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Sitting In The Barber’s Chair

I was sitting in the waiting room of the service department of a car dealership and an “Oldies” station was playing, and I was surprised over how many of the songs were familiar. I couldn’t remember anyone playing these songs in our house, especially when...

The First Step Through The Door

It’s not surprising that the portion immediately following Shema - Hear/Listen, begins, “This shall be the reward when you carefully listen to these ordinances.” I wonder about the Hebrew name of the portion, Eikev. When I see that word, that translates as, “heel,” I immediately...

Chipping Away The Pieces

The great Renaissance artist Michelangelo was once asked how he created sculptures such as the Pietas or David. He explained that he simply imagined the statue already inside the block of rough marble, then chipped away the excess to reveal what had always been there. The...

The Mechanic & The Artist

My ten-year-old nephew was visiting from Argentina and gave a demonstration of his Tai Kwon Do forms. It was fantastic to watch him go through the complex movements, but something was missing from his performance; he was mechanistically perfect but there was no poetry in...

Eikev: In Name, Without Reality

The Name Without the Reality A student who does not study the appointed themes is not a real student. A mourner who feels no grief when condoling with the bereaved is not a real mourner. An old servant who neither tidies things away nor chatters about family affairs...