Daily Wisdom, an anthology of 378 daily inspirational lessons culled from the vast and deep Torah teachings of the Lubavitcher Rebbe—Rabbi Menachem M. Schneerson, of righteous memory—was the gold winner in the religion category of the prestigious 2015 Benjamin Franklin Awards. The book is published by Kehot Publication Society.

Administered by the Independent Book Publishers Association, the award is widely regarded as one of the highest national honors for publishers in the United States.

The lessons in Daily Wisdom are apportioned according to the day-to-day study cycle of the Torah, covering another section of the weekly Torah reading. The teachings were rendered into English and adapted by Rabbi Moshe Wisnefsky. The book was produced by Chabad House Publications of California and published by Kehot in July of 2014. Following the book’s initial success, it was recently republished in a compact format as the Asher David Milstein Edition.

“The Rebbe’s inspirational teachings are a relevant and living source of wisdom and comfort to people of every walk of life,” noted Rabbi Chaim Nochum Cunin, director of Chabad House Publications. “Daily Wisdom is a vehicle through which thousands of people are now being personally impacted by these teachings. We are honored that this important contribution was recognized by the Independent Book Publishers Association.”

The following excerpt is a teaching for Thursday, May 7, 2015, when the fifth section of the portion of Emor is read. (Leviticus 23:23–32)

Summary of Daily Portion

Passover is followed seven weeks later by the holiday of Shavuot (“Weeks”). Although the months of the Jewish year are numbered from Nissan, the years are counted as beginning on the first day of Tishrei, the seventh month. The first of Tishrei is thus Rosh Hashanah, “the Beginning of the Year.” This holiday is marked by the sounding of the shofar, a ram’s horn, except when it coincides with the Sabbath.

Spiritual Heights of the Sabbath

G‑d told Moses: “The first day of the seventh month [Tishrei] will be ... a remembrance of the shofar blast.”

The sounding of the shofar on the first day of the year elicits new Divine energy that will sustain all creation, spiritual and physical, for that year. However, when Rosh Hashanah coincides with the Sabbath, the shofar is not sounded; we only “remember” it by mentioning it in our prayers.

This is because blowing the shofar on the Sabbath is not only superfluous, but pointless. G‑d’s sovereignty over us is the primary theme of Rosh Hashanah. Sounding the shofar at G‑d’s “coronation” is our declaration of our renewed selfless and voluntary submission to His sovereignty. The need for such a declaration, however, implies that we are conscious of ourselves as independent beings who must submit to G‑d intentionally. Such self-awareness characterizes our consciousness on weekdays. On the Sabbath, in contrast, when we are inherently absorbed in our heightened Divine consciousness, such a declaration is redundant.

Source: Sefer HaSichot 5749, Vol. 2, pp. 705-707

Administered by the Independent Book Publishers Association, the award is widely regarded as one of the highest national honors for publishers in the United States.
Administered by the Independent Book Publishers Association, the award is widely regarded as one of the highest national honors for publishers in the United States.