Vayishlach Videos

A taste of Shazak Parsha, where the weekly Torah portion comes alive! Geared for kids... Great for adults!
Vayishlach Parshah Report
Jono learns some wrestling pointers from our forefather Jacob
A 90 second insight on parshat Vayishlach
Learn from Jacob’s encounter with Esau how to approach life’s challenges and battles.
As a remembrance that Jacob's sciatic nerve was damaged in his wrestling match with an angel, the Torah forbids us from eating the sciatic nerve (gid hanashe) of an animal. Interestingly, this also shows us the extent to which every detail of our lives is directed by Divine Providence.
Practical Parshah—Vayishlach
The story of Jacob’s struggle with an angel provides the source for the prohibition of eating the sciatic nerve of an animal. In this class, other complicated issues involving the preparation of kosher meat are also discussed.
Life Lessons from Parshat Vayishlach
From Jacob’s fearless encounter with Esau we derive a powerful message in standing firm in our commitment to Torah.
Fleeing Laban, now Jacob confronts the evil Esau; enroute with murder in mind. Seeking to inhibit his brother's baleful intent; he sends a mollifying message – its literal elucidation is our initial point of departure. Then piercing the veil, the biblical characters are recast as cosmic spiritual paradigms, as profound mystical ideas are revealed. With broad brush strokes, the Kabbalistic panorama is outlined, as we laser into the teachings of the Chassidic Masters, with specific emphasis on a particular late 20th century discourse. The take away? We can all learn to create order out of chaos to live better and more fulfilling lives today!
Letters and Numbers of Torah - Vayishlach
In the verse (Genesis 33:4) that tells us how Esau kissed Jacob, the word "kissed" has a dot over each letter. How does this hint to the idea that the greatest enemy of spiritual growth is the resistance to studying the mystical parts of Torah?
How to Study Torah - Vayishlach
How Jacob prepared for a potentially deadly confrontation with his murderous brother, Esau. Discover the Torah’s “rules of engagement” in a time when we’re forced to wage war rather than make peace.
From Likutei Sichos - Vayishlach
Jacob hid his daughter from the wicked Esau. But did Dinah actually have the power to make Esau repent? Based on the commentary of Rashi on the verse (Genesis 32:23) "And [Jacob] arose during that night, and he took his two wives and his two maidservants and his eleven children, and he crossed the ford of [the River] Jabbok." From Likutei Sichos, vol. 35, pp.150-155.
Returning for Three Little Jars
After Yaakov transfers his family and belongings across the stream, he returns alone to retrieve small jars. This backtracking led to his dangerous encounter with the ministering angel of Eisav. Learn the classic commentaries and the deeper message on this episode.
Study some of the highlights of the weekly Torah portion with insights from various commentaries.
Decoding the hidden messages
The parshah of Vayishlach contains 154 verses and the mnemonic for it is the word ‘kelitah’ (which means to absorb). Explore the coded message in this Masoretic note and its connection to the general themes of the Parshah.
The story of the world’s first Jewish tombstone!
Learn the biblical story of our matriarch Rachel’s passing and unusual burial at the side of the road, and discover the incredible significance of Rachel’s Tomb.
Parshah Curiosities: Vayishlach
There’s an ancient custom to recite the Torah portion of Vayishlach prior to embarking on dangerous travel. Yaakov’s encounter with Eisav conveys remarkable directions in facing unnatural challenges and mortal enemies.
Why we don’t eat sirloin steak
A tantalizing teaching about the improbable prohibition against sirloin steak; featuring varying flavours of rabbinic reasoning and seasoning. Discover the ultimate purpose behind this mitzvah of Gid Hanasheh (sciatic nerve); illuminating the sweep of Jewish history, down to the tiny details. Deeply scholarly, this rumination draws upon a wide range of classical sources, yet provides the student with inspiring and practical lessons for life.
Parsha Curiosities: Vayishlach
Arriving in Shechem, Dina ventured out to observe the local girls. She was abducted by the Crown Prince, who violently raped and abused her. Without seeking counsel, two of her brothers brutally massacred the townspeople along with the perpetrator. Does the Torah sanction or condemn their unilateral actions?
Following an hours-long nocturnal struggle, as dawn breaks, a strange verbal exchange begins between Jacob and the mysterious creature that viciously attacked and maimed him. Fascinating analysis of the conversation’s contents lead us into a discovery of what was really happening on that dark and fateful night. Ultimately, much is learnt about the power and importance of Jewish names. Multiple meaningful takeaways include the possibility of your Hebrew name coloring your life’s experiences.
A Taste of Text—Vayishlach
How to react when confronted with an opportunity that may challenge, tempt or oppose your beliefs or goals . . .
The Torah relates how our forefather Jacob behaved when he dwelled with Laban. Overcoming all the challenging circumstances he found himself in, he remained loyal and true to serving G-d despite them. While this steadfastness was a clear demonstration of where Jacob’s true allegiance lay, it still wasn’t the true fulfilment of his potential.
