thou shall prosper

Shocking Secret of Life

One of the great delights of sharing life with my wife is her voracious reading appetite.  She tells me about some books, she summarizes others and occasionally recommends one for me to read.  This she did recently with Frankenstein, written by Mary Shelley in the early 19th century. In her introduction, Shelley contemplates the ‘nature...

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Soul Piercing

The US Coastguard 7th District, covering Florida, periodically reports on ritualistic suspensions. Apparently, some people spend their weekends suspended from meat hooks carefully inserted into different parts of their bodies. They dangle from a large tripod apparatus erected on sandbars in Biscayne Bay. Many Moslems bloodily celebrate Ashura, the anniversary of the death of Mohammad’s...

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The Enterprise of Transformation

I visited many cities in the United States, the United Kingdom, and Israel last year, and I traveled through many airports while delivering over fifty speeches.  (I counted them here: https://www.rabbidaniellapin.com/speaking_engagements.php) During my travels, I frequently rent a car.  Sometimes from Hertz, other times from the smaller companies, Avis and National.  Since I rarely see...

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The Severed Flower

If I cut a beautiful flower off its plant and bring it indoors, I seem to have done a clever thing. No longer need I step outside to enjoy the bright colors and intoxicating fragrance  – it’s right there on my desk. However, the next day I notice the flower is less colorful and its...

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I’m Scared

“Leave the light on please,” says the child, “I’m scared of the dark.”  Perhaps the most common emotion expressed by little children is fear.  Long before they become comfortable articulating emotions like happiness, excitement, and sadness, small children speak of fear. Though we speak of it less as we grow up, we feel it just...

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Speech! Speech!

Five years ago, in a dazzling speech at San Francisco’s Moscone Center, Steve Jobs introduced his iPhone with these words, “Every once in a while a revolutionary product comes along that changes everything…” On June 4th, 1940, Winston Churchill gave a speech warning of a possible Nazi invasion.  This was its climax: “We shall defend...

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Royal Recommendation

Imagine a remote island never touched by civilization.  Its primitive populace possesses limited livestock and subsists on ineffective agriculture and inept fishing.  Violence and brutality are common; tribal warfare and disease shorten life expectancy. Now imagine being parachuted onto this island.  Let’s stipulate that the natives venerate you as a god-from-the-sky, feed you and care...

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The Good, the Bad and the Salty

When the hubbub of conversation around our Shabbat table occasionally lags, I sometimes delight my children with a ‘magic’ trick.  I am not a particularly talented prestidigitator but my family makes a gracious audience and besides, I do practice the illusions in private before presenting them to the table. Here’s one that never fails to...

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Thought Tools – My Mistake, Honey

___ Each week I write ThoughtTools® very carefully and review them diligently.  This is why I was shocked to discover what a bad mistake I made last week.  I am grateful to those alert readers who wrote in to correct me and I feel undeserving of the kind tone they employed. I am blushing at...

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Brain Flame

Imagine a room full of shouting people; walls plastered with large sheets of paper covered with scrawls. What is it?  A kindergarten for children with poor social skills?  No, it is a typical brainstorming session. Originated in the 1940s by advertising man Alex Osborn, brainstorming with its freewheeling tossing out of ideas and absence of...

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