Genral Machshava

SOLO WRESTLING by Rabbi Avi Shafran

It has become common in some corners to speak of �wrestling with G-d,� a phrase intended to evoke Jacob�s violent encounter with an angel, after which G-d told him: �You have struggled with elohim and man and overcome� (Genesis, 32:30). The Hebrew word for �struggle� forms the root of the new name given Jacob at that moment � Yisrael

Great Expectations

Thoughts of consequence can sometimes arise from the most mundane experiences, even a headache.

Opening the medicine cabinet one day, I was struck by a sticker on a prescription container.

�Not for use by pregnant women,� it read.

�And why not?� part of my aching head wondered.


Elul: An Exciting Outlook by Rabbi Yosef Tropper

It is well known that in previous generations, when the month of Elul was announced on Shabbos Mivarchim, it would elicit an emotional reaction. I have heard from numerous older people that members of their shul would shudder and faint upon hearing the words �Rosh Chodesh Elul�.

Nowadays we are not so far from the shuddering and fear! Ma

An Orphan In Shul by Rabbi Avi Shafran

Ther's an orphan in shul.

Everybody knows him, or thinks they do. And yet very few people pay him much heed.

He has quite a family history, too, descended as he is from illustrious personages. A compelling personal story too.

His name is Aleinu.

Yes, that Aleinu, the paragraphs recited at th

The Price of Exclusion by Jonathan Rosenblum

An acquaintance accosted me recently. "Whatever happened to ahavas Yisrael?" he wanted to know. While I sometimes doff my defender-of-the-faithful hat at the gym, I assumed he was talking about Emmanuel and dutifully trotted out all my proofs that no ethnic discrimination was involved. Though Emmanuel was -- as I had guessed -- the impetus for his question,

How to Hype Up Your Life by Rabbi Baruch Leff for AISH.com

How to hype up your life.

by Rabbi Boruch Leff It was billed as one of the most important decisions for America. It was followed for months, weeks, days, and hours.

What was this major decision looming that would shake America to its core? A declaration of war? A major peace treaty signed? A major economic policy shift?

Concentric Circles by Rabbi Avi Shafran

I used to pass the fellow each morning as I walked up Broadway in lower Manhattan on my way to work. He would stand at the same spot and hold aloft, for the benefit of all passers-by, one of several poster-board-and-marker signs he had made. One read "I love you!" Another: "You are wonderful!" The words of the others escape me, but the sentiments were simi

How Will We Be Remembered by Jonathan Rosenblum

Recently, I attended a speech by the person to whom I invariably turn whenever I need advice. His subject was the human relations aspects of creating a successful organizational team.

My friend drew liberally on his own experience founding and running a number of highly successful institutions, as well as some failed ones the latter providing