Torah Learning with Ari

Noach – Of Doves and Olive Branches

By Ari Goldwag | November 4, 2016

What is the Torah’s teaching about the dove Noach sent to find dry ground? What is the significance of the olive branch in this context? Why is the Jewish Nation compared to a dove? Why is the tzaddik compared to a dove? Who was the woman who gave birth to 600,000 children? Why is that…

Read More

Breishis – Aligning Six and Seven

By Ari Goldwag | October 28, 2016

What is the concept of the embarrassment that Adam and Eve did not feel about their being unclothed before the sin? Why does the same word for embarrassment also mean to come late, as in the context of Moshe coming down from Mount Sinai? How does this relate to how the midrash breaks down the…

Read More

Vzos Habracha-Succos – Receiving Blessings

By Ari Goldwag | October 20, 2016

What is the concept of blessings? Why do the major blessings of the Torah, first given by the Patriarchs, and then by Moshe, have a certain level of continuity? How are the blessings connected to the praises embodied in the Psalms of David? What is the concept of the Succah and how does it relate…

Read More

Ha’azinu – Defying Nature

By Ari Goldwag | October 13, 2016

What does the verse mean when it says that nothing can be added to Hashem’s creation? Why does Hashem sometimes change the order of creation? Why is it sometimes done for a righteous individual? Why does one midrash seem to indicate that it is done in order to impart a sense of awe, while another…

Read More

Vayelech-Yom Kippur – Lengthening Lifespans

By Ari Goldwag | October 7, 2016

Is it possible to live longer than was decreed for a person at birth? How does one merit to live long, and how does one lose that merit? Why was the Angel of Death upset when he spoke to R’ Shimon ben Chalafta? How does one change the decree of Rosh Hashana and make it…

Read More

Nitsavim-Rosh Hashana – Breaking Barriers

By Ari Goldwag | September 27, 2016

In the verse speaking about the fact that the Torah and mitzvah of repentance are not distant from us, the Rabbenu Bachai says that there is a hint to the concept of circumcision – what does these concepts have to do with each other? How are we able to correct our behavior of the previous…

Read More

Ki Savo – Rain Revival

By Ari Goldwag | September 18, 2016

What is the connection between the blessings of rain and the revival of the dead? Why is Hashem the only One Who can ‘open’ the door for them? How is rain connected to the general concept of earning a livelihood? How is it connected to the concept of fish? How does this teaching relate to…

Read More

Ki Seitze – Honest Accounting

By Ari Goldwag | September 11, 2016

Why does the Torah focus on the sin of Miriam, one of the greatest prophetesses of all time, when warning us of the sin of Lashon Hara (gossip)? Why does the midrash specifically point out the individual sins of Eve, Sarah, Rachel, Leah and Miriam? Why does the Midrash teach us that in Moshe’s prayer…

Read More

Shoftim – Winds of Peace

By Ari Goldwag | September 6, 2016

Why do we call out for peace when we go out to war? Why does Hashem order things in the celestial and spiritual realms so that there will be peace if there is no jealousy or competition in those realms? How was Moshe able to contradict Hashem and look for peace or mercy when Hashem…

Read More

Re’eh – Hearing and Transcending

By Ari Goldwag | September 2, 2016

Why does the Torah speak about ‘seeing’ and ‘hearing’ in the context of our free will choices? What do we learn from the ‘listening’ that Adam did as opposed to Avraham? What is the depth of the concept of voice, sound and hearing? How does it relate to the mitzvah of blowing the shofar on…

Read More