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Tuesday, January 14, 2020

Halachic Times (Zmanim)
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Jewish History

In 1684, a group of Spanish and Portuguese Jews who fled the Inquisition (see "Today in Jewish History" for Tevet 22) held a Rosh Hashanah service in New Amsterdam, thereby founding congregation Shearith Israel ("Remnant of Israel"). On this 17th of Tevet in 1728, the congregation purchased a lot in Lower Manhattan to erect the first synagogue in New York.

Rabbi Aaron Zelig ben Joel Feivush of Ostrog, Russia, author of Toldot Aaron, passed away on Tevet 17 of the year in 5515 from creation (1754).

Tevet 17 is also the yahrtzeit of Rabbi Yaakov Wolf Krantz (1740-1804), the Maggid (preacher) of Dubna, particularly known for the parables (meshalim) he employed in his sermons and writings.

Daily Thought

There are only two things:
The One Above,
and you below.
For all the world is nothing more than the means by which you will connect the two.

If you learn some new Torah wisdom today,
it is precisely what you need to know for the next step of your life's mission.
Perhaps to do a certain mitzvah.
Perhaps to assist you avoid the opposite.
Or perhaps this learning itself is an essential part of your mission.

And since you know that for the other person the same holds true—he is also the center of his world—therefore some good must come from this knowledge for you to help that person in his life’s mission to connect above and below.

Whether you know of it or not, there is always a purpose—and a very specific purpose—to whatever enters your world at the time that it enters. For G-d does not create anything in your world for nothing.

Reshimot, 44.