I was shopping in Shoprite today, where all the chicken is from Empire. I took a minute to examine the packaging and confirm that there is someone out there who prefers the novice (first time giving to shechita I think) to KAJ in hashgocho. Of course, Chasidim might. But which Chasid is buying Empire chickens, which […]

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This past week was the Agudah – virtual-  convention. In my adolescence I remember that the convention had a polemical side to it . There were barbs launched at Modern Orthodox leaders- sometimes in response to barbs launched from that community. Rav Gifter would get up and speak to the importance of Bnei Torah and the growth of […]

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In a post in my lesser touted, more personal blog space, I noted that my late father disliked it when people smacked their Hoshanos against the floor with force or even anger. It is a mystical minhag of the nevi’im and since its meaning is sublime why would you do it angrily?  He would say that this shows people’s […]

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Rav Schwab ZtL used to say that since we are in the minority vis a vis other communities, we tend to assimilate to their minhagim. Recently I encountered a few circumstances in which our minhagim have escaped recognition. An article in a Queens, NY paper mentioned blowing shofar twice a day in Elul as an […]

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  Was it appropriate to celebrate the birthday of a deceased ” gadol b’yisrael”? In the Orthodox world of today an event such as the shalosh seudos of 2008 can only be found among the Lubavich tzibur. No one else refers to the birthday of a deceased individual as a milestone. King Solomon placed the […]

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  We previously talked about the area where TO and TIDE would be competing for the same mind.  We need to re-examine the idea that TIDE would be less adamant about telling the individual to sanctify his talents to the study of the Torah. This has been done before by Rav Schwab z”l  who wrote […]

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Before I put forth the relevance of TIDE to today’s circumstances, I would like to break into a short history of our community and kollel. I also hope to touch upon the stylistic differences in learning that once existed- and have left their mark. An Important Conversation with Rabbi Neumann in Lakewood Rav Breuer had […]

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  This past Shabbos was the 212th birthday of Rav Hirsch. If there is value in celebrating the birth of one who no longer lives, it is in this that we can discuss that person’s life without discussing the death. ( Simon Ravidovich calls the Jewish people with our tendency to focus on the  loss […]

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Just some quick Pesach thoughts from a guest contributor. In memory of Rabbi Pluchok sl Rav Hirsch points out that the answer given to the wicked son is not addressing him at all. Rather the father exclaims, “If he were there he wouldn’t have been redeemed!” The father isn’t addressing this child? Why not? Rav […]

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People, even well-meaning Jews, students of the Torah, consider these portions the least stimulating and the least relevant section of the Torah. It is not like the ethical or legal areas of the Torah that helped shape the conscience and the values of all societies it has touched to date. It is technical and does […]

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