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Parasha Insights

ARE YOU AN INVESTOR?

When a guy's printer type began to grow faint, he called a local repair shop where a friendly man informed him that the printer probably needed only to be cleaned. Because the store charged $50 for such cleanings, he told him he might be better off reading the printer's manual and trying the job himself.

Pleasantly surprised by his candor, he asked, "Does your boss know that you discourage business?"

"Actually, it's my boss's idea," the employee replied sheepishly. "We usually make more money on repairs if we let people try to fix things themselves first."

The Torah, in this week’s portion Mishpatim, strictly forbids the collection or payment of interest on a loan.

These laws against charging… Read More »

THE 5 LANGUAGES OF LOVE

A man and his wife were having some problems at home and were giving each other the silent treatment.

Suddenly, the man realized that the next day, he would need his wife to wake him at 5:00 AM for an early morning business flight.

Not wanting to be the first to break the silence (and LOSE), he wrote on a piece of paper,

'Please wake me at 5:00 AM.' He left it where he knew she would find it.

The next morning, the man woke up, only to discover it was 9:00 AM and he had missed his flight Furious, he was about to go and see why his wife hadn't wakened him when he noticed a piece of paper by the bed.

The paper said, 'It is 5:00 AM. Wake up.'

Random guy turns to a couple and says: You guys are a bit negative.

Couple: Yeah! But two… Read More »

ARE YOU ALONE?

You’ve heard the story about the Californian policeman who pulled a car over and told the driver that because he had been wearing his seatbelt, he had just won $5,000 dollars in the statewide safety competition.

"What are you going to do with the money?" asked the policeman.

"Well, I guess I'm going to get a driver's license," he answered.

"Oh, don't listen to him," yelled the woman in the passenger seat.

"He speaks nonsense when he's drunk."

This woke up the guy in the back seat, who took one look at the police officers and moaned, "I knew we wouldn't get far in a stolen car."

At that moment, there was a knock from the trunk and a voice said, in Spanish, "Por… Read More »

ARE YOU A THINKER OR A DOER?

At a bar mitzvah, most Jewish boys don tefilin. There is even an old story about it. As the catering staff is clearing up after Benjy’s bar mitzvah party, they notice that one of the glittering gold spoons is missing – and it’s the one from where Rabbi Bloom sat. So they tell the hosts, Timmy and Sarah, of the disappearance.

"Can you believe it, Sarah?" says Tim, "But how can we call our Rabbi a thief? We’ll just have to keep quiet about it."

2 years later, while out buying bagels one Sunday morning, Tim finds himself next to his Rabbi.

"Timmy, I’m glad we’ve met," says Rabbi Bloom, "what’s the problem, why have you been avoiding me for 2… Read More »

DO YOU BELIEVE IN YOURSELF?

If only God would give me some clear sign! Like making a large deposit in my name at a Swiss bank.

If you want to make God laugh, tell him your future plans.

I'm astounded by people who want to 'know' the universe when it's so hard to find your way around Chinatown.

Moses knew all along it would not be easy. That is why he tried to get out of it. Thus, when G-d summoned Moses to embark on a mission of setting his people free, he rejects the invite. The people, he says, will deem him a liar, a charlatan.

What does G-d do? He gives Moses three signs to perform for the people. First G-d tells Moses to take his staff, cast it down to the ground, and then it turns into a snake. Moses recoils but G-d says, no, grab hold of the tail of the… Read More »

DO YOU HAVE A LONG TERM VISION?

The local news station was interviewing a 90-year-old lady because she had just gotten married for the fourth time.

The interviewer asked her questions about her life, about what it felt like to be marrying again at 90, and then about her new husband's occupation. "He's a funeral director," she answered.

"Interesting," the newsman thought. He then asked her if she wouldn't mind telling him a little about her first three husbands and what they did for a living.

She paused for a few moments, needing time to reflect on all those years. After a short time, a smile came to her face and she answered proudly, explaining that she had first married a banker when she was in her 20's, then a circus ringmaster when in her 40's… Read More »

WHAT IS THE POWER OF FORGIVENESS?

A rabbi and his two friends, a priest and a minister played poker for small stakes, once a week. The only problem was that they lived in a very conservative blue-law town. The sheriff raided their game and took all three before the local judge.

After listening to the sheriff's story, the judge sternly inquired of the priest: "Were you gambling, Father?" The priest looked toward heaven, whispered, "Oh, Lord, forgive me!" and then said aloud: "No, your honor, I was not gambling." "Were you gambling, Reverend?" the judge asked the minister. The minister repeated the priest's actions and said, "No, your honor, I was not."

Turning to the third clergyman, the judge asked: "Were you… Read More »

HOW TO BE A PROUD JEW IN 2020?

Mr. Goldberg is a Jewish “yente” reporter who goes off to interview the director of a home for the mentally challenged.

How do you know if someone belongs in here?

Well, we fill up a bathtub with water and we give the person a bucket, a teacup, and a spoon and we ask them to empty the bathtub.

I see says the reporter, the smart ones will use a bucket.

