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The Torah Learning Library of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah

Category: Personal Status & Identity

Taking Back Modern Orthodox Judaism

by Rabbi Asher Lopatin Posted on January 3, 2017

Modern Orthodoxy as it developed in 20th-century America was dynamic, vibrant, challenging, and filled with new insights into Judaism. This was made possible not by taking in the values of modernity wholesale but by maintaining a positive attitude toward those values and not opposing them merely because they were foreign. At its best, Modem Orthodoxy Continue Reading »

Unorthodox Therapy

by Michelle Friedman, MD Posted on November 7, 2016

When a psychotherapist is needed, how important is it that he be religious? Can we trust a non-religious therapist to not impose his own value system on the patient? Isn’t it possible that a therapist who is not intimately involved with the Orthodox lifestyle may misinterpret an Orthodox person’s behavior? Can we be confident that Continue Reading »

Rav Lichtenstein’s Approach to General Studies

by Rabbi Shalom Carmy Posted on October 27, 2016

What is a Halakhic Jewish Identity?

by Rabbi Haggai Resnikoff Posted on October 6, 2016

Apart from the “Shema Yisra’el” with which we are so familiar, Parshat Va’etchanan has three other instances where we see similar instructions for Israel to listen. What do the Other Shema Yisraels have that our Shema doesn’t. Considering their emphasis, wouldn’t it be better to recite them twice daily rather than our Shema? What does our Shema Continue Reading »

Rites of Passage

by Michelle Friedman, MD Posted on July 5, 2016

My eldest daughter was assigned to read a long novel of her choice over spring vacation and came to me for help in making her selection… To read the full article, click here.

Dimensions: A Young Man’s Story of Torment: Surviving Depression

by Rabbi Nathaniel Helfgot Posted on July 5, 2016

The fall of 1996 was an exciting time in my life: I had just started a new job coordinating the Judaic studies curriculum for Maayanot, a fledgling new high school for young women in Teaneck, New Jersey; I was teaching a few classes at Torah Academy of Bergen County, a local boys’ yeshivah high school and I was continuing to lecture Continue Reading »

A Message of Inclusiveness At The Foot of Mt. Sinai

by Rabbi Avi Weiss Posted on May 25, 2016

  The Torah tells us that at the moment of revelation all the Jews at Sinai were able to see. (Exodus 20:15) Is it possible that of the several million there was not one single person who was blind? Here Rashi responds and states that in fact a miracle occurred. In his words “there was Continue Reading »

Maintaining the Purity of Shoah Memory

by Rabbi Avi Weiss Posted on May 25, 2016

Survivors of the Shoah encounter the experience through what can be called “pure memory.” Their relationship to the event is direct, with very little intervening. As we move further away from the Shoah, and we who were not there seek to remember, symbols may be required to help us. It is in this realm that Continue Reading »

The Importance of the Land of Israel

by Rabbi Avi Weiss Posted on May 25, 2016

Over and over the portion of Ekev emphasizes the importance of inheriting the land of Israel (Deuteronomy 8:1, 9:1). Why is Israel so crucial to our covenant with God? In the end, the goal of the Jewish people is to do our share to redeem the world. This is our mission as the chosen people and Continue Reading »

Labels Are for Grocery Items, Not People

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on April 14, 2016

Parashat Metzorah continues to detail the laws of tumah, impurity, that can occur to people and that would require them to maintain their distance from the Mishkan. The parasha opens with the case of the metzorah, the person afflicted with the skin disease of tzara’at, and how he is to become pure: “This shall be Continue Reading »

Are Patients Still People?

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on April 7, 2016

The Torah spends a great deal of time addressing the phenomenon of tzara’at, spots on the skin that can render a person ritually impure. A person with such a spot needs to have it inspected by a kohen to determine if it is indeed tzara’at, and if it meets certain criteria, the kohen will declare the person Continue Reading »

A Marriage of Equals?

by Rabbi Dov Linzer Posted on November 19, 2015

In the Torah story of Avraham’s servant and his interaction with Rivka, her brother, and her mother, we saw that society in Padan Aram had an unusual family structure. As a matrilineal society, households were comprised of the children of the same mother, and the head of the household was the mother’s oldest brother, perhaps Continue Reading »