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Choose To Be Happy

"In memory of my father in law Matisyahu ben Chaim Refael Poliakoff and his father Chaim Refael ben Menachem Mendel, whose Yohrtzeits we are commemorating this week. May Hashem give them a lichtigen Gan Eden." There are two stark admonishments in the Torah, in our...

Going Casual

The Torah tells us in stark terms what the outcome will be if we do not live up to specific expectations. The recurring theme is that we must not do what is described as ‘going with G-d ‘b’keri’ or indifference - casualness. “If you will be indifferent to Me; I too...

The Cry of The Shofar

I recently came across the ‘tzavaa’, or the ethical will of Rav Menachem Mann Shach OBM, famed Rosh Yeshivah of Ponevez. This document was written when the Rav was over one hundred years old. The Rosh Yeshiva reflects on the whole of his long life and the possibility...

The Baal Shem Tov’s Message

Shortly after moving to Israel I was given the opportunity to travel with a group to Mezibuz in the Ukraine. The purpose of the trip was to spend Shabbos in the city of the great Baal Shem Tov and to pray at his graveside. This was a spiritual trip and I was...