Deiah veDibur - Information & Insight

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27 Marcheshvan 5778 - November 16, 2017 | Mordecai Plaut, director | Toldos-5778 Published Weekly

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At The Center of the Universe
At The Center of the Universe
by Mordechai Plaut

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Keren Kayemet Demands Work on Shabbos

Keren Kayemet (KKL) has been in the news lately, as there are proposals to obligate it to pay regular taxes to the State of Israel. The issue has caused a lot of controversy.


Seemingly Innocent Courses with Illicit Intentions

Rabbonim and educators are warning against a string of so-called educational projects which are seemingly innocent but actually dangerous, initiated by objectionable bodies. Their offensive objection is to inject adverse scholastic concepts in gathering data about weak students in order to steer them off to other educational frameworks and streams which are considered shatnez and kilayim grafting, so to speak, streams which had been forbidden by all of our Torah leaders.


On the Draft, the Sephardim and the Dropouts

HaRav Englander is the rosh yeshiva of Beis Shmaya, a yeshiva whose student body is mainly Sephardic. At a recent gathering of alumni, he gave a talk that addressed many of the burning issues of the day. As the Ashkenazic rosh yeshiva of a prominent, high level Sephardic yeshiva, he has an important perspective. Following are excerpts from that talk.

This past year, there has been much publicity about the draft decree, and the shmad decree etc. It our duty of relate to this issue and discuss its implications.



From Our Archives

Masters and Servants of the Heart: A Shmuess for Parshas Toldos

By HaRav Sholom Schwadron zt'l

"And may Elokim give you from the dew of the Heavens and from the fat of the land, and much corn and oil" (Bereishis 27:28).

Rashi explains that the use of the Name Elokim, which denotes the trait of Divine judgment, implies that in Yaakov's case, receiving the blessings is contingent upon deserving them. "To Eisov however," Rashi continues, "he said, `Your dwelling should be among the fat [places] of the land'; whether righteous or wicked, He will give this to you. Shlomo Hamelech learned from Yaakov when he built the Beis Hamikdosh and prayed that in the case of Jews who come to pray there, `You should give each man in accordance with all his ways, according to Your knowledge of his heart' (Melochim I 8:39), for a Jew will acknowledge Divine justice [even if his request is not granted] and will not argue, whereas for gentiles who lack faith he said, `And You shall hear from Heaven . . . and do whatever the stranger calls to You' (ibid. posuk 43). Give him what he asks for, whether he deserves it or not, so that he shouldn't complain against You."

Many of the Rishonim are amazed at this. Were the blessings to have been given the other way around, with Yaakov receiving Eisov's blessing to be maintained from the fat of the land whether righteous or not, Klal Yisroel would not have suffered so much in the course of the terrible exile and all our troubles R'l. However, Yitzchok did not give the blessings this way and Chazal stress that the principle governing Klal Yisroel is, "And You should give each man in accordance with all his ways." Why is this?

Self Diagnosis for Ear Problems

adapted from an article in Bayit Ne'eman by N. Katzin

Sixty percent of visits to a pediatrician deal with ear examinations and infections. In a great deal of them, we could have spared ourselves and the doctor the effort by some elementary examination into the ear, on our own, if we only had the equipment and some basic know-how.

Preparing For The Future: Taking the Panic Out of Reading

by R' Zvi Zobin

Mr. and Mrs. Druk explained that their son Chaim's reading was very inaccurate. The initial screening showed that Chaim knew the alef-bais and vowels well, but when he read a text he had never seen before -- wow! his parents were correct. Chaim's version of the text seemed to be very different from the version printed in the book.

"You see!" Mr. Druk commented sadly, "Chaim's reading is really bad."

Rabbi Reuven leaned back in his chair and smiled at Mr. Druk. "Actually, Chaim can read perfectly accurately." Mr. Druk raised his eyebrows in disbelief.



Av, 5765 - Kislev 5766 (August-December 2005)

May-July, 2005


The Message of an Earthquake

A Mission to Spread Daas Torah

Looking for the Best in Yiddishkeit

Can I - Should I?

The Immorality of Palestinian Combatants and Noncombatants

More Editorials . . .

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