modesty that the Israelites maintained while traveling in the desert. So...

Duration: 00:01:51


Episode 28: Chukat, Grief and Loss

6/26/2017
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In this week’s Torah portion we learn that Miriam dies She is the sibling of Aaron and Moses. A funny thing happens when Miriam dies; all of a sudden the Israelites are without water. Rabbis of our tradition have long connected Miriam with the water that the Israelites drank and without the water Israelites are in a panic and worried they are going to die of thirst. So Moses prays to God. God tells Moses to assemble the Israelites and go find a rock and order the rock to yield water. God...

Duration: 00:01:54


Episode 27: Korach - Jealousy is Destructive

6/19/2017
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Korah's Rebellion: He was Jealous and paid the ultimate price with his life

Duration: 00:01:57


Episode 26: Shelach Lecha and Courage

6/12/2017
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The lesson that we learn from this week’s Torah portion is simple. If you think you can you will and if you think you can’t then you won’t. It’s all about attitude. In this week’s Torah portion, Moses chooses twelve men to go to the Promised Land to see whether it is conquerable and inhabitable. Ten of the men come back saying that it’s not possible to conquer the land because they perceive that giants live there. Two of the men, Joshua and Caleb, come back saying, “We can do it”. They are...

Duration: 00:01:30


Episode 25: Behaalot'cha and Gratitude

6/7/2017
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Always be grateful and thankful for what you have and not the things you think you want. And you can never move forward in life if you are always looking at the past.

Duration: 00:02:14


Episode 24: Bemidbar - The Wilderness

5/26/2017
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This week we enter into the book of Numbers

Duration: 00:02:06


Episode 23: Behar-Bechukotai - You Shall Proclaim Freedom

5/19/2017
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In this week's Torah portion, Behar - Bechukotai (Leviticus 25:1-27:34)God tells Moses to speak to the Israelites and say to them when you enter the land that I assign to you the land shall observe a sabbath. God says that the Israelites can work the land for six years but on the seventh year the land gets a Shabbat of complete rest. The Torah goes further: not only is every seventh year meant to be a shmita aka a sabbatical year but after seven-time seven years the 50th year "Jubilee,"...

Duration: 00:01:39


Episode 21: Acharei -Kedoshim - Let’s talk about Love

5/1/2017
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Let’s talk about Love This week’s torah portion Acharei Mot Kedoshim. Is about love. And it contains what we often call the holiness code. A blueprint for how we as a people living in a society should strive to behave. The opening words are: And the Lord spoke to Moses saying, speak to the people of Israel, and say to them: You shall be holy; for I the Lord your God am holy. Then God explains how people can be holy. God teaches us to Judge others fairly, to not hate our neighbors in our...

Duration: 00:01:43


Episode 19: Shemini - Kosher and holiness

4/20/2017
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Why Keep Kosher?

Duration: 00:02:12


Episode 18: Passover

4/10/2017
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Every year at Passover Jews retell the story of Israel's exodus from Egypt, and their escape from slavery and oppression. Our tradition reminds us that the Exodus narrative is not just any story, but one we must retell because we are asked to believe that we were present at that moment.

Duration: 00:01:41


Episode 17: Tzav - King and the Eternal Flame Shine forever

4/4/2017
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Episode 17: Tzav (Leviticus 6:1–8:36)- King and the Eternal Flame Shine forever

Duration: 00:01:24


Episode 15: Vayakhel-Pekudei

3/24/2017
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This week we read a double portion Vayakhel-Pekudei. Moses assembles the people and tells them about the sanctuary they are to build but before that happens Moses tells them that God commands them to work six days but on the seventh day they shall rest. The seventh day is a holy day. The commandment to rest precedes the command to work. This tells us just how important it is for us to rest. God created the world in six days and rested on the seventh. For many Jews today, many Jews Shabbat...

Duration: 00:01:23


Episode 14 Ki Tisa: Shabbat and the Golden Calf

3/13/2017
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Every week, we get to renew our covenant with God and we pause to notice the sacredness of creation.

Duration: 00:04:15


Episode 13: Terumah: God's Sanctuary

3/2/2017
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Today in our modern times we as Jews don’t have one Mishkan we have synagogues and we worship God not just in the Tabernacle but wherever we might be. And where we are located can have a significant effect on the spirituality we feel in that moment. Designing a prayer space is a sacred task to be done with great care. And so too must we take care to use that sacred space to nurture our personal and communal connections with God.

Duration: 00:01:28


Episode 10: Yitro and Envy

2/12/2017
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This week’s Torah portion is Yitro and this is the Torah portion where we finally get the 10 commandments. Let’s focus on number 10 Thou shall not covet..Anything that is your neighbor’s. In other words do not be envious of anything from your neighbor’s house. This is my favorite commandment because I believe this commandment is the key to happiness Envy is the desire to have something belonging to someone else. This is an emotion, that brings out jealousy, resentment, bitterness the old...

Duration: 00:01:41


Episode 9: Beshallach Not by Prayer alone

2/6/2017
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Israelites are finally free and they are moving fast to leave Egypt. Now they find themselves at the edge of the sea. There is no way out and Pharaoh's army is not far behind. They are trapped and scared.

Duration: 00:02:01


Episode 8: Bo: Freedom for All

2/1/2017
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This week we are in Parsha Bo (Exodus 10:1−13:16)and we are at the climax of Israel’s struggle for freedom. Plague after Plague has hurt Egypt and Pharoah is willing to let some of the Israelites go free. Moses insist that none of them will go unless all of the Israelites can go. Moses wants freedom for all. He says We will go with our young and our old, we will go with our sons and our daughters. In other words, we ain’t leavin' anybody behind.

Duration: 00:01:11


Episode 7: Vaera: Failure Leads to Success

1/27/2017
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Sometimes leaders succeed with ease and sometimes they fail. In this week's Torah portion Moses fails several times before he eventually becomes the man who leads the Israelites from to freedom. When we fail it's important to learn from our failure and then to keep going.

Duration: 00:01:48

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