Message for the Week from Rabbi Stein
A Good Night's Sleep
Rabbi Jay M. SteinWednesday, April 4, 2018 at 10:00:00 am
Mishna Avot 3:4
R. HANINA B. HAKINAI SAID: HE WHO KEEPS AWAKE AT NIGHT, AND HE WHO WALKS ON THE WAY ALONE AND MAKES ROOM IN HIS HEART FOR THAT WHICH IS FUTILE, LO, THIS [MAN] INCURS GUILT [EXPIABLE] BY HIS LIFE.
As a child, who after a long, great day at sleep-a-way camp, gets into bed and discovers, for the first time, he is homesick, so too, we can get distracted by the events of the day. Sometimes it takes the quiet of our bedroom to get in touch with our inner thoughts. This can be an important exercise in self-evaluation. Each of us needs time away from the tumult of life to evaluate our priorities and to look in the mirror. Regularly, we encounter people who give us advice and consul. Some give their perspective with the best of intentions while others’ motivations are less sincere. Either way, the image of self is a bit distorted.
A life with input from others can be imprecise. We can easily loose perspective and find ourselves in a vortex of self-doubt, confusion and even anxiety. For some, there is no choice, sleep does not come. Those people wrestle all night long with doubts and insecurities and need professional help. But for many, there comes a time when they make a choice to sleep or to stay awake. Says our Mishna, we each need a good nights sleep in order to function properly. We need to make sure that when the insecurities of nighttime begin to creep into our heads, we tune them out and get some rest. Our Mishna teaches that we are social beings who need each other to live; but we also need a good night’s sleep!
Friday 7th Day of Passover
Sermon: God Hurled Both Driver and Horse
Shabbat 8th Day of Passover Yizkor
PowerStart What Is Oppressive Labor
Sermon: Future Redemption
No FinishStrong (We will limp to the end of the Holiday)
Rabbi Jay M. SteinWednesday, April 4, 2018 at 12:00:00 am
May this holiday awaken within you a renewed sense of freedom and joy. May you feel energized to work on behalf those in the world suffering from scarcity and violence. May we learn effective ways to share the spiritual wealth found deeply inside all of us.
If you have room at your table for a couple of people, please let me know ASAP. There are still a few people in our community who do not have a place to go.
Please enjoy this Passover greeting by clicking on the link below. As always I thank Michael Billig and his team for making this video so beautiful.
(If this link doesn't work, just cut and paste it into your browser.)
On behalf of my wife, Sharon Cantor Leuchter, Hal and myself to wish you a happy and healthy Passover.
Rabbi Jay M. SteinThursday, March 15, 2018 at 12:00:00 am
Mishna Avot 3:2
HANINA, THE VICE-HIGH PRIEST, SAID: PRAY FOR THE WELFARE OF THE GOVERNMENT, FOR WERE IT NOT FOR THE FEAR THEREOF, ONE MAN WOULD SWALLOW UP ALIVE HIS FELLOW-MAN.
Social responsibility is at the core of our value system. Care of one another is one of the most basic principles in Judaism. The welfare of the community takes precedence over the single person. This concept, though essential to our national survival is at odds with our modern sensibilities that places the individual at the center of our priorities.
Our Mishna teaches us that we must think of others. We must pray for others. The responsibility of leaders is great. Much rests on their shoulders. The very idea of government rests on the idea that there are those charged with the care of the common good. Those people find themselves is a difficult place of trying to please so many and they need our prayers.
Every Shabbat morning we say the words, “Our God and God of our ancestors: We ask your blessings for our country, for its government, for its leaders and advisors, and for all who exercise just and rightful authority.” In that prayer we give language to the hope that they are inspired by our tradition to do what is best and serve a noble cause.
Maybe God hear our prayers and the prayers of all, for life and for peace.