Neal Katz

We All Will Die, But We Must Be Grateful

D'Var Torah By: Rabbi Reuven Firestone

September 26, 2016
Sukkot is known in Rabbinic tradition as the "Festival of Our Joy" (Z'man Simchateinu, a name that derives from Leviticus 23:40: "You shall rejoice before the Eternal your God seven days"). Sukkot is the only festival for which the command to rejoice is given. It is a commandment — a mitzvah: us'mach'tem — "be happy!"

Leadership and Letting Go

D'Var Torah By: Rabbi Dr. Edwin C. Goldberg

November 30, 2015
Can you say chutzpah? How about arrogance? Or is ignorance a more appropriate word for people behaving badly? When I served a congregation in Hollywood, I met many performers who were both prominent and very fine human beings. But on occasion, I met one who plays a beloved movie or...

The Joseph Story - Part III: Absolute Exile

D'Var Torah By: Rabbi David H. Aaron

December 22, 2014
The most intractable theological conundrum of all monotheistic religions is the question of how God is manifest in history. Oftentimes the whole issue of divine involvement in historical events is distilled to the problem of evil and undeserved suffering-what is frequently labeled the problem of"theodicy."The issue can be framed simply...

Joseph and Potiphar's Wife: Conscience Over Consequence

D'Var Torah By: Neal Katz

December 5, 2014
Focal Point After a time, his master's [Potiphar's] wife cast her eyes upon Joseph and said, "Lie with me." But he [Joseph] refused. He said to his master's wife, "Look, with me here, my master gives no thought to anything in this house, and all that he owns he has...

Tamar’s Staff, Signet Seal, and Cord

D'Var Torah By: Dr. Carol Ochs

December 3, 2012
This portion can be read as the first of the Joseph stories or the culmination of the sibling rivalry that has plagued the families of Genesis. But taking a perspective that joins the dreams of Joseph to the story of Tamar, we can read this as a portion about free...