Archive | Israel


Al Hanisim For Yom Haatzmaut

Out of truthful and grateful contemplation, and commitment to halachah and our liturgical tradition, Beit Hillel has issued a 70-word long  Al Ha’nisim text that aspires to accurately and faithfully describe the great wonder of Israel’s Day of Independence, of the Jewish people’s revival and its State. Beit Hillel proposes that the public adopt this new Al Hanisim text –  in synagogues and at home. We recommend that it be […]

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Israeli Lawyer

Parshat Mishpatim: Does Halakha Permit Recourse to Israeli Civil Courts?

In recent years, the relationship between segments of the religious community and Israel’s civil courts has been fraught with tension over rulings by the Supreme Court perceived by some as antagonistic to religious values or institutions. This friction stems partly from those in the judiciary who are determined to preserve the democratic nature of the […]

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Boy Reading Torah

We Need to Offer Halachically Acceptable Bar Mitzvah Celebrations for Children With Mental Disabilities

The Beit Hillel rabbinic organization has initiated a public campaign within the religious communities to encourage bar mitzvah celebrations in synagogues across the country for children with mental disabilities and developmental issues. For years, Orthodox synagogues in Israel rarely offered disabled children the opportunity to enjoy a bar mitzvah celebration. Now, Beit Hillel wants to […]

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All we need is love.

Love Stands a Chance

The Sefer Yetzirah (Chapter 1, Mishna 1) relates that God created the world with a story. This teaches us that life itself is an ongoing story, and a true story does not end. Five years ago, on Rosh Hashanah, I was part of one of the most influential stories of my life, and this month, […]

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Kotel - Western Wall

Those Who Mourn – Merit

This coming week will commence the fast of the 9th of Av, which signifies, more than anything else, the destruction of Jerusalem and its Temples. Regarding this fast, Our Sages said: “Anyone who mourns Jerusalem deserves to see its rejoicing, and those who do not mourn Jerusalem will not see its joy” (Taanit 30b). The […]

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Paratrooper and Prayer For Soldiers

Yeshiva Students, the Army, and Spinoza’s Sub Specie Aeternitatis

Whenever I think of the huge demonstration of Chareidi yeshiva students earlier this year, I think of Gateshead Yeshiva in England where I spent many years studying Talmud. It is Europe’s most famous yeshiva and a bastion of Torah study in the Chareidi world. Paradoxically, I also think of Spinoza’s incomparable masterpiece, the Ethics, written […]

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Israel Mourning 3 Sons

Unanswered Prayers…

In these very sad and difficult moments, I wish to share with you something I wrote in the past, which unfortunately became so relevant now, when Hashem said “no” to our prayers.   Rabbi Ronen Neuwirth “Avraham instituted the morning tefillah, as it says: “וישכם אברהם בבקר אל המקום אשר עמד שם” – And Avraham […]

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3 Kidnapped Boys

Responding to the Abduction of our Sons: A Call to Action for All of the Jewish People

Unfortunately, we have become far-too knowledgeable in Israel about terrorist attacks and kidnappings. Every occasion is shocking, painful and heartbreaking. Yet oftentimes, they take place in some other part of the country, providing a false sense of safety and distance. This time, however, it has happened right in front of us, affecting us very differently. […]

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