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Unless otherwise noted, "This week's Parsha" comprises articles taken from contributors to the website.  We show the original author's name here, so that proper attribution is given.  For the sake of brevity, footnotes cited in the original author's writings are omitted from this website.  If you need to see the citations, please refer to the original articles on the website.

A Lonely Nation

Are you a statistics person? Do you remember the numbers you read; can you retain and, when necessary, retrieve them? Or are you more the graphics type, who relates to visuals of pies and colored blocks and zigzaggy lines to make a point? I like anecdotes, little stories that (as someone once put memorably) when you add them up, you have data.

No matter, you’ve seen or heard something like this before: Israel is .000001% of the earth’s land mass. Israel (Jews) amount to point oh-oh-oh-oy-vey of the world population. 45% of the United Nations’ condemnations have been directed at Israel.

Read more: A Lonely Nation

Use Your Brain!

"Dad," the young boy asked his father.

"Yes, son?"

"Why is the sky blue?"

"I don't know, son."

"Why is the grass green?"

"I don't know, son."

"How do birds fly?"

"I don't know, son."

So it went on, the son asking questions and the father responding, "I don't know, son."

One day, the son said to his father, "Dad, I hope you don't mind my asking you all these questions all the time."

Read more: Use Your Brain!

The Road to Heaven


The Talmud doesn't believe in "equal time." According to this ancient repository of Jewish wisdom, if a good guy and a bad guy are running for office, you should give the good guy all the publicity and ignore the bad guy. Don't even mention his name.

The Talmud has a source for its bias -- the even more ancient Book of Proverbs by King Solomon, which states, "The mention of the righteous should be for blessing, and the name of the wicked shall rot" (Proverbs 10:7). Quoting this verse, the Talmud rules that "it is forbidden to name one's child after a wicked person."

Which begs the question: Why, then, is this week's Torah reading (Numbers 16-18) named "Korach", after the man who led a mutiny against Moses and Aaron? If the Torah doesn't want us naming our kids Pharaoh, Joseph Vissarionovich or Captain Hook, why does it name one of its own sections after an unrepentant sinner, a person whose actions so endangered the very existence of the people of Israel that G-d made the earth swallow him up so that he "descended alive into the abyss"?

Read more: The Road to Heaven

In our thoughts


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Kiddush Club

Date: Feb 20 '16
Sponsor: Regina Novak
In honour of yahrzeit of beloved husband Morris Novak (AH)

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