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Mendel Kaplan

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Rabbi Mendel Kaplan is the Spiritual Leader and Executive Director of Chabad Flamingo in Thornhill, Ontario, serving one of Canada’s most dynamic Jewish communities. He also serves as Chaplain of the York Regional Police Service. He is an active member of Toronto’s Vaad HaRabbanim (Council of Orthodox Rabbis), and a voting member of the COR Kashruth Council of Canada’s executive rabbinical board. Rabbi Kaplan is featured regularly on many local television and radio shows. He is a sought after speaker, with hundreds of lectures are on Chabad.org. He and his wife, Faygie, are blessed with eight children. Artistically endowed, the rabbi enjoys drawing, sketching and creating charcoal portraits.

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Intermediate Talmud: Tractate Shabbat, Lesson 38
Evolving from the previous discussion about organic vegetative sources of fuel best used for Shabbat candles, we now wander into a seemingly tangential subject of analysis, focused on the Halachik definition of cloth and clothing – vis-à-vis the various o...
Intermediate Talmud: Tractate Shabbat, Lesson 37
Furthering the previous discussion about substances that can or can't be used to keep Shabbat serenity burning, we segue into the nature of vegetative sources of the required fuel. In the biblical image of illumination, the olive looms large; the question...
Intermediate Talmud: Tractate Shabbat, Lesson 36
Seeking to better clarify the rhyme and reason of particular fuels banned by Jewish law, we encounter strange overlap of ritual proscription and the prevention of injury. Cracking the code to understand this Talmudic juxtaposition, a telling and compellin...
Spiritual secrets on the parsha
Kabbalah teachings on the weekly Torah portion distilled to help you make your good life better.
The Talmud on the Sukkah’s minimum height
In sourcing the Sukkah’s minimum Halachik height, we surprisingly reach for the biblical narratives detailing the heavenly ascendances of Moses and Elijah, as well as the anthropomorphic terminology used to describe G-d's past descent onto Mount Sinai, an...
The Talmud on inadequate walls of a sukkah
The practical application of ritualistic legal theory to establish the Sukkah’s outer parameters, as per the strictures of Halacha, is now brought to resolution. Building on previous elucidation of differing dimensions of related Halachik jurisprudence, w...
Verses to Stop the Satan Before Sounding the Shofar
Seeking to gratify G-d, King David pleads that his freewill offerings be reciprocated with Torah teachings. To appreciate Rashi's take, we frame his words with the classic commentaries, yet still come up short. Reaching across Scripture for kindred “give-...
Although surprising to some, we not only believe Satan exists – we even do things to confuse him! This is perhaps truest in the days leading up to, and on our Jewish New Year. With copious Torah-true sources establishing his existence, we go on to careful...
The Talmud on inadequate walls of a sukkah
In our previous lesson we learned about opposing schools of thought regarding the application of the halachik maxim “Gud Asik” (the theoretical extension of an incomplete partition into a fully walled area) thereby creating an “enclosure” that satisfies S...
Verses to Stop the Satan Before Sounding the Shofar
King David rejoiced in “G-d's word,” the meaning of which incorporates three possibilities: guarantee, wisdom or covenant. A range of commentary is employed to better understand what these ideals represent, and why this particular verse was selected to he...
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