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December 7, 2019 – 8:26 pm | 10 views

When Jacob returned to Israel after twenty-two years of being a minority in the city of Haran, where his uncle Laban lived, he said “I sojourned with Laban . . . and I acquired oxen and donkeys, flocks, manservants, and maidservants.[1]
Why did he announce that he had sojourned with Laban, …

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Articles by Lazer Gurkow

Rabbi Lazer Gurkow began his career at the tender age of fifteen when he was invited to congregations the world over to deliver guest sermons and to lead services. Rabbi Gurkow received his Rabbinic ordination through the Chabad Yeshiva system and was ordained in 1995 at the United Lubavitcher Yeshiva in Brooklyn, New York. With his easy, informal manner of presentation, Rabbi Gurkow engages his audience and leads them on provocative journeys of thought. He has lectured on many topics and was invited to speak to audiences Israel, Europe, Australia and throughout North America. Gifted with the ability to present the complicated in easily understood language, Rabbi Gurkow has lectured successfully to University students and community groups. A prolific writer, he is the author of more than six hundred articles that appear regularly in both on line and print publications. He is the author of a weekly Torah essay that is distributed via email and is published on numerous websites. He is the author of www.innerstream.org, a web site devoted to presenting the inner stream of meaning within Torah and he was a long-standing Scholar in Residence with Askmoses.com. Rabbi Gurkow serves as Rabbi to Congregation Beth Tefilah and resides in London Ontario with his wife and five children. Rabbi Gurkow is available to lecture to your community and is prepared to tailor his talk to the needs of your audience. You can reserve Rabbi Gurkow for an evening lecture on the subject of your choice or for a full Shabbaton weekend. For more information or to learn more about Rabbi Gurkow's lecture titles and fees you may contact him directly at rabbi@innerstream.org.

Vayigash: We Are Family

December 21, 2014 – 11:22 am | 1,431 views
we are family - innerstream.ca

A Pleasant Flight
It was Friday morning and I was preparing to board a flight from New York to Detroit. It was a flight like many others, but for me it was special because though I was alone that morning, I was surrounded by family. The flight was filled with Jews.

Chanukah: The Diaspora Mindset

December 17, 2014 – 3:39 pm | 1,158 views
diaspora - innerstream.ca

A Changed Perspective
It was several years ago, upon my return from a December trip to Israel, that I realized how deeply the diaspora had disaporized (to coin a new term) me. The seasonal decorations and music that pervade the public arena this time of year, were completely absent in Israel. …

Vayeshev: At Home

December 6, 2014 – 9:09 pm | 1,951 views
vat home - innerstream.ca

Where We Feel At Home
The story is told of a Chassid who would travel on business to St Petersburg and return home to his Rebbe’s court. In St. Petersburg he would don modern attire and mingle with his business colleagues, at home he reverted to the Chassid’s garb.
Feeling uncomfortable with …

Vayishlach: Why We Give

November 29, 2014 – 8:35 pm | 1,280 views
why we give - innerstream.ca

Early Morning Mitzvah
I want to share a story that made me reflect on why we give to people in need.
It was 6:15 AM and I was at a Starbucks on the New York Throughway seeking a dose of Ameicana to keep me awake. I was tired and bleary eyed, but …

Vayetze: Putting Children First

November 23, 2014 – 12:41 am | 1,240 views
children first - innerstream.ca

Children First
Do you put your children first? Are they an integral part of your life or do they intrude on your freedom? Did you marry only for love or to build a family with the person you love? When you come home, do you have eyes only for your spouse …

Toldot: The Secret of Jewish Survival

November 10, 2014 – 9:04 pm | 1,286 views
jewish survival - innerstream.ca

Survival Throughout History
Blaise Pascal, French theologian and philosopher, wrote at length about the marvel of Jewish survival. Powerful kings have tried to destroy them, yet the Jews survived whereas the nations of Greece, Italy, Athens and Rome have long perished. It is said that when King Louis XIV of France …

Chayei Sarah: The Joys of Hard Work

November 6, 2014 – 2:50 pm | One Comment | 3,077 views
hard work - innerstream.ca

No Break
Abraham seems to have been in love with hard work. The frenetic pace of his life was unusual. In his youth, he organized and gave mass lectures on Monotheism all across Mesopotamia. He wrote four hundred books on the subject.

Vayera: The Final Journey

November 1, 2014 – 10:19 pm | 1,382 views
final journey - innerstream.ca

Accompaniment
Today I want to share a reflection for life’s final journey.
Abraham planted an Eshel[1] and our sages had two different explanations for what that was. Some said it was an orchard, others said it was an inn. Some name their inn, The Red Roof Inn, others name their inn, The …