Dirvei Torah

Noach: From Noach to Avraham

October 23, 2020 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman Category: Parsha Thoughts: Rabbi Jay Kelman
We tend to view Adam as a failure at life, unable to obey his only command from G-d. Noach was better, yet many see him as one who could have accomplished so much more than what he did. Only with the advent of Avraham do we have the person capable of bringing G-d’s message to mankind. One of the criticisms of Noach is that he did little to influence others, and ultimately had little impact on society around him. Unlike Avraham, who...
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Eiruvin 65: Time to Laugh

October 21, 2020 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman Category: Thoughts from the Daf
“Rabbi Elai said: A person is recognized through three ways: b’koso, b’kiso, u’b’kaaso” (Eiruvin 65b).   This teaching of Rav Elai, one of the more famous teachings of our Sages, advises that if one wants to get to know someone, one should look “in their cup, their pocket, and their anger” (it has a much better ring to it in the Hebrew).  Nichnas yayin yatza sod[1...
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Eiruvin 65: Davening Less, Learning More

October 19, 2020 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman Category: Thoughts from the Daf
Two of the most fundamental mitzvot are those of prayer and Talmud Torah. Observant Jews pray three times a day, and for those who daven with a minyan, the time spent going to shul, davening, and coming back home can easily take up to two hours a day - a rather startling amount of time that does not even include Shabbat and Yom Tov. There is little need to dwell on the importance of learning: Talmud Torah...
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Breisheet: Guardians of the Garden

October 16, 2020 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman Category: Parsha Thoughts: Rabbi Jay Kelman
"G-d took the man and placed him in the Garden of Eden to work it, l'ovdah, and watch it, l'shomrah" (Breisheet 2:15). A perfect world beckons. Everything is "very good" and man, as the centre of creation, is free to enjoy the fruits of G-d's labour. He is to “fill the earth and conquer it; have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, and every beast...
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Shmini Atzeret: A Dual Holiday

October 09, 2020 By: Rabbi Jay Kelman Category: Holiday Thoughts
The Jewish holidays have two distinct themes. The shalosh regalim, three pilgrim festivals of Pesach, Shavuot and Sukkot, occurring at key agricultural seasons, are a time to reflect on our material blessings, specifically in the land of Israel. Concurrently, these same holidays commemorate the formative historical events in the founding of our nation, affording an opportunity to reflect on the mission of the Jewish people. Rosh...
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