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Parshah Columnists Miketz

Guest Columnists
Osnat: A Woman Who Shows Us How to Be a Victor, Not a Victim
Like many of us, Osnat was raised in an environment not conducive to Torah values.
Why Joseph Changed His Clothing
Even in Egypt, Joseph remained committed to the religion of his youth and the G‑d of his forefathers. What was his secret?
How to Author Your Own Story
We can act with compassion or criticism, curiosity or control, unconditional love or judgment. Instead of resisting life, let life be your teacher.
The Mystic Brother
Not much has changed in 3,600 years...
Why did they find it so very difficult to accept the guidance of a mystic brother, yet so easy to be subservient to a foreign Pharaoh?
Goal Setting Joseph’s Way
A 12-Step Biblical Program
Let's see if we can get some free Goal Setting advice from the Torah, without having to spend millions of dollars on research, or even $25 on a hardcover self-help book...
Local Dust
The 2000 Year Dream
To date, I never dreamt that sheaves of wheat bowed to me. I have also never dreamt about bulimic bovines or anorexic agriculture. Then again, I am not the biblical Joseph or Pharaoh, the king of Egypt...
Flames and Fortitude
Parshat Mikeitz
Imagine if we were able to take a half an hour out of our day and just sit and relax, completely guilt free. And yet, for eight straight days this is exactly what we are commanded to do...
"The Nile" or "De-nial"?
A similar global "recession" of sorts, is spoken about in the Torah, one that resulted in the emergence of a new world order that would forever change the course of history.
Wedding Speeches for Mikeitz
Benevolent Markers
What Goes Around Comes Around (Till You Make It Stop)
Sitting on the steps of the Montgomery County courthouse appeared to be a homeless man. My husband is a lawyer, and as he passed by this man on his way into the building, the man called out, “Hey, rabbi! Give me a blessing.”
It's About Time
An Essay on Mikeitz
“And it came to pass, at the end of two full years” signals that the time has come for something to occur. The “how” of the matter is trivial – Pharaoh has a dream, the chief butler happens to be present, other events align, and ultimately, they all cross the threshold simultaneously, reaching their ketz at precisely the right time.
Reuben and Repentance
Instead of falling short of true repentance, Reuben encouraged his brothers to maximize and upgrade their penitence.
Torah Insights
Why Joseph Framed Benjamin
In order for their descendants to survive the harsh exile, Joseph’s brothers, who were the heads of the tribes of Israel, had to experience the oppression and accusations of the Egyptian monarch.
Joseph the Charmer
Woven throughout the story of Joseph’s life are dreams and their interpretations.
Weekly Sermonette
The Slow Road to Instant Success
Does one really become an overnight success from one moment to the next? It normally takes years of quiet work.
Wake Up Calls
It's ok to take one day at a time. It's not ok to go back to sleep after you get a wake up call...
Famine in the Land
Brilliant dream interpretation. But who asked you for any advice? Where does a young man, who a moment ago was languishing in prison, get the temerity to offer eitzos -- unsolicited advice -- to none other than the king himself?
Of Shepherds and Statesmen
Is isolationism the only way to live as faithful Jews, or can we scale the ghetto walls and still remain devout? This is, of course, an ongoing debate among different schools of thought in our community...
Parshah Insights
Joseph's Wisdom
You must never detach the years of plenty from the years of famine. When you experience plenty, do not let it blind your vision and desensitize you from what is truly important in life.
For Friday Night
Working For Miracles
Do miracles happen today? When opening this weeks Torah portion we will see two different sorts of miracles and how we could see miracles in our lives today.
Two Prototypes of Spirituality
What is our image of a spiritual person, a man or woman of G-d?
Responsibility for the World
A situation which has occurred many times in the history of the Jewish people: the non-Jewish ruling power appoints a wise Jew to a senior position as advisor or administrator...
What the Rebbe Taught Me
The Origin of the Jewish Work Ethic
Is there really such a thing as a "Jewish work ethic"? If yes, where did it originate? Who is the only man dubbed by the Bible "a successful man"?
The Repentance Litmus Test
With his harsh rebuke, Reuben seems to have acted unreasonably petty for holding onto old grudges, and harsh for underscoring and even adding to his brother's culpability.
Inner Stream
Where Am I?
Our GPS may tell us where we are, but does it also tell us who we are?
G-d and the Butler
Why did the butler forget all about Joseph? And what would have happened if he hadn’t?
Emotional Starvation
When we understand that bullying behavior is often rooted in emotional starvation, we can respond with compassion and loving strength.
A Thought for the Week
An Order to Circumcise
When the Egyptians come for food during the years of famine, Joseph orders them to be circumcised. Why would Joseph make such a peculiar command?
Parshah Musings
When All Else Fails, Pray!
Believers are often accused of forsaking all personal initiative in their passive acceptance of the vicissitudes of fate. Nothing could be further from the truth...
The Art of Delegation
I think back to the thousands of hours the Rebbe devoted to serving the needs and whims of individuals. If he had mastered the art of delegation why did he personally have to stand for hours every Sunday handing out dollar bills?
The Seven Fat Cows
Don’t run away from the dream, don’t look for some other meaning. If the cosmic slumber of galut presents you with the paradox of the fat cow and the lean cow grazing together, make the dream the solution. Even Pharaoh recognizes good advice when he sees it.
Parshah Recovery
Hard Work
We alcoholics and addicts know all too well how fast and easy payoffs come back to haunt us. But this pertains not only to our drinking days but to our recovery as well...
Covenant & Conversation
The Universal and the Particular
How does a Jew speak to a non-Jew about G‑d? What is particular and what is universal in the religious life? In its approach to this, Judaism is unique.
Jews and Economics
A reasonable case could be made that Joseph was the first economist. But why the predominance of Jews in economics in the modern age?
The Author of our Lives
What we want to happen, happens, but not always when we expect, or in the way we expect, or merely because we wanted it to happen.
To Wait Without Despair
Whatever happened to Joseph was the result of someone else’s deed: those of his father, his brothers, his master’s wife, the chief jailer, or G‑d himself. Joseph was the ball thrown by hands other than his own.
A disguise is an act of hiding—from others, and perhaps from oneself. From G‑d, however, we cannot, nor do we need to, hide.
Appearance and Reality
Hubris is usually punished by nemesis and so it was in Joseph’s case. Far from being a ruler, his brothers turned him into a slave. That, however, turned out not to be the end of the story but only the beginning.
Living through the Parshah
The Visionary Soul
Where is that fine line between healthy self-compassion and debilitating self-pity?
Beyond Speech
Joseph’s Sons and Chanukah
What lesson can we take from Joseph? Why did Manasseh come first? How does this connect to Chanukah?
On the Haftarah: Are You Cutting Your Baby in Half?
For the haftarah of Mikeitz, From the Teachings of the Rebbe
On the Haftarah: The Daughters of Zion, the Golden Menorah, and Joshua the High Priest
A commentary on the haftarah of Shabbat Chanukah
Life's Passages
Two Keys to Survive and Thrive, Despite Personal Challenges
Life sends all of us harsh tests and trials. Joseph teaches us the two essential keys to survive them.
What Do You Think?
How Did Joseph Become the Most Politically Powerful Jew in History?
How did Joseph have the proper leadership skills to be the most politically powerful Jew of all time?
The Freeman Files
Lighten Out
The Dreamer
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