by Joel Rich
How should community leadership (Rabbi/Tovei hair) think about the trade-off between number of attendees and appropriateness of timing when setting time for slichot (including PM)?
I recently heard a story that the chafetz chaim prayed that he die al kiddush hashem. Is this true? How do you understand such a prayer?
- Rabbi Efroni Schlesinger -Building Your Hashkafa- Intro 1: Learning Ideas Through Your Intellect
Machshava is important! First in a series—what is the role of sechel (cognition?) in understanding truth?
- Rabbi Judah Kerbel-Do I *Have* To Do Teshuva?
You can always do tshuva; don’t judge yourself darkly; believe in yourself and never give up (HT – Jim Valvano).
- Rabbi Dovid Gottlieb-“I’ve Fallen and I CAN Get Up!” Spiritual Resilience and the Essence of Teshuva
Is tshuva a mitzvah or an opportunity? How does vidui fit in?
- Rabbi Chayim Soloveichik-Shmita 5782 – shiur 1
Shmita discussion including: Sfichin; Kdushat haaretz; Otzar beit din; Yvul nochri; and Heter mchira.
- Rabbi Mordechai Benhaim-Tur & Bet Yosef (Siman 582) – “Hamelech Hakadosh & Hamelech Hamishpat”
History and hashkafa of hamelech hakadosh and hamelech mishpat.
- Rabbi Hershel Schachter-Shiur Pesicha for Meseches Bava Basra
Shutfim come in two flavors—by agreement (usual) and by force (inheritance, communities).
- Rabbi Dovid Miller-Shmitta -practical overview
Discussion of first part of the year’s shmita issues and approaches (sfichin; non-central Israel; otsar beit din; non-Jewish ownership; and taking into account legitimacy vs. desirability). Technical analysis supplied.
- Rabbi Daniel Z. Feldman-Introduction to Bava Basra 1: the Foundations of Halakhic Ethics
The lesson of the first Mishna of Bava Batra being first is hakol kminhag hamedina. In this case minhag reflects halachic values in communal interactions (as set by the rabbis and marketplace).
- Rabbi Yehoshua Grunstein-Ashkenazic Slichot- Is saying “But We’re Suffering” not Immature?
Kshei oref, vidui and sacrifice can all have positive and negative connotations. We need to reflect on both these elements during this time of year.
- Parashat Shoftim with Rav Dovid Gottlieb
Parsha thoughts including: Does lo tasur mean rabbinic leadership is wrong or we just act that way?; The king as a role model; Judging oneself; Need for constant growth; and Not being paralyzed by past sins
- Rabbi Ari Shvat (Chwat)-“Being Social Helps My Spirituality!”
R’Kook on becoming spiritual through others [imitato dei]. Giving is not at your own expense in the long run.
- Rabbi Assaf Bednarsh-Bava Batra shiur 1 (יסוד דין היזק ראיה)
Start of a new zman. Issues include: Is hezek riah an issue of monetary damages or neighborly relations and is local practice definitive or is there a minimum level of tzniut.
- Rav Asher Weiss-ריבית בדברים ובטובת הנאה
Where does tovat hanaah fit in the ribit spectrum (less than actual but more than devarim?)
Is saying thank you OK? (Nowadays it’s perfunctory!)
General rule: Prohibited if people perceive they’ve received something?
- Rabbi Netanel Wiederblank-Contemporary Lessons from Ben Sorer
Parsha lessons including: Being holy; Knowing HKB”H; Understanding the importance of our message (content and communications); and “It takes a village to raise good children.”
- Rabbi Dovi Fischer-40 Halachic Topics: Aseres Y’mei Teshuva
Elul topics including: Proper tshuva; Minhagim of asseret ymei tshuva; Tfila inserts; and Slichot.
- Rabbi Moshe Taragin-Six Stories of HaRav Amital and Their Lessons For Life
R’Amital stories and lessons: Crying baby (national responsibility); Rebbi for thief (diversity); Treif or human flesh (humanity); Jumping from fire (Importance of mission); and White shirt (Less can be more).
- Rabbi Jesse Horn-Gemara Methodology: The Kuf HaDimayon
Examples where the Talmud makes a comparison with a kaf (hirhur kdibur). How seriously do we take it?
