Thursday, September 27, 2012

Parsha Perspective

By Rabbi Yisroel Shusterman, Dean, Cheder Chabad of Monsey

According to a popular saying,  major Jewish experiences are  somehow connected to food. If  I may add, where there is food, there is song... Thus, every Jewish experience is full of song.

From the High Holiday cantorial pieces to the  zemirot sung at the Shabbat table, from the teary-eyed wedding chupah music to the energetic dancing music that follows, from the Mah Nishtanah at the Passover Seder to night-time lullabies, the Jewish year is indeed a musical one.

Why is song such a major player in the Jewish arena?

Rabbi Schneur Zalman, the first Chabad Rebbe and founder of Chabad Chassidus, once commented,  “Melody is the pen of the soul”. It expresses to ourselves and to others the deepest parts of our hearts and souls, that which cannot be expressed through the medium of finite syllables.

Song brings emotion and depth wherever it enters. It is a journey inward, to one's self, bringing our truest self to the forefront of our consciousness. It's the marriage between who we are and who we ought to be.
You don't have to be musically wired to appreciate the power of a melody. You don't have to hold the title of a singer in order to sing. All you need is a heart.

The greater part of this week’s  Torah reading of Ha'azinu (Devorim [Deuteronomy] 32: 1-52) consists of a 70-line "song" delivered by Moses to the people of Israel on the last day of his earthly life.

Why is Moses singing on the last day of his life? Why was the longest piece of poetry in the Torah chanted on one of the seemingly saddest days of Jewish history, the day that this greatest Jewish leader of all time passed on?

Moses wanted to leave us with the power of song. He was leaving his flock, and until the end of times there wouldn't be anyone like him to guide the nation. So he gave us a tool that would allow us to find G‑d within ourselves, to create leadership even in the absence of true leaders. He taught us how to maintain the flame of Judaism whether in the gas chambers – where Jews sang the Ani Ma'amin ("I believe!") on the way to their deaths – or sitting at the Shabbat table with family and friends.

On his last day of leadership, Moses gave us the means to persevere: with song.

How appropriate, as well, that this Parsha is always read just before the holidays of Succot and Simchat Torah, referred to in our prayers as Z’man Simchoseinu – the Season of our Joy! What better way is there to express our joy and happiness of being a Jew than through song !

And very soon, when Moshiach comes, we will merit to hear the greatest song of all, when we will sing and dance with G‑d Himself in the most magnificent dance of all time.

(Excerpts from Chabad.org - from  Rabbi Levi  Avtzon)

May you have a meaningful and uplifting Shabbos and a joyful Sukkos!

Yud Gimmel Tishrei Farbrengen

There will be a farbrengen this Shabbos, Parshas Haazinu, following davening at Tzemach Tzedek in honor of Yud Gimmel Tishrei, the yahrtzeit of the fourth Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Shmuel Schneersohn, known as the Maharash.

Rabbi Shmuel was born in the town of Lubavitch on the 2nd of Iyar of the year 5594 from creation (1834). His father was Rabbi Menachem Mendel of Lubavitch (1789-1866). 

Though the youngest of Rabbi Menachem Mendel's seven sons, Rabbi Shmuel was chosen to succeed his father as the leader of Chabad Chassidism in the movement's capitol, Lubavitch, at the latter's passing in 1866 (four of his brothers established branches of Chabad in other towns in White Russia and Ukraine).

In addition to authoring and delivering more than 1,000 maamarim of Chassidic teaching, Rabbi Shmuel was extensively involved in Jewish communal affairs and traveled throughout Europe in order to generate pressure on the Czarist regime to halt its instigation of pogroms against the Jews of Russia. 

Rabbi Shmuel passed away at the age of 48 on Tishrei 13, 5643 (1882).

