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 Rabbi Lipskar's weekly d'var torah


This week we read about the climactic meeting of Yaakov and Eisav. Yaakov, fearing for his life and the life of his family, including children as his brother had threatened, prepares himself for that possible eventuality. Eisav is bent on murdering Yaakov’s entire family and plans to confront him with an army of 400 men warriors.

In preparing for what could be the battle of Titans, the Torah relates the following very interesting episode. Yaakov, after bringing his family, herds of sheep and possessions across the river, returns to salvage some small, seemingly insignificant vessels. There he is confronted by the spiritual representation, the guardian angel of Eisav. This metaphysical reality emanating from an extra-terrestrial source, camouflages in a physical human body, struggles and wrestles with Yaakov. When daybreak approaches and this non-corporal Eisav energy cannot overcome Yaakov who prevails, he displaces his hip joint, causing Yaakov to limp. Before this guardian angel of Eisav is able to disconnect from Yaakov, Yaakov forces him to acquiesce to having legally and rightfully received Isaac’s blessings and granted Yaakov the universal essential eternal name of the Jewish people, “Yisrael”.

Continuing his journey to Eisav, a remarkable transformation takes place that is nothing short of a miracle. The fundamental hate that existed from Eisav to Yaakov is temporarily suspended, and a true brotherly interaction takes place. Realizing that this was only temporary and did not mean that the hate was completely eradicated, Yaakov tells his brother that they must each go on their own journeys, until one day in the Messianic future they will meet.

The simplest interpretation of establishing the eternal name of Israel at this time is because the word contains phonetics that state that you have wrestled with the spiritual energy/guardian angel of Eisav and Man and have prevailed.

Why would this particular event be so central, effectuating the identity of the Jewish people forever? Also, why was this a necessary confrontation in preparation to successfully navigate the impending confrontation?
There are two aspects to Eisav’s strategy. One is savage brutality, and a desensitized lust for genocidal murder. Hamas and the Nazis etc. are the perfect representation of that. The second is a quiet, nonviolent, slow, devolution, and gradual attrition, otherwise known as assimilation.

 No oven, no smell, no gas chambers, no bleeding, just another form of ending a People.

 According to statistics from 1946 through 1990, more than 6 million Jews were lost to the Jewish people primarily via inter marriage and lifestyle assimilation.

As Yaakov sets forth on the millennial historical journey of the Jewish people, he must not only confront the savagery and brutality of Eisav but also his materialistically, overwhelming pleasure-seeking seduction.

It is interesting to note that our spiritual source and contact is the true secret weapon that allows us to protect ourselves, even against the mighty man-made, formidable weapons of destruction.

With all of life’s challenges, as Yaakov later tells Pharaoh, “My life was short and very difficult”, his invincible spirit continues to live, prevail and bring light to the world against all odds until today.

It is so timely that we read this portion where we achieve the name YISRAEL. Yisrael represents the unique Jewish G-dly soul which places the Jew as the head, leader, lodestar. This is included in the name YISRAEL which contains the word ROSH - HEAD. It is the Alter Rebbe founder of Chabad Chassidus who was liberated on this date 19th of Kislev from death row together with his philosophy, whose teachings give us the intellectual and emotional language to understand that special dimension and identity, describing the conduits to access our special G-dly energy and power.

Have a great Shabbos and wonderful week.

Sholom D. Lipskar


The Shul Pushka Campaign


It's the little things in life that count. G-d fills the world every moment with His divine energy. Tzedakah is one of the special and significant ways to create an all-encompassing Mitzvah, and in today's world, we need more Mitzvot than ever. It doesn't matter where or how much you give, just make Tzedakah part of your day.

The Shul provides beautiful Pushkas (charity boxes) to the community and to all those that would like to participate in the important Mitzvah of Tzedakah. To request a Shul Pushka please call The Shul Office at 305-868-1411 or fill out the form below.

Click here to request a Pushka


To Learn More About The Meaning of Tzedakah Click Here

Jewish Holidays


All Jewish holidays begin the evening before the date specified on most calendars. This is because a Jewish "day" begins and ends at sunset, rather than at midnight. If you read the story of creation in Genesis Ch. 1, you will notice that it says, "And there was evening, and there was morning, one day."

From this, we infer that a day begins with evening, that is, sunset. Holidays end at nightfall of the date specified on most calendars; that is, at the time when it becomes dark out, about an hour after sunset.

   All holidays begin at sundown on the day before the date specified here.

For more information Click here

Project 33154


Project 33154 is a community wide program to create a neighbor to neighbor Jewish experience. The initial case study started Chanuka 2002 where 10 young Yeshiva boys visited every home in Bay Harbor to identify which ones were Jewish and give them the necessary items (Menorah, Candles, Guides etc.) for the Holiday of Chanuka.

Over 250 Jewish Homes were identified together with a color coded map of Members, Non-Members and Unaffiliated Jews. