הוּא (רבי עקיבא) הָיָה אוֹמֵר, חָבִיב אָדָם שֶׁנִּבְרָא בְצֶלֶם. חִבָּה יְתֵרָה נוֹדַעַת לוֹ שֶׁנִּבְרָא בְצֶלֶם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (בראשית ט), כִּי בְּצֶלֶם אֱלֹהִים עָשָׂה אֶת הָאָדָם. (אבות ג:יד) He used to say: Beloved is man, for he was created in G-d’s image; it is a sign of even a greater love that it was made known to... Read more »
The Torah begins with the story of Creation not just because our world begins there historically, but also because it starts there philosophically.
He used to say: Everything is given on collateral, and a net is spread over all the living. The store is open, the Storekeeper extends credit, the account-book lies open, the hand writes, and all who wish to borrow may come and borrow.
הוּא הָיָה אוֹמֵר, עֲשֵׂה רְצוֹנוֹ כִּרְצוֹנֶךָ, כְּדֵי שֶׁיַּעֲשֶׂה רְצוֹנְךָ כִּרְצוֹנוֹ. בַּטֵּל רְצוֹנְךָ מִפְּנֵי רְצוֹנוֹ, כְּדֵי שֶׁיְּבַטֵּל רְצוֹן אֲחֵרִים מִפְּנֵי רְצוֹנֶךָ. (אבות ב:ד) We previously learned about the importance of our intentions. The Mishnah in the beginning of the second perek of Avot relates to another aspect of our psyche — our will. He (Rabban Gamliel... Read more »
Rebbe says: … “Look at (scrutinize) three things, and you will not come to the hands of sin. Know what is above you: An eye which sees, an ear which hears, and all your actions are written in a book.” (Avot 2:1) רבי אומר… הִסְתַּכֵּל בִּשְׁלשָׁה דְבָרִים וְאִי אַתָּה בָא לִידֵי עֲבֵרָה, דַּע מַה לְּמַעְלָה... Read more »
In memory of Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, who deeply felt and beautifully sang the song of Torah, Jewish life, and Hashem’s world. Torah as Song One would have expected the Torah to conclude with a seminal law or philosophical idea. Instead, it ends with Shirat Ha’azinu — with song. Chazal understood this usage of the term... Read more »