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September 12, 2020 – 11:37 pm | 70 views

Against all odds, life came to be. For life to flourish on earth, such precise conditions had to be met that even a tiny variation would have thrown it off. What were the odds that such precise conditions would be met on earth? Considering that it is the only place …

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Articles in Sh’lach L’chah

Shelach: To Smile or To Cry?

June 13, 2020 – 11:51 pm | 327 views
smile-innerstream.ca

The Torah relates a fascinating human-interest story about people who couldn’t help themselves and had to satisfy their curiosity. As is often the case, when we chase down our curiosities, they turn against us.
It had been more than a year since the Jews had left Egypt, and they were anxious …

Shelach: A Talit Meditation

June 23, 2019 – 12:05 am | 696 views
talit-innerstream.ca

The Talit is a shawl that we wrap around ourselves during prayer. It has four corners, from each of which, hangs eight fringes. Everyday, before we wrap ourselves in the Talit, we separate each fringe from the others and tighten the knots that bind them to the Talit.
As we run …

Sh’lach: Bad News

June 3, 2018 – 12:07 am | 878 views
bad-news-innerstream.ca

Why is bad news so ubiquitous? Wherever we turn we seem to hear another piece of bad news. This one has cancer, that one broke an arm, another lost his job, and another’s home was flooded. Why is there so much bad news?
The truth is that there is much more …

Sh’lach: The Tetris Effect

June 11, 2017 – 12:08 am | 1,148 views
tetris-effect-innerstream.ca

My Tetris Effect Moment
On a recent trip, I was waiting for an airport shuttle to take me to my hotel. When a white bus pulled up with the words “Homestead Hilton” painted on the side, I entered the van. To my chagrin I discovered that there are two Hiltons in …

Shlach: Gradual Growth

June 25, 2016 – 11:13 pm | 1,663 views
growth-innerstream.ca

The Struggle
In Canada and the US, this is the season of liberty as both celebrate Independence Day this week. Canada won its independence peacefully, but for the US it was a long struggle, one that proved beyond doubt that all growth is gradual.
The Colonists’ principle complaint against Great Britain was …

Shlach: Rewarding Excellence

June 25, 2016 – 11:08 pm | 1,675 views
rewarding-excellence-innerstream.ca

Right not Fair
When my son joined little league I was surprised that all teams, losing and winning, received trophies. I realize that no one wants to brand their team a loser, but if everyone is rewarded, effort and excellence are not incentivized. It is only by rewarding excellence that we …

Shlach: Boots On The Ground

June 9, 2014 – 1:37 am | 4,623 views
boots on the ground - innerstream.ca

Ritual
I’m often asked how to make ritual exciting. It’s sad, but true that many Jewish children are raised with a ritualistic form of Judaism that lacks spirit and it is difficult for them to be inspired by meaningless rituals that feel repetitive and redundant. My answer is always the same. …

Shlach: On The Fringes of Tolerance

May 26, 2013 – 5:29 am | 1,713 views
tolerance - innerstream

The Shawl
The prayer shawl is a fascinating garment. It is large enough to encompass the body, but is meaningless until it sports four fringes on each of its four corners. You might think the fringes are more important than the shawl, but think again. The fringes too are meaningless unless …