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When to Give, What to Give, How to Give

A Selection from My Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Rabbi Chayim of Sanz,Darkai Chayim, p. 137
The merit of tzedakah (charity) is so great that I am happy to give to 100 beggars even if only one might actually be needy. Some people, however, act as if they are … More

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The Ethics of Speech

A Selection from my Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Tanakh, Leviticus 19:16
Do not go about as a talebearer among your countrymen… I am the Lord.”

Mishneh Torah, Hilchot Deiot, chapter 7:2
Who counts as a slanderer? One who carries matters from one [person] to another and says that … More

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Take Care of the Environment

A Selection from My Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Psalm 24:1
The Earth is the Lord’s and all that it holds, the world and its inhabitants.

Shemot Rabbah 10:1
Our Rabbis said, what is this “And the advantage of the land in all things” (Ecclesiastes 5:8)? Even things you … More

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A Vision of Peace

A Selection from My Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Hebrew Bible, Isaiah 2:1-4
The word that Isaiah son of Amoz prophesied concerning Judah and Jerusalem.
In the days to come,
The Mount of the Lord’s House
Shall stand firm above the mountains
And tower above the hills;
And all … More

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Hunger and Feeding

A Selection from My Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Leviticus 19:9-10
When you reap the harvest of your land, you shall not reap your field to its very border, neither shall you gather the gleanings after your harvest. And you shall not strip your vineyard bare, neither shall you … More

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Health and Illness

A Selection from My Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Yerushalmi, Kiddushin 4:12
The sages said in the name of Rav: It is forbidden to live in a city where there is no physician.

Talmud, Baba Kamah 46b
When a man has a pain, he should visit a physician.

Midrash More

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Enjoy Life

A Selection from My Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Eruvin 54a
Rav said to Rabbi Hamnuna: My son, if you have the means, treat yourself well. For in sheol there is no delight, and death is not to be postponed. Should you say, “I will make provisions for my … More

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Ethical Behavior

A Selection From My Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Torah, Exodus 22:20-26
You shall not wrong a stranger or oppress him, for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.
You shall not ill-treat any widow or orphan. If you do mistreat them, I will heed their outcry as … More

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Should Moral Individuals Ever Lie?

A Selection From My Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Avot D’Rabbi Nathan 12 3
When two people had a dispute, Aaron, the High Priest, went and sat near one of them and said to him: “My son, see what your friend is doing? He is beating his heart and … More

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What Children Owe Parents

A Selection from my Favorite Jewish Sources
Rabbi Mordechai Levin

Tanakh, Exodus 20:12
Honor your father and your mother.

Talmud, Kidushin 30b
Our sages taught: There are three partners in a man: the Holy One, his father, and his mother. When a man honors his father and his mother, the … More

Posted in Articles, Jewish Wisdom

Rabbi Levin is the rabbi of Congregation Beth Israel in Munster, IN. He received his rabbinic ordination from the Latin American Rabbinical Seminary, and is a member of the Rabbinical Assembly. In 2010, he was awarded an Honorary Doctorate of Divinity from the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York City for his years of dedicated service to the Conservative movement and the Jewish community...Full bio

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