Grudge Match – Parshat Vayishlach 5781

What I find most remarkable about Jacob and Esau's moment of reconciliation is that apparently both Jacob and Esau have decided to let bygones be bygones. They don’t bring up their rocky past or ask for any sort of closure. They are simply able to embrace one another as siblings, and let it go.

A Video Story and Message for Thanksgiving

As we approach Thanksgiving, I wanted to share with you one of our tradition's beloved stories. It is the only Jewish story I know which features a turkey, and that makes it seem appropriate for this week. I hope you will enjoy this video.

Fully Dressed – Parshat Vayetzei 5781

Has anyone reminded you to make sure you’re wearing clean underwear? If you’re like me, you’ve had it drilled into you that no matter what, when you leave the house, always make sure you’re covered for any eventuality. If there’s an accident or an emergency, you want to be not only prepared, but presentable.

Prayers of Gratitude

Friends, I don’t know about you, but the recent news from Pfizer and Moderna did me a world of good. Yes, it will still be quite a long time before vaccine production can be scaled up sufficiently so that we can return to a semblance of the life we all knew before this pandemic. I liken it to the old aphorism of the light at the end of the tunnel.

Running on Empty – Parshat Toldot 5781

It’s strange that I never let my car gas tank go below a quarter tank, for fear that I might get stranded somewhere, but when it comes to my own physical and spiritual health, I don't always pay enough attention to how close I am to empty. A helpful lesson from Parshat Toldot.

Home is Where the Heart Began

I have been reading a memoir about home by author David Biespiel. If you are unfamiliar with him, David is an acclaimed author, poet and memoirist who lives in SE Portland and is the Poet in Residence at OSU.

Out of Reach – Parshat Chayei Sarah 5781

Perhaps you've noticed, but I'm not tall, which sometimes means things are slightly out of reach for me. But regardless of mezuzah height, or the position of a heavy Torah, Judaism teaches that God is always within reach, as Abraham suggests for the very first time in this week's Torah portion.