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From the Desk of Rabbi Alter

Kol Colchester Parshat Shofitm August 15 2020

As Moses comes to the end of his life he urges the Jewish nation to make sure its court system is established with “highly qualified judges who also have impeccable character” (Deut. 16:18). One of the ideas behind this is that knowledge is not enough. Our interactions

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Kol Colchester Parchat Chukat

When Moses was told by God that he wouldn’t be able to lead the Jewish people into the land of Israel, his knee-jerk response was not focused on his own fate, but rather to make sure that the Jews would still have someone in his absence who

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Kol Colchester Parshat Chukat July 3 2020

The story of Moses striking the rock is only a short seven verses of the Torah. And yet it is one of the most well-known stories of all. (Try it yourself: Write a story in seven sentences that will be remembered by much of the world  three

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Kol Colchester, Parshat Korach June 26 2020

And Korach took” (Numbers 16:1). Korach was an astute, wealthy and charismatic person. He had so many blessings yet he lost it all and became the paradigm of human tragedy. Rashi teaches us that what led him to make such a major mistake in life and challenge

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Kol Colchester Parshat L’Cha June 19 2020

The Jewish nation has spent just over a year in the desert and is now poised to enter the Land of Jewish dreams. Overnight, everything changes. Ten out of the twelve scouts come back with a negative report after a 40 day mission into the Land: “We

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Kol Colchester Parshat Behaalotcha June 12 2021

In this parashah, Aaron is commanded to kindle the lights of the Menorah, but a most unusual expression is used in this connection. “Beha’alotcha” literally means “when you elevate,” rather than “l’hadlik,” the word used in connection to kindling the Shabbos and festival lights. There is a profound

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Kol Colchester, Parshat Naso

When i spent a great deal of time watching Star Trek, I noticed that Leonard Nimoy, portraying the half-Vulcan character, Mr. Spock, used the priestly blessing gesture as he delivered the Vulcan “salute” along with the greeting, “Live long and prosper.” The phrase transcends the centuries and

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Kol Colchester Parchat Acharei Mot Kdoshim

A LIFE LESSON Rising in the presence of any person is certainly a sign of honor and respect. So what is about a person who’s achieved “old age” that God tells the Jewish people that he should be so revered? Perhaps it’s because there’s nothing in the

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Kol Colchester Parshat Tazria Metora

The Talmud lists seven possible reasons as to why a person can find himself isolated and lonely in life. One of the key elements that runs through all seven is that the person happens to be stingy, not just in terms of his money, but in terms

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Kol Colchester Parshat Tzav April 3 2020

In the times of the Holy Temple, the chatat was an offering brought when a person inadvertently transgressed. There was a special prohibition against its meat being removed from the Temple. If, however, the High Priest brought a chatat for his own transgression, its meat was taken

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