Tag Archives: Genesis-rav

Seventy Faces of Torah Rabbi JIm Morgan

Joseph, Pharaoh, and the Perpetual Stranger

Parashat Mikeitz (Genesis 41:1-44:17) This year, as is often the case, we read Parashat Mikeitz on Shabbat Hanukkah, a celebration of light that affirms the durability of our Jewish identity during periods of assimilation and even oppression. In one such period—of assimilation in the United States and of genocide in Europe—Muriel Rukeyser spoke about the gift of being a Jew: To be a Jew in the twentieth century Is to… Read Article →

Seventy Faces of Torah Cantor Ken Richmond

Lighting Up the Darkness One Good Point at a Time

Parshat Vayeishev (Genesis 37:1-40:23) As someone who, by nature of my profession, has the privilege of leading my congregation in prayer on a regular basis, I have long taken inspiration and instruction from a quote from the Hasidic master Rebbe Nachman of Breslov (1772-1810), who said in his teaching “Azamra”: …The one who can create these melodies by finding the good points in every Jew… is fit to be the prayer leader. The… Read Article →

Seventy Faces of Torah Rabbi Jordan Braunig

When the Holy One is a No-Show

Parshat Vayetze (Genesis 28:10-32:3) By Rabbi Jordan Braunig, Rab`14 Perhaps the most memorable words from this week’s parasha, Parashat Vayetze, are the oft-quoted words of Jacob, who having awoken from a holy vision of a ladder connecting the heavens and earth says: אכן יש ה במקום הזה ואנוכי לא ידעת Surely Adonai was in this place, and I…I didn’t know it. The line is in some ways the quintessential expression… Read Article →

Seventy Faces of Torah RabbiBeckySilverstein-100px

Bringing the Personal into the World

Parashat Toldot (Genesis 25:19-28:9) When people hear that I am a twin, they tend to immediately ask,  “are you identical or fraternal?”  Upon seeing us, it is clear that we are fraternal. The next question people ask is “who is older?”  And sometimes they will follow up with, “which one is the good twin?” The answers to these questions are linked—I am older because my sister is the bad twin…. Read Article →

Seventy Faces of Torah Daniel-Lehmann

To be a Stranger and Resident

Parashat Chayei Sarah (23:1-25:18) Toward the beginning of this week’s Torah portion, Chayei Sarah, Abraham describes himself to those with whom he lives with the phrase, “ger v’toshav anochi imachem, I am a stranger and a resident among you” (Gen. 23:4). Various Jewish commentators have interpreted this self-description as much more than just a statement about Abraham’s relationship to his immediate neighbors in the context of purchasing a burial plot… Read Article →

Seventy Faces of Torah Rabbi Shira Shazeer

Crisis Parenting: Walking Together Through Bitter and Sweet

Parshat Vayera (Genesis 18:1-22:24) Last week, my four-year-old announced gleefully, “It’s almost Kislev!” He is joyfully anticipating the next Jewish month because of my personal custom to declare the holiday-free month of Mar-Cheshvan a family-wide post-holiday sugar detox. My son’s excitement makes perfect sense – except that it is only the second day of Cheshvan. I answer somewhat incredulously, “It’s almost Kislev?” “Yes,” he says, “Only twenty-eight days!” Somehow, what… Read Article →

Community Blog Rabbi Sharon Cohen Anisfeld

“We must choose life in the world we’ve got, and plant our gardens on this side of the rainbow”

An ancient rabbinic midrash tells us that God created and destroyed many worlds before bringing this one into being. The tale speaks, I believe, to an impulse that is all too familiar. The impulse—when confronted with profound disappointment—to destroy in order to begin again. This is the impulse that overtakes God, as it were, at the very end of last week’s Torah portion. “The Lord saw how great was man’s… Read Article →

Seventy Faces of Torah Rabbi Avi Strausberg

Where Is God in the Flood?

Parshat Noach (Genesis 6:9-11:32) In the beginning, there was nothing. When God began to create the heavens and the earth, the earth being unformed and void. Except, that’s not exactly true. Because there was something. There was darkness, and there was wind, and there was water. A lot of water. God separated water from water, creating an expanse in between and God gathered all the lower waters together, and dry… Read Article →