Thoughts & Teachings

Thoughts & Teachings Author Full Text
How will you light your hanukkiyah?  The Talmud in tractate Shabbat records four traditions... Hannukah Full Text
Esau does something which our tradition sees as reprehensible.  Parshat Toldot tells the story... Parshat Toldot Full Text
Our parshah is framed by death. It begins with the death of Sarah at the age of 127 and ends... Parshat Chaye Sarah Full Text
New Shabbat AM is a joyous and reflective Shabbat morning celebration of prayer, song accompanied... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Sukkot is a tribute to simplicity. On Sukkot we pause for moments of living without all of... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Religion isn’t only about ritual and faith, worship and congregation. Real religion views the... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
This week we observe in our land a yahrzeit, the thirteenth sobering and sad anniversary of... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
So it begins.  With a plaintive melody and a nostalgic blast Elul enters once again.  It has... Elul Full Text
We began our preparations for Shabbat. Like on many missions, it starts with waking up very... Allison Baumwald Full Text
As we mourn the grievous loss of Eyal Yifrach, Gilad Shaar, and Naftali Fraenkel, we pray that... A Prayer for the State of Israel Full Text
Last week the sanctuary hosted two graduations in less than 24 hours, and in the past month... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
On the first day of Shavuot, Akdamut is chanted as part of the Torah service as an introduction... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
In Tel Aviv back in May 1948, wanting a Declaration of Independence to present to his people... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
New Shabbat AM is a joyous and reflective Shabbat morning celebration of prayer, song accompanied... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Early in the Seder ritual, we break a piece of matzah, wrap it in a cloth, and hide the larger... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
This past Shabbat was Shabbat Parah, the first of four special Shabbatot leading up to Pesah... Four Special Shabbatot Full Text
Why didn’t Mordecai bow down to Haman? After all, that is how the whole megilah gets started... Purim Full Text
From the first parashah in the book of Shemot, of Exodus, Moses appears or is mentioned in... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
On 4 occasions the Torah tells us to teach our children and instruct them in the path of Judaism... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
This week a hero is born, a savior, you might say. We read the very beginning of the Book of... Rabbi Debi Wechsler Full Text
How do you measure the growth of a person? We talk a lot about growth – professional, personal... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
How do you light your hanukkiyah? The Talmud in tractate Shabbat records four traditions of... Hanukkah Lighting Full Text
God and Abraham stood together on the precipice.  Both looking out on the cities of Sodom and... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Our first full week, our first regular week, after the holidays. It is time for us, like Noah... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
On Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur we stay inside our cocoons of home and synagogue.  Even the... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
So it begins.  With a plaintive melody and a nostalgic blast Elul enters once again.  It has... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
At this time of year, many of our students and community members set off on journeys of discovery... Tefillat Ha Derekh Full Text
The Torah’s vision of counting these 50 days we call “the Omer” is to remember God’s gifts... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
The song Dayenu offers repair for our ancestors’ ingratitude while wandering in the wilderness... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
This Shabbat we call Shabbat Parah, the first of four special Shabbatot leading up to Pesah... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
On Purim, we recall an existential threat to the Jewish people, a threat overcome through courage... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
On Tu B’Shevat we anticipate nature’s renewal and the redemption we will celebrate on Pesah... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Mindful religion is spiritually compelling and intellectually rooted in sacred history as well... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Our theme for Hanukkah this year at Chizuk Amuno is celebrating the 25th anniversary of the... Celebrating 25 Years of Freedom for Soviet Jewry Full Text
Avinu She Ba shama’yim, Rock and Redeemer of the people Israel: Bless the State of Israel,... A Prayer for the State of Israel Full Text
Our God and God of our ancestors: We ask your blessings for our country, for its government... Prayer for Our Government Full Text
Our first full week, our first regular week, after the holidays. It is time for us, like Noah... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
One of the things I treasure most about Judaism is how it links us to our ancestors, our community... Cheryl Abrams Full Text
It's September (or soon Tishrei.)  Time to check in with each other. Here at Chizuk Amuno,... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
We desire good conversations. Respectful, passionate, but lacking in condescension or arrogance... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
There was one great tragedy of Moses’ life - more than being raised away from his family, more... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Shavuot is one of the most anticipated festivals on the Jewish calendar. Anticipating this... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
In 1949 as David Ben Gurion presided over the first observance of Yom HaAtzmaut (Israel Independence... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Life is lived in stages.  In as much as we experience moments and days, we live within stages... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
