About the Author


Nesanel Yoel Safran

Nesanel Yoel Safran is a writer, chef, and a teacher/student of Jewish spirituality. He blends these assorted vocations on his blog, Soul Foodie, where you can join him on mystical cooking adventures and glean practical wisdom for the kitchen – and for living. https://soulfoodiecom.wordpress.com/


The Gift of Closeness

This week's portion teaches us the secret of how to become closer to someone else - by giving to...

Hidden Good

A big lesson of Purim is that sometimes things that seem bad are really God's hidden ways of...

A Job Well Done

Whatever we do, we should try to do it right and not just half-heartedly. In this week's portion...

Willing to Try

What is the secret to success? We might think that success depends on training, talent and...

Accepting Ourselves

In this week's Torah portion we learn about the special mixture of incense spices that was used...

A Surprising Uplift

OVERVIEW Sometimes the things that knock us down are exactly the things that lift us up. In...

Having Integrity

In this week's Torah portion we learn that the holy ark which held within it the tablets of the...

Thanking Our Parents

While we should treat everyone with respect, when it comes to our parents, the people who gave...

Being Humble

In this week's Torah Portion, Moses shows us one of the things that made him great. When his...

Being Greedy

There is nothing wrong with taking what we need, but taking more than we need just because we...

Being Stubborn

Who doesn't prefer for things to go the way we'd like them to? But when they don't and we...

Keeping Promises

Although we can't see it or touch it, our word is one of the most important things we possess....

Seeing Our True Abilities

Each of us has inside ourselves the ability to accomplish much more than we realize. Yet...

Unique Blessings

We all admire great people and wish we could be great too. The truth is we can, and it's easier...

The Secret of Forgiveness

Forgiving people and not holding grudges against them is not only good for them -it's also good...

Using Our Strength

There's more to Chanukah than spinning tops and eating potato pancakes. The first Chanukah...

Not Being Jealous

Sometimes we feel jealous - that if we had what someone else has, our lives would be better and...

Acting on Impulse

It's important to learn how to keep our cool even when things get hot. Acting rashly or...

Blessing in Disguise

How should we react when things don't go the way we want them to? In this week's Torah portion,...

Strong Words

When people get into a conflict, it may seem the only way out is to fight it out. But the Torah...

True Kindness

It is important to be kind, but what if being kind in one way will end up causing us to be...

Jewish Hospitality

Hospitality - taking in and taking care of guests - is a timeless Jewish value. Abraham, the...

Standing Against the Crowd

Being part of a group is great, but it can also drag us down if there is some negative behavior...

Keep It Clean

Even though we may realize the value of keeping ourselves and our environment clean, we may not...

Creating The World

When we think about the beginning of the world when everything was first created, it was so long...

Count People In

One of the important lessons of Sukkot is tolerance - that it takes all of kinds of Jews to make...

Family Parsha Yom Kippur 5765

Everyone makes mistakes - it's only human. A lot of times, we feel bad if we do something we...

Don't Waste Things

God gives us so many good things. He wants us to enjoy the good of the world, but He doesn't...

Acting In Our Best Interest

Sometimes we find ourselves acting in ways that are self-destructive, even when we know better....

We Are All Connected

How we act doesn't affect ourselves alone. It influences others too. This is why a person can't...

The More We Have

It is natural to feel that the more we have the happier we will be. But the truth is that it...

Pick Ourselves Up

Who hasn't, at one time or another, said or done something we wish we hadn't? But that's no...

Caring for God's Creatures

Animals are God's creatures too, and He wants us to make sure to treat them right. This week's...

How to Excel

Who wouldn't love to excel - to experience and achieve more than most people ever do? It sounds...

Ten Percent

Tithing - the practice of passing along a percentage of whatever we earn or receive to a worthy...

Kind and Caring

We all know how important it is to care about others. God wants us to be kind and caring, and He...

Faith Healing

A father's struggle with faith amidst loss and pain.

Others' Needs

Most people don't have any trouble being concerned about their own wants and needs. When we're...

Beautiful Planet

God gave us a beautiful planet to live on, and He wants us to take good care of it. In this...

Close to Someone Far

There are different ways of being close to someone else. One way is to be physically near him,...

Responsibility Pays

There are different ways to teach people the right way to behave. Sometimes a gentle word, or...

The Best Connection

This week's Torah portion speaks about the greatness of the Land of Israel and how special it is...

Individuality On the Field

Every one of us is unique. Each person has his own special talents, tastes, and ways of...

Let's Play Fair

Our desire to get ahead and reach our goals can tempt us to act in a less than upright manner....

Good Speech

What is called innocent but is, in fact, really deadly? What is called juicy, but is, in fact,...

The Transition

Many times life requires us to make transitions from something old and familiar to something new...

With Love For All

We are now in the midst of a three-week period (from the 17th of the Jewish month, Tamuz, until...

Too Much of a Good Thing

If a little bit is good, then a lot must be better, right? Not necessarily. In this week's Torah...

Confrontation and Peace

It is important to seek peace, but that doesn't mean we should run away from all conflicts and...

Being Important

Some people just naturally seem to attract a lot of attention. Their look, style, and what they...

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