We all like to be right and to win. It can be hard to have the objectivity and humility to admit that we err. Especially if we can win with a “cheap shot” -- that makes us come out on top, but diminishes our true integrity. Gain insight into how a temporary setback can sometimes be an ultimate win, building deeper character.
Topics include: The advantages of the chaotic energy of Tohu, the double identity of Jacob's wrestling opponent, the deeper meaning of the mitzvah not to eat the sciatic nerve.
Parshah Nuggets: Vayishlach
After wrestling all night with an angel, Jacob is renamed “Israel,” which means “to strive.”
Something Spiritual on Parshat Vayishlach
Standing under the wedding Chupah, the groom and bride are forgiven of all sins—why?
Something Spiritual on Parshat Vayishlach
A powerful story illustrates the importance of recognizing the source of our blessings and learning gratitude from the Torah.
The 3 Pillars of Torah, Prayer and Acts of Kindness
The world, our Sages tell us, stands on three pillars—Torah, Avodah (Prayer) and Acts of Kindness. This class will explore the inner dimension and effect of these 'pillars', both on the individual and the world at large. (Based on the maamor Podoh B'sholom 5716)
The power of an emissary (shliach)
Five levels of meaning to the concept of shaliach, an emissary to carry out the mission for which one was appointed.
Exploring Rashi’s commentary on why Eisav moved away
When Yaakov returns home a wealthy man, after decades of living afar, Esav quickly emigrates. Why?
Analyzing the true meaning of ‘Bitachon’, placing one’s trust in G-d, which goes beyond having faith in G-d. The analysis begins with a closer look at the biblical narratives wherein Moses and Jacob seem to display a lack of complete trust in the Al-mighty. (Based on a talk of the Rebbe in Likkutei Sichos vol.36 p.1)
Yaakov Sends Messengers to Eisav
Ch. 32, verses 4-8: Introduction, Yaakov sends messengers to Esau. He is told that he is coming to meet him with four hundred men. He is afraid and distressed by the news and he divides all that he has into two camps.
Yaakov Confronts Eisav
Ch. 32, verses 9-13: Yaakov divides his possessions into two camps. Then he prays to Hashem to save him from his brother Esau.
Yaakov sends gifts to Esau
Ch. 32, verses 14-25: Yaakov separates the animals that he will send to Esau, and tells his servants exactly what to say to his brother. He moves his family and possessions across the stream of Jabbok. He returns for some small jars that he had forgotten and there he encounters a man that he wrestles with.
Yaakov wrestles with Esau's angel
Ch. 32, verses 25-33: Yaakov wrestles with Esau's angel and is victorious. However, the angel is able to injure him in his thigh. He will not allow the angel to leave until his receives a blessing. G-d makes the sun rise early so that Yaakov can be healed from his injury. To commemorate this event Hashem commands us not to eat the "Gid Hanasheh" the sciatic nerve.
The Abduction of Dinah
Ch. 34, verses 1-24: Dinah the daughter of Yaakov is raped by Shechem the prince of the city. He falls in love with her and wants to marry her. He and his father approach Yaakov and his sons asking for their permission. They say that they will only agree on the condition that they and all the male inhabitants of the city circumcise themselves. They agree, and do so immediately. They then convince all the men in the city to do the same.
Shimon and Levi kill the entire city of Shechem
Ch. 34, verse 24-31 Ch. 35, verses 1-13: All the men of the city of Shechem allow themselves to be circumcised. On the third day after their circumcision Shimon and Levi kill out Shem, Chamor, and all the men. They take Dinah and all the brothers loot the city. Yaakov criticizes them for their act. Ch. 35, Hashem tells Yaakov to build Him an alter. He tells his household to purify themselves. He goes to Bais El and he builds an alter there and names it for the place. Devorah dies there an he buries her under the oak. Hashem gives him a new name, Yisrael, and once again promises him the land.
Rachel gives birth to Binyamin
Ch. 35, verses 14-31 ch. 36, verse 1-43: Rachel gives birth to Binyamin. She dies in childbirth and is buried outside of Bethlehem. Yaakov places a headstone on her grave. Ruevain moves the bed of his father. Torah lists the twelve sons of Yaakov. Yitzhok dies at the age of 180 and is buried by Esau and Yaakov. Ch. 36, lists the genealogy of the descendants of Esau.
Did you know that Ralph Lauren was born as Ralph Ruben Lifshitz! In this week's ParshahCast we look at another famous Jewish celebrity who also had his name changed. Find out who, and why.
The meaning of the name "Israel" emphasizes the importance of effort and struggle in our relationship with G-d. Presenter: Rabbi Gestetner
30 second animated shorts using stick figures to explore Jewish philosophy. Bizarre yet intriguing. Oh, and kind of funny.
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