Prove It – Chanukah, the flame of my soul
“How did you know that he was the one?” my friend asked me, shortly after I decided to marry this guy whom I had only known for two and half months. “It’s a totally unprecedented knowledge,” I told her. “Though I can tell you that he lines up perfectly with everything on my must-have list of crucial traits that I was looking for in a husband, I really can’t explain it to you.”
Parashat Beraishit And the Power of Prayer
The beginning is epic- a silent cacophony of swirling, dark, primordial abyss. The wind of G-d hovers over the waters, and whispers the potential of what could be. From deep within (or beyond?) this primordial chaos, a voice is heard. “Let there be light.” Boom! The words crystallize into light. And so continues the story of the very beginning, Hashem speaks and brings every detail of the known (and unknown) universe into being.
In Parshat Bereishit, we relive the creation.
What Your Mind Can Learn from Your Hairdo- Sephirat Haomer
Whatever you do, don’t think about the green lizard. Think about anything, just not the green lizard. What are you thinking about? The green lizard of course! Just with the word “not” in front of it.
Now think about the pink butterfly. Where’s the green lizard?
The Power of the Silent Drop- Sephirat HaOmer
Akiva’s animosity was uncontrollable. “If I could just lay my hands on one of those Torah scholars, “he thought,” I would give him a beating he wouldn’t forget. I would bite him like a donkey, whose bite breaks bones.”
Pesach and the Profound Search for a Piece of Pretzel
I love to behold it. From my balcony I watch as all of my neighbors begin to make their uncharacteristically high number of trips to the dumpster daily. Men, women and children are seen in the streets, arms overflowing with stuff to throw away, and schlepping huge bags of clothes to the donation bins. My favorite part is the outlandish-looking truck that comes booming down our little street in Tsfat for its annual pickup of oversized things- a worn out couch, an inefficient dryer, that lamp that has been half-broken for months. This is the time, when we as a nation roll up our proverbial sleeves and clear out all of the things that have been overcrowding our homes and our minds.
Rosh Chodesh Nissan and the Birthday of Rebbe Nachman
It was on my first date with my husband, about 20 minutes after I had met him that I dropped the question- “So… do you feel connected to Rebbe Nachman?” My husband replied that yes, he had been to Uman for the first time just a few months earlier and now he was sold- forever bound to this powerful soul. “Excellent,” I thought, as I checked that major criteria off of my proverbial list of must-haves.
Purim and the Chance to Awaken
I need to tell you a story. About 2,000 years ago the Jews had been expelled from the Holy Land, and found themselves living in the capital of Persia, Shushan. The king of the Persian Empire, Achashverosh, had his beloved wife, Vashti, executed at the very party that he had thrown to celebrate his marriage to her. The beautiful and pure Esther, then 40 years old, gets crowned queen of this world empire. Years she is in the palace, refusing to tell anyone her background, wondering what she, a righteous Jewish woman is doing, married to this capricious, drunkard king.
Hitbodidut- Finding My Center
Watch a fascinating video about Hitbodidut (Jewish Meditation) and learn how you can improve your life & connect to G-D on a deeper level: I had just landed in Newark airport, and after the hour-long train ride, found myself in New York’s Penn Station amidst hundreds of travelers crisscrossing, each in their own trajectory, speeding to their destinations. Many held briefcases, or pulled small suitcases, and had their morning cups of coffee in to-go cups, looking straight ahead, wearing serious faces, to get to their destinations faster. To smile at a stranger is dangerous when you’re on the clock- time is money, baby.
True Harmony- Finding the Good Points
I had just finished giving a lecture to the faculty at my school about how the perceptions we have of our students impacts them, when the superintendent approached me. He was skeptical, and challenged me, “What about Roxanne?” Roxanne was wearing all black, thick black eyeliner, and a “bullring” nose hoop. She sat by herself at a nearby table, in the cafeteria, looking at her phone. I couldn’t back down now, so though I was palpably nervous, I said, “I’ll go talk to her.” I walked over and sat down. She looked at me, and immediately started asking what I was doing, using more superlatives than any other type of word. I said, “If you answer a few of my questions, I’ll buy you a soda.”
Did you know Michael Jordan didn’t make the first basketball team he tried out for? Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known as Dr. Seuss, had his first book rejected by 27 different publishers. Oprah was fired from her first TV anchor job for being ‘too emotionally invested in her stories.’ History is rife with examples of people who made it big, but only after much trial, tribulation and rejection.
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