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About the Author

Rabbi Shraga Simmons

Rabbi Shraga Simmons spent his childhood trekking through snow in Buffalo, New York. He holds a degree in journalism from the University of Texas at Austin, and rabbinic ordination from the Chief Rabbi of Jerusalem. He is the co-founder of Aish.com, and founder of JewishPathways.com. He is also the founding editor of HonestReporting.com, and author of "David & Goliath" (2012), the definitive treatment of media bias against Israel. He lives with his wife and children in the Modi'in region of Israel.

Secret of the Jews

Secret of the Jews

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The prophet Isaiah refers to the Jewish people as a "light unto the nations," and it's no secret that Jews have positively influenced the world. As ...


Priorities

Priorities

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Reuben and Gad and the power of distraction.


Life's Most Important Thing

Life's Most Important Thing

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This Rosh Hashana, will we be able to stand before God with confidence? Only if we know the bottom line of what we're living for.


Everyone Counts

Everyone Counts

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


Pidyon Ha'ben - Redemption of First Born

Pidyon Ha'ben - Redemption of First Born

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Explaining the Jewish ceremony of buying a baby boy for five silver coins.


Harming Others With Words

Harming Others With Words

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


Priorities

Priorities

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In this week's parsha, the Jewish people are in final preparations for entering the Land of Israel. Two of the tribes, Reuven and Gad have been ...


On the Right Foot

On the Right Foot

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In Parshat Devarim, Moses presents a recap of the past 40 years in the desert. Moses refers to the ill-fated incident of the 12 Spies who scouted ...


Two Identical Goats

Two Identical Goats

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


Pet Food for Passover

Pet Food for Passover

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If Fido is hungry on Passover, here's what you can ― and can't ― feed your family pet.


ABCs of Honoring Parents

ABCs of Honoring Parents

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In Judaism, every day is Mother's Day and Father's Day.


Upsherin - First Haircut

Upsherin - First Haircut

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What's the story behind little Jewish boys running around with long hair?


Perfect Travels

Perfect Travels

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Parshat Masay enumerates the 42 different locations at which the Jewish people encamped during their 40 years in the desert. The travel route was ...


Why Things Happen

Why Things Happen

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Finding meaning in the day-to-day occurrences of our lives.


Friday Night 1-2-3

Friday Night 1-2-3

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Not sure how to begin? Look no further!


The Mixed Multitude

The Mixed Multitude

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


All About Kitniyot

All About Kitniyot

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Everybody knows you can't eat bread during Passover. But what's the deal with not eating rice and beans, too?


High Expectations

High Expectations

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At the beginning of Parshat Matot, God tells Moses to do battle against the Midianites - immediately after which Moses is destined to die. Now for ...


Idolators - 400 Years

Idolators - 400 Years

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Life is a continuous process toward self-discovery. It is never too late.


Spiritually Pure

Spiritually Pure

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One problem that causes difficulty in learning about various concepts in Judaism is the translation of Hebrew words. Many of these words have no ...


It's a Girl!

It's a Girl!

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Thank Heaven for little girls. A guide to celebrating the newborn.


Jump Into the Sea

Jump Into the Sea

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Finding the courage to confront your own sea and fulfill your potential.


Having a Bad Day?

Having a Bad Day?

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


Day In, Day Out

Day In, Day Out

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Parshat Pinchas tells of the heroic deed of Pinchas, who jumped up with spear in his hand to save the Jewish people from a plague of immorality. ...


Six Reasons Why The Wall Is Holy

Six Reasons Why The Wall Is Holy

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The Western Wall is at the root of the Jewish nation.


Down to Egypt

Down to Egypt

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Our forefather Jacob did not go to Egypt to settle permanently, but only to reside temporarily.


Code of Creation

Code of Creation

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


Lightning Rod

Lightning Rod

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Parshat Balak tells of the Jewish people encountering the Moabites in the desert. The king of Moab wants to fortify his country's strength, so he ...


Seder Preparations Checklist

Seder Preparations Checklist

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Seder means "order" because there are so many details to remember.


ABC's of Passover

ABC's of Passover

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Passover (Pesach in Hebrew) is known as the "holiday of freedom," commemorating the Jewish Exodus from Egypt following 210 years of ...


Naming a Baby

Naming a Baby

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A name defines a person's essence. Choose carefully.


Giving and Taking

Giving and Taking

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


Building a Sukkah

Building a Sukkah

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SELECTING A SITE To build your own Sukkah, first select a site that has nothing hanging above it -- i.e. a roof or a tree. The Sukkah floor space ...


Essential Vitamins

Essential Vitamins

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Powerful potions in pleasurable packaging.


Tabernacle of Time

Tabernacle of Time

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Shabbat is an anywhere-in-the-world, expense-free holy-time vacation.


Babylon's Fallen Tyrant

Babylon's Fallen Tyrant

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Saddam Hussein saw himself as the reincarnation of Nebuchadnezzar. And he suffered the same ignoble fate.


300 Mules

300 Mules

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Parshat Korach tells how Korach instigated a rebellion against the leadership of Moses. This act involved a surprising amount of chutzpah, given the ...


Man Is a Tree

Man Is a Tree

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The Torah compares a person to a tree. Roots, branches, leaves. What's the connection?


One Step at a Time

One Step at a Time

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


Higher Than the Angels

Higher Than the Angels

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This week's Parsha begins with the Mitzvah to "Be holy." How do we achieve holiness? The Torah provides many avenues, and keeping Kosher in a ...


God Brought Us Out

God Brought Us Out

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"In all the gods of Egypt will I execute judgment... I am God and no other."


Battle of the Spies

Battle of the Spies

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In Parshat Shlach, Moses sends 12 people to scout out the Land of Israel. They return with the conclusion that there's no way to win a battle ...


Divine Paradigm

Divine Paradigm

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


To Pray or Not to Pray

To Pray or Not to Pray

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Harold is walking down a darkened alley, when he's suddenly confronted by two masked men carrying guns. Fearing for his life, Harold throws his ...


Animal Offerings

Animal Offerings

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This week's Parsha presents a lengthy, detailed description of animal offerings in the Holy Temple – burning of limbs, sprinkling of blood, ...


Fear of Freedom

Fear of Freedom

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Rabbi Shraga Simmons shares an inspiring insight from the weekly Torah portion. Your life can change in just one minute! To download the MP3 ...


Fresh Enthusiasm

Fresh Enthusiasm

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This week's parsha describes how Aaron, the high priest, would light the Menorah every day in the Tabernacle. The verse emphasizes that "Aaron did ...


Bris Milah Beautiful or Barbaric?

Bris Milah Beautiful or Barbaric?

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Human rights groups are trying to make circumcision an illegal act of child molestation.


Message For Me

Message For Me

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Parshat Naso juxtaposes two seemingly unrelated topics: first is the suspected adulterer (the Sotah), followed by a discussion of the Nazirite, ...


The Western Wall: Yesterday and Today

The Western Wall: Yesterday and Today

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The Wall did not always look like it does today.