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Weekly Email by Rabbi Moss

Thousands of people enjoy the wisdom and inspiration of Rabbi Moss' weekly emails.

What Makes an Antisemite?

 

Question of the Week:

It seems like antisemitism is everywhere these days, and almost becoming acceptable again. Why do so many people hate Jews? Why is antisemitism still flourishing today, even in modern society? And what can we do about it?

Answer: 

The deepest analysis of antisemitism can be found in a deceptively simple Talmudic passage. It is discussing the story of Purim. And its wisdom rings true until today. 

Haman was an antisemitic minister in ancient Persia who wanted to see the Jews annihilated. He approached King Achashverosh and offered to pay him a hefty sum in return for permission to fulfill his vile wish to kill the Jews. The King responded, "Keep your money and do with the Jews what… Read More »

Is It Ever Ok to Hide Being Jewish?

 

Question of the Week

I am having a debate with a friend. He has a good job in a big company, but he has not told them he is Jewish. He thinks his boss is an anti-semite, and by hiding his Jewishness he is able to get away with things. Like Friday afternoons the staff all go out for a drink, and he leaves early. He says it's because he doesn't drink alcohol, so they let him off the hook. If he said it was for Shabbos they wouldn't accept it. I just think it's wrong to hide who you are just to keep your job. Don't you agree?

Answer:

As a rabbi, I have never had to hide my Jewishness to keep my job. That probably wouldn't work out so well.

But I'm not sure that is what your friend is doing… Read More »

The Walk of Life

 

Question of the Week

I have been sitting Shiva after the passing of my father. Because of the circumstances no one is able to visit, but I have appreciated the calls and messages. As painful as it all is, I have to say that I am a little reluctant to leave this bubble. I wanted to know, what happens on the last day? How do I formally end Shiva? Do I just change clothes and that's it?

Answer:

You have not been sitting alone. Your father's soul is next to you.

The Jewish mystics teach that in the early days after death, the soul is not yet ready to move on from this world. During the seven days of mourning, the soul of the departed hovers around the Shiva house. Over the course of the week, the soul… Read More »

What Worries You the Most?

Question of the Week

I’ve got a question for you from my kids. I’d love a simple answer they can understand but also has something deep to it:
Why do we cover our eyes when we say the Shema prayer?

Answer:

When we say Shema, we are declaring that Hashem is one. This means that there is only one G-d, and He is the source of all. E verything in the world, and everything that happens, is from Hashem.

It is not that good things come from Hashem, and bad things come from some other evil source, like the Devil, or Satan, or Big Tech. Hashem is one, the only one, and all comes from Him.

And Hashem is good. So if everything comes from Hashem, and Hashem is good, then everything that happens must… Read More »

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