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PARSHA POSTS: VAYECHI
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Dec 21, 2018, 5:18 PM
Freedom to be our best
Visiting a cellblock in a Northern Israel prison as part of our law enforcement seminar last week offered a rare opportunity to converse with inmates. I asked two of the representative leaders of Hamas and Islamic Jihad, “How is your...
Dec 21, 2018, 10:49 AM
A Prayer for My Children — and for Sheikh Sayakh
The leader of the Israeli Bedouin village of Al-Araqib is going to jail on Tuesday for 'trespassing' on his own land
Dec 21, 2018, 10:47 AM
Accompanied by God
This week's portion, with the deaths of Jacob and Joseph, marks the end of a family saga and of an era. This is also Jacob's swansong, the end of a long, mostly unhappy life of the Bible's main tragic...
Dec 21, 2018, 10:41 AM
Surviving survival — Reuven’s blessing
Every few months there is a surge of social distress and accompanying commentary, addressing the problems of Jewish population growth. Worries abound about assimilation, low birth rate, intermarriage, lack of identification with religious values, and so forth. Great ideas...
Dec 21, 2018, 7:48 AM
Heal the Victims; Don’t Sacrifice Them to a Cause
We are witness to an era of upheaval. Time-honored norms of appropriate behavior are being challenged. There are negative aspects to this disruption, such as the re-emergence of overt anti-Semitism on the left and right, after being dormant for so...
Dec 21, 2018, 1:58 AM
The Promised Land (Genesis 47:28-50:26) This week we will read the last section of Genesis. We will read about the end of Jacob's life, and how he asked Joseph to swear not to bury him in Egypt but in the...
Dec 20, 2018, 10:02 PM
Parshat Vayechi: What Happens Next?
Parshat Vayechi tells us about the final moments of Ya'acov's life and his blessings to his children. The first verse tells us, “And Yaakov lived in the land of Egypt for seventeen years, and Yaakov’s days, the years of his...
Dec 20, 2018, 3:58 PM
Parashat Vayechi: Learning from subversive narratives
So blessed them that day, saying, “By you shall Israel invoke blessings, saying: God make you like Ephraim and Manasseh.” Thus he put Ephraim before Manasseh. וַיְבָ֨רֲכֵ֜ם בַּיּ֣וֹם הַהוּא֮ לֵאמוֹר֒ בְּךָ֗ יְבָרֵ֤ךְ יִשְׂרָאֵל֙ לֵאמֹ֔ר יְשִֽׂמְךָ֣ אֱלֹהִ֔ים כְּאֶפְרַ֖יִם וְכִמְנַשֶּׁ֑ה וַיָּ֥שֶׂם...
Dec 20, 2018, 3:40 PM
The elaborate funeral Joseph gave his father may shed light on the mysterious talmudic claim that Jacob never died
Dec 20, 2018, 2:21 PM
The future of the past
When Joseph's brothers repent of the wrong they did him, they model how people can change themselves, with a new moral vision for mankind