Sukkos Schedule for Tzemach Tzedek & SBH Schedule for Community

The following is the Sukkos 5573 schedule for Tzemach Tzedek and the SBH schedule for the community:

Sunday, Erev Sukkos, 14 Tishrei  (September 30):
Shacharis 1: 8:00 AM
Shacharis 2: 9:00 AM
Licht Bentching and Mincha: 6:22 PM
Shiur and Maariv
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva hosted by Dovid Kaplan at the home of Ben Kaplan, 2 Tokay Lane.
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva at the home of R' Shalom Mordechai and Leah Rubashkin, 96 Southgate Drive. 
Monday, First Day of Sukkos, 15 Tishrei  (October 1):
Shacharis: 10:00 AM
Mincha: 6:15 PM
Licht Bentching: Not before 7:19 PM
Shiur and Maariv
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva at the home of Doniel Goldfarb, 20 Grosser Lane.
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva at the home of Yitzy Lipszyc, 21 Brockton Road.
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva at the home of Dovid Friedman, 33 Regina Road.
Tuesday, Second Day of Sukkos, 16 Tishrei (October 2):
Shacharis: 10:00 AM
Mincha: 6:15 PM
Maariv – Yom Tov Ends: 7:17 PM
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva at the home of Yossi Wolfson, 21 New County Road.
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva for Mesivta Bochurim with R' Mendel Polter at 9:30 PM at the Rosenbluh home, 39 Fessler Drive.
Wednesday, Chol Hamoed 1, 17 Tishrei  (October 3):
Shacharis 1: 7:00 AM
Shacharis 2: 8:00 AM
Shacharis 3: 9:00 AM
Shacharis 4: 10:00 AM
Shacharis 5: 10:30 AM    
Mincha: 6:15 PM
Kinus Torah
Maariv 1: 7:15 PM
Maariv 2: 8:30 PM
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva at Tzemach Tzedek - children's program at 7:00 PM followed by dancing at 8:00 PM.
Thursday, Chol Hamoed 2, 18 Tishrei  (October 4):
Shacharis 1: 7:00 AM
Shacharis 2: 8:00 AM
Shacharis 3: 9:00 AM
Shacharis 4: 10:00 AM
Shacharis 5: 10:30 AM    
Mincha: 6:15 PM
Maariv 1: 7:15 PM
Maariv 2: 8:30 PM
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva with R' Pinye Korf at K'hal Nusach Ari, 485 Viola Road.
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva at the home of Yonah Heidings, 21 Fawn Hill Drive.
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva for women at the home of Mrs. Bracha Meschaninov, 32 South Gate Drive.         
Friday, Chol Hamoed 3, 19 Tishrei  (October 5):
Shacharis 1: 7:00 AM
Shacharis 2: 8:00 AM
Shacharis 3: 9:00 AM
Shacharis 4: 10:00 AM
Shacharis 5: 10:30 AM    
Licht Benching & Mincha: 6:13 PM
Shiur and Maariv
  • Simchas Beis Hashoeiva at the home of Gavriel Siklos, 15 Green Hill Lane.
Shabbos Kodesh, Chol Hamoed 4, 20 Tishrei  (October 6):
Shacharis: 10:00 AM
Kinus Torah: 5:30 PM
Mincha: 6:15 PM
Kinus Torah continued:
Maariv - Shabbos Ends: 7:10 PM

Motzai Shabbos Kodesh, Hoshana Raba, 21 Tishrei (October 6/7):
Mishne Torah:  12:00 AM (Motzai Shabbos / Sunday morning)        
Tehillim: 1:00 AM (Motzai Shabbos / Sunday morning)

Sunday, Hoshana Raba, 21 Tishrei (October 7):    
Shacharis 1: 7:00 AM
Shacharis 2: 8:00 AM
Shacharis 3: 9:00 AM
Shacharis 4: 10:00 AM
Shacharis 5: 10:30 AM
Licht Bentching and Mincha: 6:10 PM
Maariv: 7:10 PM
Kiddush and Hakafos!

Monday, Shmini Azteres, 22 Tishrei (October 8):
Shacharis: 10:00 AM
Yizkor: Approximately 11:30 AM
Tefilas Geshem
Mincha: 6:15 PM
Licht Bentching: Not before 7:07 PM
Maariv: 7:10 PM
Kiddush and Hakafos!

Tuesday, Simchas Torah, 23 Tishrei (October 9):
Shacharis: 10:00 AM
Kiddush and Hakafos!
Musaf
Mincha: 6:15 PM
Maariv – Yom Tov Ends: 7:06 PM

Children's Programs:
  • Both the younger and older children's groups will take place on the first two days of Yom Tov, Shabbos Chol HaMoed and on Shmini Atzeres. 
  • Neither group will have a program on Simchas Torah.