Recommended Torah Commentaries

Ben Bag Bag said, “Turn and turn about in it [the Torah] for everything is in it; and within it you shall look, and grow old and gray over it, and not stir from it; for there is no better portion for you than this.” Every sentence, every word, every letter, every space – holy […]

THE ORCHARD

Four entered the orchard: Rabbi Akiva and Rabbi Elisha and Ben Azzai and Ben Zoma. Ben Zoma gazed and died, Rabbi Elisha cut down the plantings, Ben Azzai gazed and was harmed. Only Rabbi Akiva emerged in peace. THE ORCHARD by Yochi Brandes Translated from the Hebrew by Daniel Libenson ~ Review by Cindy The […]

THIS GRATEFUL HEART – PRAYER AND POEMS

  Prayer reminds me of the simple truths. We are surrounded by holiness. By beauty. By wonder and awe. At the same time, we must live as it is offered us, sometimes messy, sometimes challenging, potentially painful, potentially traumatic, a mixed bag of joy and sorrow. No matter what, our lives are enriched by prayer. […]

IF ALL THE SEAS WERE INK

What a healthy relationship to time, viewing it not as a mark of age, but as an opportunity to grow in wisdom. If I learned a page a day, then instead of resigning myself to being one day older, I could aspire to be one day wiser. if all the seas were ink ~ A […]

Art of REVELATION by Yoram Raanan

“Few artists in the Jewish world capture the beauty of holiness, and avodah [worship]…than Yoram Raanan.” ~ Rabbi Jonathan Sacks Raanan’s paintings add a dimension of renewal, revival and hope. His paintings create a bridge between past and future, the individual and community and between physical and spiritual. ~ Nurit Siris Bank –  Curator, Researcher, Lecturer […]

THE ROAD TO RESILIENCE From Chaos to Celebration

You have suffered a change that alters the very system that you live by. No wonder you feel like you world is in chaos. You can’t cope or figure life out anymore. You don’t believe that anybody can help you, or even understands you…it is foolish to imagine you would not be changed by grief…You’re […]

THE COMMITTED LIFE

A long life is not good enough, but a good life is long enough. THE COMMITTED LIFE PRINCIPLES FOR GOOD LIVING FROM OUR TIMELESS PAST by Rebbetzin Esther Jungreis ~ review by Cindy There is a charming story about an exchange that took place between a rabbi and a little boy. “Tell me, my son,” […]

THE BIBLICAL HERITAGE SERIES

While the universal messages of the Bible echoes around the world, the text, in all its hundreds of translations, always speaks in a particular idiom – that of Israel’s nature and agriculture. – Nogah Hareuveni THE BIBLICAL HERITAGE SERIES 1. Nature in Our Biblical Heritage 2. Tree and Shrub in Our Biblical Heritage 3. Desert […]

THANK YOU GOD FOR MAKING ME A WOMAN

Women who have the ability to emulate G-d by bringing children into the world and wear multiple hats on any given day are truly unique and beyond measure. A woman is her husbands’ confidante, the mother of their children, the family psychiatrist, the family doctor, interior decorator, educational director, chef and so on… Women have […]

HEALING OF THE SOUL, HEALING OF THE BODY

The truth is: When you are sinking, when you are totally wrapped in your own fear and pain, it is still possible to break out. God’s Loving Presence surrounds you at all times; God shares your pain as only an infinite consciousness can. Hashem feels your hurt, kisses your wound compassionately. The divine steadfast love […]

OPEN HEART – by Elie Wiesel

I belong to a generation that has often felt abandoned by G-d and betrayed by mankind. And yet, I believe that we must not give up on either. Was it yesterday – or long ago – that we learned how human beings have been able to attain perfection in cruelty? That for killers, the torturers, […]

AND THE SEA IS NEVER FULL

What profit hath a man of all his labour which he taketh under the sun? One generation passeth away, and another generation cometh: but the earth abideth forever. The sun also riseth, and the sun goeth down, and hasteth to his place where he arose. The wind goeth toward the south, and turneth about unto […]

NIGHT – Elie Wiesel

“If in my lifetime I was to write only one book, this would be the one. Just as the past lingers in the present, all my writings after Night, including those that deal with Biblical, Talmudic, or Hasidic themes, profoundly bear its stamp, and cannot be understood if one has not read this very first […]

VIOLINS OF HOPE – Violins of the Holocaust

It’s often past belief that I, that I alone of all the millions who had come to grief, that I without a scratch climbed from the vale of bones. At times I can’t imagine it, it’s past belief. Perhaps I too was burned to ash with all the others, like them, just like the rest […]

IN THE NARROW PLACES – Daily Inspiration For The Three Weeks

Suffering humanizes us. Ignoring suffering dehumanizes us… Attunement to suffering makes us more compassionate. It also helps us appreciate where we come from and all that it took to get us to where we are. We have to remind ourselves that we don’t diminish our happiness when we spend a day or a few weeks […]