By: Sara Brandes | June 14, 2019

reflection by Rabbi Daniel Silverstein

“The Eternal One spoke to Moses, saying: Have two silver trumpets made; make them of hammered work. They shall serve you to summon the community and to set the divisions in motion” (Numbers 10:2)

The following verses state that these trumpets are blown to assemble the people and to signal their movement. They are blown in times of distress and conflict, and times of joy and celebration, to evoke Divine remembrance and connect the people to the Eternal.

The Maggid of Mezritch, the great leader of the second generation of the Chasidic movement, bases one of his most important teachings on this verse (see Or Torah 134). The trumpets, in Hebrew are called chatzotzrot. The Maggid, in a typically...

By: Sara Brandes | June 14, 2019

reflection by Genevieve Greinetz, rabbinic intern
 
It is amazing how much depth we can glean when we sit with one seemingly small detail that arises in meditation. During a recent three-week retreat, I sat with the miniscule details of indecision. My usual indecision was wildly magnified to the point where deciding what to eat for breakfast was.. devastatingly overwhelming. You know the elevated, even chaotic sensitivity that arises in retreat—you might find yourself crying because the steam hovering over your coffee is astounding. I found myself having a nervous freak out encountering the treacherous decision between eggs & oatmeal.
 
As I sat in the hall later that day, indecision arose again. Would I go to yoga or take a walk?...

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By: Sara Brandes | June 14, 2019

reflection by Genevieve Greinetz, rabbinic intern

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By: Sara Brandes | May 12, 2019

By: Genevieve Greinetz, Rabbinic Intern


In scouring over Parshat Emor, I found myself skipping over the horrendous parts of it.  The parsha begins by relaying that all people who “have a defect” are not allowed to offer sacred food offerings to Gd. The text then offers a list of conditions that disable someone from offering food.  At first, I skipped over it; labeled it painful, inappropriate, shameful, not to be spoken of.

My instinctive reaction to the darkness in this parsha parallels my initial reaction to pain and difficulty within, to render it invisible.  But when our goal is self-love and acceptance, we must see the whole gamut of who we are.

As Art Green writes, “We are Jews and this is (our) Torah. The text will not s...

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