The Celestial and Earthly Jerusalem

by Rav Herzl Hefter Rabbi Yohanan said: the Holy One Blessed Be He said, “I shall not dwell in the Celestial Jerusalem (Yerushalayim shel ma’alah) until I dwell in the Earthly Jerusalem (Yerushalyim shel matah) ”There is a well-known dispute between Maimonides and...

Reflections on Moshe and Rebuke- Tisha B’Av 5777

Batya Hefter – Rosh Beit Midrash “And these are the words”(Dvarim 1:1)  says Rashi, ‘these are words of rebuke’ Parshat Dvarim is always read the Shabbat before Tisha B’av. The linguistic parallel between Moshe words “איכהאשא לבדי טרחכם” and  איכה ישבה...

Reflections on the Days of Judgment

by Batya Hefter These days of repentance and forgiveness intensify the ongoing struggle between judgement and unconditional love.  On the personal plane, this translates into a struggle between holding ourselves accountable as opposed to being forgiving of ourselves....

Yom Kippur: Why Aharon?

By: Rav Herzl Hefter And Moshe said to Aharon, “What did this people do to you, that you brought so great a sin upon them?” (Shmot 32:21) The temple service of Yom Kippur is only valid if performed by the High Priest. (Yoma 32b) Aharon is the one who led the people to...