As we anticipate our Passover holiday we are what some people have called, “Eve of Pesah” Jews... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
This Shabbat we call Shabbat Parah, the first of four special Shabbatot leading up to Pesah... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Why didn’t Mordecai bow down to Haman? After all, that is how the whole megilah gets started... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
On behalf of my wife, Renée, and our sons, Micah and Joshua, I wanted to share how pleased... Dan Goldfarb Full Text
When I as a child, out of all my well loved toys, my favorite possession was a 6 inch Torah... Janice Brodsky Full Text
The first time that our Rabbis taught us about Tu BiShevat they did so in the Mishna.  That... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Hanukkah isn’t about the oil. Hanukkah is about the light! We symbolize that light of God’s... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Esau does something which our tradition sees as reprehensible.  Parshat Toldot tells the story... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Our parshah is framed by death. It begins with the death of Sarah at the age of 127 and ends... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Our first full week, our first regular week, after the holidays. It is time for us, like Noah... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
In setting forth the parameters for a Sukkah our rabbis taught that it should be not smaller... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
I am a Ba’al Teshuvah. Not in the conventional social context but in the more literal sense... Matt Freedman Full Text
As the month of Elul approaches and it is time to start thinking about the holidays, the first... Allison Baumwald Full Text
I don't think I have ever consciously prepared for the High Holidays. The extent of my thoughts... Randy Getz Full Text
I love September. The rituals of return:  to routine, to school, to preparation, to teaching... Jill Max Full Text
The High Holidays and the memory of my beloved father, Henry Satisky, are inextricably linked... Marsha Gammerman Full Text
It was a simple request to share a Kavanah on a fair question - how do I prepare spiritually... Jeffrey Hettleman Full Text
September brings us to our annual season of reflection and repentance. The Hebrew month of... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Many of us today carry a spiritual burden during this “recession,” a lessened sense of our... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Nakhamu, nakhamu ami      Comfort, comfort My people, says your God. Speak tenderly to Jerusalem... Isaiah Chapter 40 Full Text
One can lie down for the night weeping, yet rise up singing hymns of joy. "Ba’erev yalin be-khhi... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Life is lived in stages.  In as much as we experience moments and days, we live within stages... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
The quest for holiness is the main task of the Jewish people. Kedoshim tihiyu ki kadosh ani... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Avadim Hayeenu.  We were slaves to Pharaoh in Egypt, but Adonai our God took us out of there... Chizuk Amuno Congregation Full Text
This Shabbat we call Shabbat Parah, the first of four special Shabbatot leading up to Pesah... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
One of the most precious times parents and children share is the quiet and routine of bedtime... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
In the Sefer Ha Hinukh, the Book of Mitzvah Education, the 613 mitzvot as enumerated by Maimonides... Chizuk Amuno Congregation Full Text
Our Chug Ivri, (Hebrew speaking group) has met regularly on the first and third Thursday of... Helen Lewis Full Text
When in our lives do we sense awareness of God? Moses and the Children of Israel are encamped... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
The Mishnah tells us that we observe four New Years: Nisan 1 is the New Year for dating... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Values lie at the core of our congregation’s life. We belong to Chizuk Amuno, we worship and... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
We are all concerned for the people and land of Israel following the massive fire in northern... Chizuk Amuno Responds to Devastating Fire in Northern Israel Full Text
How have you been lighting your hanukkiyah? The Talmud in tractate Shabbat records four traditions... Chizuk Amuno Congregation Full Text
On July 15, 1948 soon after the establishment of the State of Israel, but while Jerusalem was... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
I guess I’ve never given much thought to a couple of words that really do deserve more attention... Judy Meltzer Full Text
Values lie at the core of our congregation’s life. We belong to Chizuk Amuno, we worship and... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
There are three particular incidents in this week’s parsha in which we see an outsider being... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Long before Jacob’s dream at Beit El of angels going up and down the ladder where he marks... Rabbi Deborah Wechsler Full Text
Abraham is not a holy man, a prophet, or sage.  He is a dedicated and hard working man, a complex... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
Marine geologists believe that people once occupied the ancient shores of the Black Sea. A... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
I’m not a scientist. I am a religious person. But I do not believe faith to be fact. I value... Rabbi Ron Shulman Full Text
It was on Yom Kippur, 1942, that the Nazis began to liquidate the ghetto of Czestochowa Poland... Heller Kreshtool Full Text
I grew up in Rock Island, Illinois, a small Midwestern town on the border of Iowa and Illinois... Samuel Moskowitz Full Text
Each morning, I like to take a walk to get my mind and body started for the day. This month... Lee Sherman Full Text
Every year, as the High Holy Days approach, I become more contemplative. I ponder the year... Judy Meltzer Full Text
Like most of my fellow teachers and professors, I spend a portion of every summer preparing... Sarah Manekin Full Text