Parashat Yitro

Parashat Yitro

Over the new year, I was given a wonderful gift: a copy of the new translation of the Hebrew Bible by Robert Alter. This new translation has received a lot of attention. As we read in the Jewish Telegraphic Agency’s article about it, “most full translations of the Bible are done by teams of […]

By Sandy Potashnick |
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Parashat Beshalach (In French)


Il y a quelques jours, le givre faisait son grand retour sur les fenêtres de nos maisons. Le ciel blanc s’effeuillait dans l’air et le cristal recouvrait la terre dans une atmosphère calme et ouatée … Je réchauffais mes doigts autour d’une grande tasse de thé clair sur laquelle je soufflais. La surface se […]

By Sandy Potashnick |
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Parashat Beshalach


Beyond The Veil
Since a few days, frost was back on our windows. The white sky was flaking in the air and the crystals covered the earth in a calming atmosphere … I warmed my fingers around a large cup of clear tea on which I was blowing. The surface was then wrinkled under the […]

By Sandy Potashnick |
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Parashat Bo

The Power of Words
In the book he wrote with his daughter Fania, Amos Oz (z”l) describes Judaism as ‘not a bloodline, but a text line’: ‘Jewish continuity has always hinged on uttered and written words, on an expanding maze of interpretations, debates, and disagreements and on a unique human rapport. In synagogue, at school and […]

By Rhona Lesner |
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Parashat Va’eira

First of all, a happy [common] new year to all of you, as this is my first Dvar in this new year. Our Parashah of this week is called “Va-eira”, which is often translated as “and I appeared. I can’t help myself by thinking of another Parashah with quite a similar name: “Va-yeira” (and […]

By Sandy Potashnick |
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Parashat Shemot

This week’s Parashah describes changes in the Israelites’ circumstances after the death of The Pharaoh who allowed them to settle in Egypt. Their situation continually worsens. Finally, Egyptian policies towards the Israelites are nothing short of genocidal. The decree that threatens the very existence of the Israelite people is described as follows:
 The king of […]

By Sandy Potashnick |
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Parashat Vayechi

Is it true that a child is blessed when it receives a blessing from its own parents? The answer seems or could seem obvious! Of course a child is blessed just as the children of Jacob in Vayechi are blessed by his words.  But is it also true that if a child receives a […]

By Sandy Potashnick |
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Parashat Vayigash

The loss of a trauma – Vayigash, 2018
To the three men who stand at the heart of this week’s parasha, a father and his two sons, I wish to add in my reading of it two other Jewish men, Sigmund Shlomo Freud and his grandson, Ernst. In ‘Beyond the Pleasure Principle’ (1920), Freud describes […]

By Sandy Potashnick |
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