Determining Who is Deserving

Headshot of Gabriel Botnik
5778
by Rabbi Gabriel Botnik
posted on June 9, 2018
Torah Reading
Haftarah Reading
According to the Fortune 500, 72% of CEOs are white men. And yet, white men make up just 38% of the U.S. population. And 58% of CEOs are over six feet tall, while only 14.5% of the population can boast such stature. Meanwhile, less than 5% of CEOs are female and only 2 (that’s 2 individuals, not 2%) are women of color. Read more...

Holy Forgetting

Headshot of Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson
5773
by Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson
posted on May 30, 2013
Torah Reading
Haftarah Reading
Here's a word that you rarely hear in a rabbinic sermon, unless I suppose you are a member of Valley Beth Shalom and Rabbi Harold Schulweis is speaking. The word is: Hyperthymesia: the documented condition in which a person is incapable of forgetting any detail of anything that ever happened to them. While there are times when some of us might wish for greater recall then we have most of the time, people who suffer from this condition actually suffer terribly. Read more...

A Bug's Life

Headshot of Rabbi Edward Feinstein
5772
by Rabbi Edward Feinstein
posted on June 11, 2012
Torah Reading
Haftarah Reading
"As Gregor Samsa awoke one morning from uneasy dreams, he found himself transformed in his bed into a gigantic insect. He was lying on his hard, as it were armor-plated, back and when he lifted his head a little he could see his dome-like brown belly divided into stiff arched segments on top of which the bed-quilt could hardly keep in position and was about to slide off completely. His numerous legs, which were pitifully thin compared to the rest of his bulk, waved helplessly before his eyes. "'What has happened to me?' he thought. But it was no dream." Read more...

From Grasshoppers to Giants

Headshot of Rabbi Cheryl Peretz
5770
by Rabbi Cheryl Peretz
posted on May 29, 2010
Torah Reading
Haftarah Reading
As a young child attending day camp at the local JCC, I had a counsellor who used to spend hours entertaining us with her ability to catch grasshoppers mid-jump. She would scoop them up by two of their legs and hold them up, showing off their stomachs. Hands quick enough to catch the hoppers were certainly noteworthy, but what fascinated me even more was the long springboard-like bounce of the jumping grasshoppers whose ability to keep jumping would certainly have surpassed the commercial energizer bunny. Read more...

The Power of Perception

Headshot of Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson
5769
by Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson
posted on June 8, 2009
Torah Reading
Haftarah Reading
The set-up: Moses instructs twelve spies, one for each of Israel's tribes, to investigate the characteristics of the land the people are about to enter. They travel throughout the land of Israel during the course of forty days, and they return to the camp bearing an enormous load of the fruit of the land. Yet when they return, their testimony is contradictory. On the one hand, they assert that the land is one which "flows with milk and honey," a land bounteous and fertile. Read more...