No, says the director the smart ones will pull out the plug, so the water can run out. Now, do you want a south-facing or north-facing room?

In this week's portion Vayigash, After orchestrating his family’s descent to Egypt, Joseph brings his father before the Egyptian king. It is, we expect, a rare historic moment, an encounter between the most powerful man in the… Read More »

DO YOU TAKE A STAND?

In 1970 Chaim immigrated to Jerusalem. He applied for a phone in his apartment, but weeks went by without one. Exasperated, he visited the phone company headquarters in the main Post Office in Jerusalem and asked the clerk when his phone would finally be installed.

"Sir," responded to the clerk, "Israel has a major shortage of phone lines. There are Government Ministers, Army Generals, and Hospitals ahead of you who are also waiting for phones to become available."

“So you are telling me that I have no hope of getting a phone?" "Heaven forbid!” said the clerk. As a Jew, I am forbidden to tell you that there is no hope.

“There is always hope.” Excited, Chaim repeated, "There is… Read More »

DO YOU KNOW THE SONG OF ETERNITY?

 

Once upon a time, a scorpion was standing at the Gaza port, yearning to get out of Gaza and cross the sea. But alas, scorpions don’t swim. Suddenly, the scorpion saw a swan. It asked the swan if it can ride on its back and cross the sea.

The swan refused. “That would be suicidal,” said the swan. “You will give me one bite and I will die,” cried the swan. “Obviously you are dumb,” said the scorpion. “If I bite you, I will drown myself, because I do not swim. If you go down, I go down. So for my own selfish sake, I will never bite you.”

That logic made sense to the swine. It agreed. The swan took the scorpion on its back, they left the Gaza port, and off they went on their… Read More »

SHAKE IT OFF AND TAKE A STEP UP

A climber fell off a cliff, and as he tumbled down, he caught hold of a small branch.

"HELP! IS THERE ANYBODY UP THERE?" he shouted.

A majestic voice boomed through the gorge:

"I will help you, my son, but first you must have faith in me."

"Yes, yes, I trust you!" cried the man.

"Let go of the branch," boomed the voice.

There was a long pause, and the man shouted up again,

"IS THERE ANYONE ELSE UP THERE I COULD TALK TO?"

Until 31, J.K Rowling was a single mom on welfare. Currently, a British novelist best known as the author of Harry Potter – the best-selling book series in history, which eventually became the best-selling movie series in history.

When she was shopping it… Read More »

IS YOUR LIFE STABLE?

An older man had serious hearing problems for many years. He went to the doctor and the doctor was able to have him fitted for a set of hearing aids that allowed the man to hear 100%.

The old man went back in a month to the doctor and the doctor said, “Your hearing is perfect. Your family must be really pleased that you can hear again.”

The man replied, “Oh, I haven’t told my family yet. I just sit around and listen to their conversations. I’ve changed my Will six times!”

In this week’s portion Vayeitzei, the twelve tribes of Israel are born. After birth, each of the children is given a name by his mother, coupled with the meaning of the name.

I want to focus today on one very interesting name… Read More »

ARE YOU A SHEEP OR A GOAT?

Sidney Cohen was thinking about how good his wife had been to him, and how fortunate he was to have her.

He asked God, "Why did you make her so kind-hearted?"

The Lord responded, "So you could love her, my son." "Why did you make her so good looking?"

"So you could love her, my son."

"Why did you make her such a good cook?"

"So you could love her, my son."

Sidney thought about this. Then he said, "I don't mean to seem ungrateful or anything, but why did you make her so stupid?"

"So she could love you, my son."

It is one of those bizarre and absurd Talmudic tales, at least at first glance. The king and queen they were from the Hasmonaean… Read More »

HOW TO RESOLVE A CONFLICT OF INTEREST?

Mother asks little Johnny, as they wait for the bus, to tell the driver he is 4 years old when asked because he will ride for free. As they get into the bus the driver asks Johnny how old he was. "I am 4 years old."

"And when will you be six years old?" asks the driver. “When I get off the bus," answers Johnny.

The biblical debut of the favorite Jewish pastime, matchmaking, is recorded extensively in this week’s portion Chayei Sarah. Isaac is 40 years old, he needs to get married and so Abraham sends his faithful servant Eliezer on a search. Unlike modern-day matchmaking in which people are profiled based on vital issues like political alliances, music, and wine, Abraham gives… Read More »

THE FIRST RETREAT AND SPA

You know the story. On an Israeli airplane, the stewardess approached a passenger. “Are you ready for dinner, sir?”

“What are the choices?” the Jew asks.

“Yes or no,” she responds.

The story of Abraham via his unique Bed and Breakfast (or maybe Hilton or Ritz Carlton) spiritually transformed a generation. It is the bread and butter of Jewish education.

The Torah states in the portion of Vayeira: And Abraham planted an Eishel in Beer- Sheba.

The Midrash tells the famous story about how Abraham would feed his guests and then ask them to thank G-d for the meal. If a guest obeyed Abraham and expressed thanks to G-d for the lavish feast, he would eat, drink and leave. If he refused to thank… Read More »

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