Welcome to the Nishma Insight Discussion Forum blog.


The NISHMA INSIGHT is our popular dvar Torah, distributed almost every week by e-mail, that touches upon an important concept in the Parsha, theme in a holiday or event in contemporary society.

Often, readers respond, via e-mail, with comments that initiate a further dialogue. Through this Discussion Forum, we now wish to open this dialogue to others. If you have a comment on the INSIGHT, we invite you place to your comments here; then we invite everyone to join the discussion.

(If you are not receiving the NISHMA INSIGHT, we invite you join our mailing/e-mail list through completing our sign-up form available at our website.)

Friday, January 17, 2020

INSIGHT 5780 - #15: TRANSFORMATION

For  Shemot
 
Available on the Nishma Facebook Page

Not yet available on the Nishma website

The idea that there is a time to question and a time not to question is also reflected in the story of the Akeida. While it is generally deemed praiseworthy that Avraham did not question God in regard to this command (as he questioned God in regard to Sdom), it is clear that Avraham's question about what occurred which he asked at the conclusion of the matter, is deemed praiseworthy. It is actually seen by some as a pivotal event in defining the Halachic system which demands investigation and questioning in order to determine, to the best of human ability, the true demand of God. The Akeida declared that in this focused encounter with God, the human being must fully limit himself/herself. This, however, is only in the beginning. As this relationship develops, it is God's Will that the human being exercises more self in the connection. This is what occurred in the conclusion of the Akeida. Such development must also occur in other aspects of the relationship with God. This is what the Insight is declaring in regard to the focused connection with God defined by Yetziat Mitzrayim. This idea is also connected to the very focus of na'aseh v'nishma.

Friday, January 10, 2020

INSIGHT 5780 - #14: UNITY AND TENSION

For  Vayechi
 
Available on the Nishma Facebook Page

Not yet available on the Nishma website

The reference to Binyamin in the Insight should be further developed. It is important to recognize that the Beit HaMikdash [the Temple] was situated in the territory of the tribe of Binyamin. As such, within the context of our discussion, any reference to Binyamin necessarily must include a consideration of the concept of the Beit HaMikdash within the nation. It is thus important to note that the brothers' animosity towards Yosef did not extend to Binyamin; Binyamin was not in conflict with the brothers. In regard to the Kingdoms, however, the tribe of Binyamin did side with the tribe of Yehuda and, as such, was in conflict with the Northern Kingdom. This should not be surprising for one of the goals of Yeravam was to lessen the importance of the Beit HaMikdash within the nation. In a certain way, he was trying for a Jewish unity without the necessary significance of the Temple of Hashem. The connection of Binyamin to Yehuda clearly informs us of the necessity of the concepts tied to the Beit HaMikdash in any true definition of Jewish unity.
RBH 

Thursday, January 2, 2020

INSIGHT 5780 - #13: VALUE IN THE VERY STRUGGLE TO UNDERSTAND

For  Vayigash
 
Available on the Nishma Facebook Page

Not yet available on the Nishma website

A powerful example of what we mean when we speak of the need to understand the balancing of what we term the different dimensions in understanding any behaviour within this story is the complexity inherent in Yosef's declaration to his brothers about his identity. From the spiritual perspective, he feels a necessity to ensure that his prophetic dreams come to fruition. From an ethical perspective, he does not even wish the possibility of embarrassing his brothers in front of the Egyptians. From the personal perspective, he is being internally driven to re-connect and bring about the most positive of personal connections and emotions. The only way to understand the full depth of this event is through recognizing this complexity.
RBH 

Thursday, December 26, 2019

INSIGHT 5780 - #12: PIRSUMEI NISA

For  Chanukah
 
Available on the Nishma Facebook Page

Not yet available on the Nishma website

Friday, December 20, 2019

INSIGHT 5780 - #11: THE BIBLICAL WORLD OF IDOLATRY

For  Vayeishev
 
Available on the Nishma Facebook Page

Not yet available on the Nishma website

Friday, December 13, 2019

INSIGHT 5780 - #10: MACHLOKET

For  Vayishlach

Available on the Nishma Facebook Page

Not yet available on the Nishma website

Friday, December 6, 2019

INSIGHT 5780 - #09: YAAKOV'S ETHIC

For  Vayetzei

Available on the Nishma Facebook Page

Not yet available on the Nishma website