During the second summer of our marriage, when we were still in college, my wife and I were employed as fire lookouts in Crater Lake National Park, Oregon. We lived in a mountaintop cabin 9,000 feet above sea level and our view extended 150 miles in all directions, taking in thousands of forested acres. That summer there were two small fires and the world seemed normal. 


In a certain study hall in Jerusalem, there was a Rabbi who would continually pace up and down between the lecterns, carrying on an intense conversation in learning … with himself! This was a delightful and sometimes amusing spectacle. As he paced, however, he was also aware of his surroundings. One day, I was explaining to my study partner my personal criterion for a good leader of the prayers, namely that he should make me cry. 


“Jacob was left alone and a man wrestled with him until the break of dawn.” (Genesis 32:25)

Who was more alone than our father Jacob? Jacob is alone and his children are alone. “Behold! It is a nation that will dwell in solitude and not be reckoned among the nations.” (Numbers 23:9) That is our unique position in the world and also our strength. 



Recent Posts


Eve Golden Calf G-d persecution Angel of Death High Priest Creator Gog fault Zohar locusts minyan patriarchs'matriarchs messiah King of the Universe Zechariah Ishmeal Western Wall Shechina ethics Shavuos Rosh Hashana Ashkenazi Chanukah spiritual Rosh Hashanah Canaan patriarchs Galil Abrahem Haman Temple Mount eternal Terror Attack in Jerusalem yarmulke terrorists Sodom earthquake deluge Rabbi Akiva Midrash rabbi kinneret Western World evil inclination tears terrorist materialism secret Red Sea Lot bris milah exile heaven violence Zion, Angel God Golus Protective edge song Holiness slavery Final redemption Yerushalayim Prophecy self-worship priests salvation Moshiach Dead Sea miracles Moshe evolution spies End of Days murder paradise world to come judgement King Solomon Jewish People Rome Miriam Moses Amram three weeks New Moon evil Song of Songs survival Torah brotherhood danger Chol haMoed rosh chodesh Golan Holy Ark war Holy Temple idol Chofetz Chaim United Nations seder matzos Talmud redemption tabernacle Greeks Hasmoneans Nation of Israel slaves Benjamin rain cholent cries Ruth Hagar Garden of Eden plague Tallis mikveh shield of Abraham Matriarchs soul biblical darkness Laban Psalms barley Sefiras haOmer siddur pain Tefillin Maccabeans Isaiah Father in Heaven Second Temple gossip America Beit Hamikdash shofar Earth Boaz sun prayer shmittah Day of Judgement Solomon Sea of Galilee kesuba tablets Bais Hamikdosh menorah blessing chaos Macabees Land of Israel alone Ammon Bilaam Judgement Day Balak creation prophet Samuel angels Samuel Jew Jerusalem Rebecca heavenly throne Egypt Repentence sanctity Holocaust Sukkos Geula Divine presence automobiles Tzuk etan Shushan stones Judaism king Malbim Pharaoh Moshaich idolatry night Rebbe water Faith trees High Holy Days purity Genesis Torah portion Maimonides yeshiva spirituality Jewish holidays terrorism Moab commandment kiddush culture fires Mordechai Jews Noah keys Abraham Mount Zion chessed Lunar eclipse pray Day of Atonement Purim Jewish missiles Mount Sinai miracle Solar eclipse Jewish festival Shabbos Magog holiday kosher Ishmael lights esrog David fragrance Yom Kippur logic King David Yaakov incense Elul angel Rashi Blame tremors Psalm Hashem Jacob stars Raiders of the Lost Ark mitzvos Heavenly Mercy Children of Israel leprosy Holy land Sephardi dreams moon Rabbis Chanukkah Babylonia Sages India Babylon Samuel the Prophet sacrifices Passover Seder Judah prayers Europe Esther Ishamael prayer book redeemer media Joseph Miraglim Tu b'Av Eglon Aharon Rachel Pinchas 2020 Vision fear peace Temple enemies Avraham Esau liberation Ten Commandments Israel Hebrew heavenly gates mitzva repentance Tu b'Shvat Tisha b'Av Torah scholars Chafetz Chaim Parsha forefathers Adam Amalek holy Zion Baku Master of the Universe Matisyahu Exodus Leah Achashveirosh Ezekiel death Red Heifer light resurrection Sukkah terror Passover mikveh, Sabbath Teshuva repent bible Sabbath Sarah hubris bird eternity Edom prophets compassion Jeremiah Mount Hermon synagogue ancestors sin Isaac prophet flood Banias meraglim