Rabbi Irwin A. Zeplowitz

Rabbi Irwin A. Zeplowitz is senior rabbi at The Community Synagogue in Port Washington, New York. He has taught at Kolel: The Adult Centre for Liberal Jewish Learning in Toronto, JLearn on Long Island, and the URJ Kallah. He is immediate past president of the Alumni Association of Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion and was chair of the Joint Commission on Sustaining Rabbinic Education. Rabbi Zeplowitz can be reached at rabbiz@commsyn.org.

The Real American Idol

D'Var Torah By: Rabbi Irwin A. Zeplowitz

The popular television show American Idol seeks the most talented singers, hoping to promote each one as the next "superstar." There is a lot that is positive about American Idol. It is founded on the belief that there is the potential for great talent in anyone.

Give Ear!

D'Var Torah By: Rabbi Irwin A. Zeplowitz

The book A Natural History of the Senses by Diane Ackerman is a beautifully written examination of the five senses. Using the insights of modern scientific research, the author poetically discusses the miracle of the natural world.

Hide and Seek

D'Var Torah By: Rabbi Irwin A. Zeplowitz

In discussions with pre- b'nei mitzvah students and parents every year, I ask how they would feel about someone attending services in ripped jeans. What about a woman wearing a dress or blouse showing cleavage? What is proper attire in a synagogue?

The Color Purple . . . and Blue . . . and Red

D'Var Torah By: Rabbi Irwin A. Zeplowitz

This week's parashah seems, at first glance, to be a rather pedantic listing of the items needed for the construction of the Mishkan . At one level of understanding, it may simply be what it appears to be—specifically, a"shopping list" of items sought from donors.

Escape from Freedom

D'Var Torah By: Rabbi Irwin A. Zeplowitz

What is it that Moses demands of Pharaoh? Ask most people and they will respond,"Let my people go." Indeed, in Cecil B. DeMille's retelling of the Exodus in the movie The Ten Commandments (1956), that is exactly what Charlton Heston (as Moses) does ask.