Friday, July 6, 2012

Prayers for the 4th of July and why study the oral law of Judaism (called the Talmud)

The World is a Constant Gift

The bible  viewpoint is that the Almighty constantly creates the entire world and everything in it for each individual. This concept has the potential to give a person immense pleasure. Think about it for a moment. The Almighty -- Creator and Sustainer of the universe -- is constantly creating for you the sun, the moon, and all the other worldly phenomena. He is constantly bestowing upon you life, and every single second He supplies you with your needs.

Love Yehuda Lave

Prayers for the fourth of July by individuals from US History
> B"H

Validity of Oral Law:

I am getting interested in Judaism – reading the Bible, and trying to practice its many laws. But I am having a hard time accepting the Talmud and all its laws. Isn't it enough just to do what's written in the Bible?

The  Rabbi Replies:

Thank you for writing. This issue has bothered people throughout the ages, and in fact there have  been many break-away Jewish groups over thousands of years (Karites, Sadducees, and even the Christians) did so over this very point.

But it is a huge mistake.

Many of the mitzvahs which form the foundation of Jewish life are scarcely mentioned in the Written Torah – and with no explanation of their details. What's more, violating one of the precepts may even carry a penalty of death! Were it not for the Oral Torah, we would be left clueless as to how to observe these mitzvahs.

Let's look at one example: The mitzvah of Tefillin.

What are Tefillin! Are they Totafot? Are they Frontlets? Are they Phylacteries?

What color are they? What size? Shape? What about the straps? How many compartments? What parchments go inside? How should they be worn? Who should wear them? When?

What does the bible  say?

"And you shall tell your son on that day, saying, "It is because of that which God did for me when I left Egypt." And it shall be for you a sign on your hand, and a reminder between your eyes – so that God's Torah may be in your mouth. For with a strong hand God brought you out of Egypt..." (Exodus 13:8-9,16)

As Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan describes in his book, "Tefillin" (NCSY 1973):

"There is no description of Tefillin (in the Torah), nor any hints as to how they must be made. The Torah merely outlines their contents and tells us nothing more. It is most important to realize that God gave us the Torah in two parts. There is the Written Torah, which we keep in the ark. However, there is also the Unwritten or Oral Torah, consisting of the oral tradition handed down from Sinai. The Torah was not meant to be a mere book, lying on the shelf. It was meant to be part of the everyday life of the entire people. As such, it could only be transmitted by word of mouth. The Oral Torah was handed down from teacher to disciple for almost 1,500 years, until the harsh Roman persecutions finally threatened to extinguish it completely.

Finally, some 1,700 years ago, it was written down to form the Talmud. The Talmud itself cites Tefillin as a prime example of a case where the full description of the commandment is found only in the Oral Torah. If you think about it, you will realize that it was not necessary to write a description of Tefillin in the Torah. One need simply look at an older pair. Tefillin were worn by virtually every adult male throughout Jewish history, and they themselves provided as permanent a record as any book."

My advice is to find a rabbi who can study with you some sections of Talmud, to get you familiar with its value and see how it interfaces with the written Bible. This will unquestionably help clarify the Jewish methods of observance.

An Angel says, 'Never borrow from the future. If you worry about what may happen tomorrow and it doesn't happen, you have worried in vain.. Even if it does happen, you have to worry twice..'


1. Pray
2. Go to bed on time.
3. Get up on time so you can start the day un rushed.
4. Say No to projects that won't fit into your time schedule, or that will compromise your mental health.


5. Delegate tasks to capable others.
6. Simplify and unclutter your life.
7. Less is more. (Although one is often not enough, two are often too many.)
8. Allow extra time to do things and to get to places.


9. Pace yourself. Spread out big changes and difficult projects over time; don't lump the hard things all together.
10. Take one day at a time.
11. Separate worries from concerns . If a situation is a concern, find out what God would have you do and let go of the anxiety . If you can't do anything about a situation, forget it..
12. Live within your budget; don't use credit cards for ordinary purchases.


13. Have backups; an extra car key in your wallet, an extra house key buried in the garden, extra stamps, etc.
14. K.M.S. (Keep Mouth Shut). This single piece of advice can prevent an enormous amount of trouble. 
15. Do something for the Kid in You everyday.


16. Carry a Bible with you to read while waiting in line.
17. Get enough rest
18. Eat right.
19 Get organized so everything has its place.


20. Listen to a tape while driving that can help improve your quality of life.
21. Write down thoughts and inspirations.
22. Every day, find time to be alone.
23. Having problems? Talk to God on the spot. Try to nip small problems in the bud. Don't wait until it's time to go to bed to try and pray.
24. Make friends with Godly people.


25. Keep a folder of favorite scriptures on hand.
26. Remember that the shortest bridge between despair and hope is often a good 'Thank you Lord .'
27. Laugh.
28. Laugh some more!
29. Take your work seriously, but not yourself at all.
30. Develop a forgiving attitude (most people are doing the best they can).


31. Be kind to unkind people (they probably need it the most).
32. Sit on your ego
33 Talk less; listen more.
34. Slow down.
35.. Remind yourself that you are not the general manager of the universe..
36 Every night before bed, think of one thing you're grateful for that you've never been grateful for before.. GOD HAS A WAYOF TURNING THINGS AROUND FOR YOU.

'If God is for us, who can be against us?'


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