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Parsha Perks

Perquisites for daily life percolated in the Rebbe's teachings on the parsha.

7:07
Angelic intellects can perceive the sublime secret essence of each and every creature made by the Creator. And yet the human intellect can see even more.
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7:10
Abraham’s mission was to explore the final frontier. Only there would he find his innermost identity. (parsha perks with Dr. Chighel | Lech Lecha)
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6:59
Some well-meaning folk believe that a little bit of experience in romantic relationships is a good preparation for marriage. The Torah teaches that it’s the single worst possible preparation. (“Parsha Perks” with Dr Michael Chighel | Chayei Sarah)
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4:42
Envy is a grievous sin. It’s on the top ten list engraved on Moses’s stone tablets. And yet even envy can assume a form that is healthy and holy. (“Parsha Perks” with Dr Michael Chighel | Veyetze)
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5:10
Even the greatest judge can make a gross misjudgement if humility is lacking. (“Parsha Perks” with Dr Michael Chighel | Vayeshev)
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6:28
It’s nice to be nice … until something of vital importance is at stake. (“Parsha Perks” with Dr Michael Chighel | Vayigash)
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3:21
It would be helpful to know the date of the final Redemption. But the Redemption would not be perfect were it brought about with such help. (“Parsha Perks” with Dr Michael Chighel | Vayechi)
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5:25
Faith means absolute trust in G-d. But there is something still greater than faith. (“Parsha Perks” with Dr Michael Chighel | Shemot)
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3:13
At the core of idolatry lurks a reptilian coldness to life. (“Parsha Perks” with Dr Michael Chighel | Va’era)
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3:21
A lesson based on Moses's complaint to G-d that the divine plan to redeem the Israelites from Egypt actually made their lives worse.
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2:59
Is there an ideal velocity for kicking a bad habit? When the Israelites left Egypt, they did so "in a rush" (behipazon). While the soul could take its own good time in detaching itself from an addictive situation, the body is not so patient.
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5:23
It’s best to walk away from a fight. Except when the enemy threatens one’s holiest possession. (Parsha Perks | Beshalach | with Dr Michael Chighel)
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3:20
When you feel like you’re being hunted down by troubles in life, by “enemies,” is G-d simply the One you turn to in the hopes of gaining a divine ally to defeat your enemies? Or are your troubles themselves somehow on your side too?
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3:59
As Author of the Torah, as well as Author of the universe, G-d has the ultimate Authority on all matters great and small. And yet does this mean that human beings can never speak with authority? Are we just silent pawns in a divine chess game?
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4:36
Cruelty towards animals is strictly forbidden by the Torah. For two distinct reasons: one intrinsic to the life of the animal itself; the other extrinsic, yet no less important ... indeed, perhaps even more important.
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6:25
If being an adult means being rational, then what does it mean to be a child? Does it mean being irrational? To the extent that religion involves the childlike gesture of “faith” (Emunah), it would seem to be an irrational, immature enterprise. Unless of course there is a viable adult alternative to Rationalism and Irrationalism alike.
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3:54
The natural craving that each person has for recognition from other human beings sometimes swells without bounds into a monstrous desire for fame. The secret essence of fame, however, appears only in the “loneliest” moments with G-d.
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4:48
The only thing to be done with sinful behavior is to stop it, to repent for it, and never to return to it. As for the power of desire that leads to the sin, it has significantly more positive possibilities.
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5:31
Determination, obstinacy and ambition are essential attitudes for striving to reach one’s spiritual goals. But if a good stiff neck is not tempered by humility, then it becomes very difficult to move one’s head.
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5:54
The sensual aspect of human existence is heavy with potential for impure doings. And yet this same potential holds the secret of the copper laver used by the Kohanim to wash their hands and feet in preparation for their holy services in the Mishkan.
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6:25
If you hurt someone’s feelings as a result of a mere slip of the tongue, presumably there is nothing to be sorry for. Presumably it “meant nothing.” Unless, of course, unconscious gestures are even more meaningful than conscious ones.
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5:43
There is more than one way to minimize the spiritual distance between oneself and G-d. Some of these ways will become obsolete in the Messianic era. But the way of gratitude has no expiry date.
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4:38
Our natural human desire to get close to G-d sometimes leads us to pursue methods of religious ecstasy. Yet our human desire to be close to G-d may well be at odds with G-d’s divine desire to be close to us.
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6:35
According to the talmudic sage Rabbi Yitzchak, the advent of the Messianic Era is a revolutionary upturning of heretical governments. The sage Rava offers another, less violent interpretation of this revolution.
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6:15
The Metzora is the consummate Outsider. Of his own accord, he exists on the margins of society. And yet his tormented ostracism is the place where he finds his innermost connection with G-d.
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4:21
The inner principle of celibacy is self-removal from the temptations and distractions of mundane daily life for the sake of a pursuit of holiness. According to the Torah, however, the holiest of holy possibilities is to be found precisely in the most mundane aspect of existence.
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7:12
To study G-d’s wisdom as it is revealed in the Torah is arguably the most sublime activity a human being can do. And yet the Torah itself is about activities other than Torah study.
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7:30
The maturity and confidence of an adult psyche can be gauged by its ability to face criticism. Yet, criticism may not be the best method for cultivating this maturity in the child.
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7:00
In order to get some intimation of the Infinite One Who is beyond all conception, the mind naturally fills in what is inconceivable with ideas that are logical and comprehensible. A still deeper appreciation of Infinity thus requires a certain hollowing out of the mind.
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7:13
The obvious coefficient of Jewish identity is peoplehood. And yet the Jewish people cannot be defined without reference to the family.
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6:01
Confession, as of contrition and repentance, is not always sincere. But even the most insincere confession retains a special power to put one on the right track.
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6:01
Extreme humility is sometimes confused with low self-esteem. For Moses, these were as different as day and night.
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8:06
If life is a mission, then everything depends on keeping one’s eyes on the objective.
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8:50
The Red Heifer is the single most incomprehensible commandment in the Torah. By the same token, it most accurately represents the most incomprehensible part of the soul.
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9:22
Anti-Semitism is a powerful, negative, thoroughly unholy phenomenon. Stripped of its negativity, however, its raw power can be used in the service of holiness.
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9:04
The Land of Israel is Heaven’s perfectly suitable gift suited for the Jewish people. By the same token, it is beyond what the Jews can ever deserve.
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8:19
Jerusalem belongs to the holy geography of the Land of Israel. Jerusalem is also to be found outside the Land of Israel, outside geography.
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3:03
When challenges come your way, you can confront them head-on. Better, however, is to come down upon them from above.
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3:11
Torah and mitzvot are never very far from a Jew. They are no farther, in fact, than his or her identity
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6:14
Cruel intentions often lead to cruel actions. Yet the goodness of actions cannot be judged from their intentions. (Parsha Perks | Pinchas | with Dr Michael Chighel)
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6:21
G-d loves you. Even when it seems otherwise. (Parsha Perks | Devarim | with Dr Michael Chighel)
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7:05
Put in the proper perspective, even a whale of a challenge can be nothing at all. (Parsha Perks | Ve’etchanan | with Dr Michael Chighel)
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