Rabbi Daniel Lapin

Why Are the Shrinks Jewish?

I enjoyed watching a five-floor building being constructed nearby. I enjoyed the sound as workmen started up the giant diesel engines in their bulldozers promptly at 7am every morning. I enjoyed watching men swarm up rickety-looking scaffolding to pour concrete columns and sway precariously on cherry picker platforms thirty feet up in the air welding...

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Two Countries – Two Religions

As a fan of geography (Not social studies, but geography!) I can think of quite a few islands with an international border cutting through them. Cyprus, St. Martin, and Ireland come to mind. It is the Caribbean island of Hispaniola, however, that fascinates me the most. On no other divided island I know, does the...

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Out with the Old?

It is quite exciting to tell ourselves, “This year is a new chance.” “This year will reveal an improved version of ourselves. Just wait and see how our marriages, families, and businesses thrive. It’s an opportunity for a new beginning.” I’m all for looking ahead and upgrading our game. But let’s not be too quick...

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Define This

The adolescent daughter of friends of ours has an annoying habit. To almost anything said to her, she aggressively retorts, “Define __”. For instance, when I saw her last week, I innocuously greeted her with “Hello Denise, how are things with you?” “Define things” she snapped back. There was, of course, no good answer. One...

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What Is Ancient Jewish Wisdom Good For?

Back when I used to build boats, launch day was fraught with tension. I know what you’re thinking. The crane is lowering the new boat into the water, the customer stands there watching anxiously with his family. Will it sink right there in front of everyone? Wrong! The chances of a new boat that was...

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Letter from Jerusalem

Dear Friend of the American Alliance of Jews and Christians— As Susan and I hear the jets roaring over Jerusalem on their way to Gaza, a flaming arrow of incandescent clarity penetrates our souls. It is absolutely clear to us that we are witnessing the latest in a long line of bloody battles in the

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Friends Forever

Go ahead: List the ten most important relationships in your life. Some will be family and others will be business and work relationships. There will probably be a few friends on the list too. Family relationships are fairly well-defined. The obligations and expectations of those relationships are, for the most part, known quantities. Business relationships...

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Passover’s 15-Step Program

Countless people will soon be observing a Passover Seder. There are many important aspects to running an effective Seder, but perhaps the most important and the least known is that the Seder, meaning order, is an arrangement of fifteen indispensable steps from start to finish. In order to explain this to you, I must first explain the...

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Some Give and Take

While discussing the verses which warn judges (and all of us) against taking a bribe (Exodus 23:8 and Deuteronomy 16:19), ancient Jewish wisdom relates a tale of two men who were standing under a hot sun. One invites the other to share the shielding cover of his umbrella. As they begin to chat, the umbrella’s...

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Oil Painting

Can you spot a connection between all these English words? A—AN—ANT—ANTI—ANTIC—ANTICIPATE No, of course not. Other than each being formed by adding letters to the previous word, there is no conceptual connection. Yet in the Lord’s language, the meanings of the four following words are strongly linked: חשׁמנה שׁמנה שׁמנ שׁמ Reading from right to...

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