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Q. If I’m a “Gilgul” am I living someone else’s life?

A. “Gilgul” is a Kabbalistic term for reincarnated souls, who have been to this world before in different bodies and returned to this world in new bodies to continue their mission. It’s an abstract esoteric concept, but one that troubled … Read the rest

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Q. I have no whole Challah available? Can I make Hamotzee on sliced?

A. Yes, you certainly can.

Now, there is something special we do for Shabbos called “Lechem Mishneh” the two loaves of Shabbos, which are supposed to be whole and uncut before the blessing. But if that’s not possible due to … Read the rest

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Q. My son’s Bar-Mitzvah Parsha is all about animal sacrifice. What relevance would this have in today’s world?

A. Here’s one idea. There’s a beautiful Chassidic insight based on an interpretation of the Alter Rebbe, founder of Chabad, that aside for the physical animal (and especially nowadays without the Temple) one would have to make a “personal sacrifice” … Read the rest

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Q. Where can I read up more about the special spirituality of the Jewish woman?

A. www.JewishWoman.org is a great website with lots of material. The Rebbe often spoke about the unique advantages of feminine spirituality and strongly encouraged the empowerment of women and their vital involvement in Jewish life. One aspect of this was … Read the rest

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Q. So the oil lasted longer than it should have. Why the celebration thousands of years later?

A. Miracles aren’t only a matter of convenience – the sea split so Jews could get to the other side. They aren’t mere problem solvers. When G-d interferes with the natural order He created, it is an infusion of Divine … Read the rest

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Q. I noticed in the prayers we call G-d “Our Rock”. Why?

A. Chevy Trucks say “Like a Rock”, and Prudential Insurance advertises using a massive boulder. It symbolizes permanence in a changing world. A indestructible core upon which to depend, and seek strength in. TANYA (the classic Chabad Chassidic work of … Read the rest

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Q. Is the number 42 special in Judaism?

A. Actually it is. The Jews rested / camped in 42 places on their way from the Exodus to the Land of Israel. Also, one of our prayers, “Ana B’Koach” said on Friday Night, has mystical background, and is comprised … Read the rest

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Q. I noticed you advertised a study group on “the Mystical Significance of Meatballs and Spaghetti” – but Rabbi, it’s an Italian Food!


A. This wasn’t intended to be a serious interpretation of this food favorite, rather a light and humorous springboard into an important kabbalistical concept. Kabbalah and Chassidic Thought explore in depth: two distinct G-dly Lights or Revelations, used in the … Read the rest

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