Rabbi’s Blog
A weekly message from Rabbi Cantor Menachem Mirski, Ph.D.

Category Philosophy

Freedom of existential self-defining

Who Am I? More importantly, who are you and why don’t you agree with me, because I am right. I know I am right, because if I knew I was wrong, I would know what was right so I would be right again, thus I am right. So why don’t you agree with me since I just proved I was right?

Logic IS the Continue Reading

Anger Breeds Chaos and Chaos Breeds Anger

Thoughts on Parashat Behaalotecha.

To set the stage: Van Nuys, one of the northern neighborhoods of Los Angeles, Monday J Continue Reading

Gniew rodzi chaos a chaos rodzi gniew

Refleksja nad paraszą Bahaalotecha.

Van Nuys, jedna z północnych dzielnic Los Angeles, poniedziałek ok. godziny 17. Dziennikarka jednej z telewizji rozmawia z kilkoma osobami zgromadzonymi przed sklepem spożywczym. Wszyscy z nich to Afroamerykanie, dwóch spośród mężczyzn trzyma dubeltówki. Jak wielu innych w okolicy, chronią Continue Reading

About Our Obligations to the Covenant

Thoughts on Parashat Bamidbar

This Sabbath we begin the Book of Numbers, in Hebrew Bamidbar (In the Desert). At the beginning of Parashat Bamidbar God asks Moses to conduct a census of the twelve tribes of Israel. Moses counts 603,505 men able to bear arms (20 to 60 years); the tribe of Levi, however, numbering 22,300 males aged one month and older, is counted separately. Almost Continue Reading

Thoughts on Parasha Behar-Bechukotai

How does the behavior of individual people determine the life of human communities? This very interesting question, which is especially relevant today, has been tackled by whole generations of philosophers dealing with social relations, by social scientists, social psychologists and other social sciences specialists throughout the centuries. Of course Continue Reading

Purifying the Realm of Order

Thoughts on Parashat Acharei Mot

Human beings dominated the world initially not by their physical power but by the power of intellect. The physical dominion came long after with the beginning of the modern industrial era. Over the centuries of this development we have gained more and more control over the natural environment and other living beings. By the forces of our intellect Continue Reading

A Few Words About Hierarchy

Thoughts on Parashat Miketz

In last week’s Torah portion we read about the dramatic events of Joseph’s life. After he was sold by his brothers to Egypt as a slave he became a servant of Pharaoh’s official – Potiphar. He made Joseph the administrator of his home, entrusting him with all his property. Soon after, Potiphar’s wife tried to seduce him. When he refused, Continue Reading

The Humiliation of Joseph

Thoughts on Parashat Vayeshev

The Torah portion for this week starts with the story of Jacob settling in Hebron with his twelve sons. His favorite son is seventeen-year-old Joseph, with whom his brothers are jealous for the preferential treatment he receives from his father. To make matters worse, Joseph relates to his brothers two of his dreams which foretell that he is destined Continue Reading

On (Divine) Protection

Thoughts on Parashat Vayetze

The Torah portion for this week starts with the story in which Jacob leaves his hometown of Beersheba and journeys to Charan, a major ancient city in Upper Mesopotamia (today’s southeastern Turkey.) On this supposedly pretty long journey he encounters a certain place and sleeps there dreaming of a ladder connecting heaven and earth with angels Continue Reading

To Speak Your Mind or Not

Thoughts on Parashat Vayera

The Torah portion this week contains only great and famous stories, including the story of Abraham interceding for Sodom and Gomorrah, their destruction, the story of Lot and his daughters. Then we return to Abraham again, this time he is in Geraar where he tells King Abimelech that Sara, his wife, is his sister. Our portion of the Torah also includes Continue Reading