Showing posts from March, 2020

The Gift of Coronavirus

The million dollar question is when things will get back to normal.  I hope never. Here's what I mean.  Last week, I posted in a Temecula facebook group the following:  "Can you share one positive thing the current situation has brought into your life?" The post currently has 521 comments and counting.  Don't get me wrong.  Coronavirus is terrible and I personally know people who have gotten it (and by extension, some who have passed away).  However, Hashem runs the world in a way that blessings and the opposite of blessings usually come in an inseparable way. There's an amazing book called " The Power of Habit " which I recommend you buy and read.  Commercial research has shown that people are more likely to change the brand of orange juice they drink after a birth, move, divorce etc. because when big change happens, habits are interrupted, and create room for new ones.  In our conversation, coronavirus has disrupted our routines and made the room fo

Is Coronavirus Real?

Is Coronavirus real? The short answer is yes.  How do I know that?  Because people are getting sick and some (a small percentage) are dying. We hear that the media is hyping things up.  People are going crazy and stocking up on water and toilet paper (unhelpful panic).  Colleagues of mine received strong emails from members, urging them to shut down services, Purim and everything, because coronavirus is real.  True, coronavirus is real, but is Purim, Torah reading and Judaism real too? Coronavirus and Judaism actually have a lot in common.  You can't see coronavirus.  It travels invisibly through tiny particles in the air.  If someone coughs in a room and walks away, the virus can still be in the air for 60 seconds, and infect someone who breathes it in.  Same thing with touching surfaces, since it travels incognito.  (This is why washing hands and being careful with hygiene is so important).  Even someone who is infected with the real virus can be symptom free for up to 14 days,

What Purim Means to Me

Earlier this week, I had a few conversations that made me realize something so sad:  many people think that Purim is a childish holiday!  The reason for this is likely because of costume parties as well as some Israeli Purim songs in the diminutive. The truth is that Purim is one of the most meaningful holidays in the Jewish calendar!  The Talmud teaches that all holidays will be dim when the Moshiach comes, all besides for Purim.  The Bible name for Yom Kippur is "Yom Hakippurim" which can be translated as "The day like Purim."  In other words, Purim is so powerful, that Yom Kippur is only "like Purim!"   If you get into the meat and potatoes of the holiday, it's even more anticlimactic.  Unlike Passover, when we left Egypt in style, with their country destroyed and drowned.  On Chanukah, we destroyed the Greek Army and one jug of oil lasted for 8 days. What is the story of Purim?  We were citizens of Persia, the king and his adviser designated a day