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What Is Really Bothering Us?

Summer is fast approaching and I am gratified to have been allowed to return as head counselor of Camp Revach here in Waterbury. Last summer, I discovered something fascinating. We have a great time in camp, but I can’t deny the fact that many days I found myself quite drained. One bunk has boys refusing to play the game because the teams aren’t fair. (They never are, are they?) Two…

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Shavuos and Slurpees

Back in my days as a bochur at Yeshiva of Far Rockaway, for some period of time, a few of us stayed up in yeshiva all Thursday night. A bochur a little older than us, today a talmid chochom living with his family in Beitar, would go out and buy us Slurpees. It was a fun and beautiful matzav. I remember one particular boy, who was not from the serious…

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Locked Out

I couldn’t deny the clear Hashgachah Protis. I generally don’t lock my car. Perhaps I even hope for it to get stolen so that I can collect insurance. My children say that I should leave it in a bad neighborhood with a “Please Take” sign, but I won’t go that far. This time, however, I had something of value in the back seat, so after some hesitation as to whether…

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Reacting With Riots

Reflecting on the recent events in Baltimore, I thought of the Mishnah in Avos (3:2) which states, “One should daven for the peace of the kingdom, for if not for its fear, each person would swallow his friend alive.” It is terrible to witness humanity acting in such a cruel and selfish fashion under some type of pretense of fighting for justice. I was thinking of what lessons we can…

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Price Gouging

It’s been two and half years since Hurricane Sandy. Many families are unfortunately still feeling its devastating consequences in different ways. During that period, when various basics were in high demand, there was much talk about the illegal practice of price gouging. At the time, our menahel, Rabbi Doniel Kalish, shared with the talmidim of our mesivta a powerful and important thought on the subject. This article is based on…

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Chesed Begins at Home

So you are expecting another article stressing the importance of giving one’s time and energy to your family before running off to help everyone else in the world. While this is certainly true, I would like to highlight a different idea when it comes to our dealings with our family. Mothers across the globe are still recovering from all their hard work before, on, and after Pesach. It is incredible…

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Life Without Mussar?

Pesach has ended and we have begun counting down – or rather up – to Kabbolas HaTorah. What is our avodah during this time? How do ready ourselves for Shavuos? The korban omer brought on the second day of Pesach was comprised of barley, which is primarily animal food. On the other hand, the shtei halechem brought on Shavuos is made of wheat, signifying that our avodah during this time…

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Pesach: Time To Recline

Some don’t question Some don’t ask why That’s not a level It’s just not a cry For those who care Yes they do ask Must seven precious children So tragically pass? Only then we answer Then we say Hashem is merciful We don’t understand His way He sends us hints Like cry no more For He is watching All that is in store Many lessons, many betters We must make…

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What Is My Mission?

Businesses often have mission statements that depict their goals, as well as guidelines they are committed to following to get there. The question the average person should find himself asking from time to time is: What is my mission in life? I understand that the rosh yeshiva’s mission is disseminating Torah and the philanthropist’s is supporting institutions. I have no clear agenda, so what is my mission? Where do I…

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A perplexed doctor is assessing disappointing medical test result.

Spiritual Misdiagnosis

Just a few minutes ago, I was sitting in a meeting of rabbeim. Rabbi Kalish, the menahel of our mesivta, related a phenomenal thought that I must share with you. Allow me to embellish the message with a short introduction. As a bochur learning in Eretz Yisroel, I noticed some discoloration on my skin. I went to a local doctor, who told me that it comes from exposure to excessive…

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