- Rabbi Michael Taubes-Parshas Ki Seitzei The Beis HaMikdash: A House that Must Be on a Mountain
The Brisker rav on kdushat beit mikdash interrelating with being a recognized mountain high place.
- Rabbi Aryeh Lebowitz-Q and A with RTC 9th Graders
Q&A including: Kashrut standards (symbols, Starbucks, vegan); Nivil peh; Onaat dvarim; Paint ball; Injuring a parent; Mishneh Torah; Going to the beach (clubs); Requiring vaccine; and Learnng mussar.
- Rabbi Dovid Miller-Shiur Klali: Introduction to Shutfus
Shiur klali—Are partnerships 100% ownership of half of the field which is yet TBD or 100% each weak ownership of the whole field (me – double slit experiment pre-observer?). Is the “partnership” of joint inheritors the same as on entered into by partners?
- Rabbi Mark Glass-What is a Good Jew? The Thought of R. Lichtenstein and its Relevance to Elul
First in a series—focus on tshuva “to” vs .tshuva “from”. The “to” here is more universalist as in the lavda in lavda alshamra. We need to be involved in yishuvo shel olam.
My 2¢–R’Aharon was extremely clear and understandable in his writing.
- Rabbi Dr. Aaron Rakeffet-Rothkoff-How We Should Relate to Gentiles: Total Unconditional Hatred versus Admiration When Justified. Helping The Woman Who Falls on the Street to Get Up
The Klausenberger rebbi and R’M Klein were not too high on non-bnai brit. R’Rakeffet feels it was due to their holocaust experiences. Then on to ngiah issues.
- Rabbi Assaf Bednarsh-Bava Batra shiur 2 (מחיצת הכרם שנפרצה)
Discussion of other implications of hezek riah being pure monetary damages or an existential problem (chazaka, minhag and mechilla).
Then on to who do we blame for klaim (wheat field or vineyard owner) and discussion of garmi vs. grama.
- Rabbi Dovid Gottlieb-Practical Shemitta: What You Need to Know for Your Kitchen and Garden (part 2)
R’Gottlieb favors otsar beit din and especially the otsar haaretz approach. Discussion of how to treat otsar beit din products and some practical gardening issues.
- Dr. Marc Shapiro-Great Rabbinic Thinkers_ Rabbi Saul Lieberman (Part 1)
First in a series R’S Lieberman was a gaon with unique memory ability. He was related to the Chazon Ish.
Interesting discussion of what makes a gadol—it’s not just cognitive ability.
- Dr. Daniel Rynhold-Repentance in Modern Jewish Thought (Part 1)
First in a series. Rabbeinu Yonah wrote the first theology of tshuva (repentance). His sharei tshuva provides a fairly dark psychology of tshuva (e.g., griot, regret, emotional turmoil, asceticism and punishment).
- Dr. Marc Shapiro-Great Rabbinic Thinkers_ Rabbi Saul Lieberman (Part 2)
Review of his early yeshiva years, marriages and introduction to the academic study of Talmud. His response to the Chazon Ish indicated his understanding the academic approach assisted in understanding Chazal’s intent (me – old debate—does it matter what the Rambam meant or only how the baalei mesorah understood him).
- Rabbi Ari Shvat (Chwat)-Shmitta- A Concise Review Of All the Practical Laws For Your Kitchen and Yard
Philosophy and practice of shmita. Some practical home gardening tips. Consumer prioritization: otsar beit din; hydroponics; outer parts of aretz; heter mechira; foreign products; and local non-bnai brit. Handling of otsar beit din also discussed.
- Rabbi Etan Schnall-The Din of the Second Day of Rosh Hashanah
Pep talk to new YU guys. HKB”H solves an infinite number of simultaneous equations (how we each impact others around us), that’s what the second day of Rosh Hashana is about.
- Rabbi Michael Taubes-Rav Soloveitchik on Being an Effective Educator
Part of R’YBS’s Behalotcha drasha—why was Moshe Rabbeinu’s reaction to bnai yisrael so negative at kivrot hataava but not at chet haegel? If you can, listen here to the originalhttps://www.yutorah.org/search/?s=soloveitchik+behalotcha&teacher=80186&sort=1 .
Please direct any informal comments to [email protected].