10 Facts About Rachel, the Wife of Jacob
Jacob didn’t give up. He agreed to work another seven years, and was given Rachel in marriage. The source of the Hebrew expression "youngest daughter Rachel" — that when making a deal, specify the conditions down to the last explicit detail — is based on the detailed condition that Jacob made in his agreement with Laban, to prevent the trickster from fooling him
Yehudah - Taking Responsibility
Man’s challenge is not simply to avoid mistakes, but to own up to those we inevitably make
Yosef and Deenah - Two Ways of Overcoming Evil
We learn from Yosef and Deenah that there are two approaches to fighting evil; destroying it and reforming it
Yosef - The Fourth Forefather
While Yosef was one of the twelve tribes, he also seems to play a more significant role than his brothers do in the development of the nation of Israel
From Shimon and Levi to Pinchas and Zimri
The two Tribes most closely associated with each other are Shimon and Levi. Many years later, their descendants meet again
Rachel and Leah - The Desire for Greatness
We learn from Rachel and Leah that the only way to achieve greatness is to aspire to it and to act upon these aspirations
10 Facts About the Sin of the Golden Calf
The Children of Israel, who thought that Moshe died, turned to Aaron and asked him to make another god for them
10 Facts About the Mighty Shimshon
Who was Shimshon and what was his secret?
Lavan - Honesty is the Best Policy
Many people believe, as Lavan did, that they can get ahead by cheating. Lavan’s story proves otherwise
Yaakov – Man of Truth
We learn from Yaakov Avinu, the man of truth; that sometimes honesty is not the best policy
Esav – No Room for Growth
Perhaps Esav’s most famous spiritual descendants were the Romans, who dominated most of the known world for centuries. They emulated Esav’s approach to the physical and spiritual in their outlook and actions
Yitzchak and Esav – Using and Abusing Power
How could a man as great as Yitzchak have believed Esav was virtuous and more fitting to receive the blessings than his righteous brother?
Rivkah Imeinu - Kindness with Wisdom
Optimal kindness requires wisdom. With an awareness of those around him, one can perceive their needs and provide for them without even being asked
Yitzchak Avinu - The Middle Stage
Why does the Torah record so few events in Yitzchak’s life?
The most striking aspect of Yitzchak’s actions is their similarity to those of his father. From this we derive the concept of following the traditions of our forefathers throughout the generations
Yishmael - The Wrong Type of Kindness
Yishmael represents the negative form of kindness. Why did he so abuse this trait that he received from Avraham Avinu?
Efron - Acting on Impulse
Efron offered Avraham a field as a gift, though suddenly changed his mind. How could Efron change so quickly from generosity to greed?
Eliezer – Escaping the Curse of Cham
Eliezer was destined to serve the nations of Shem and Yefes. How did Eliezer free himself from this curse?
Avimelech - Subjective Morality
Avimelech professed his and his nation’s innocence so indignantly because the Pelishtim were known to be highly 'moral', though there is a big difference between morality driven by fear of G-d and morality that a person defines himself
Lot’s Wife - Concerned or Simply Curious?
After looking back at the destruction of Sedom, Lot's wife turned into a pillar of salt. As always, a deeper analysis of the events leading to her death reveals important difficulties and teaches us important lessons.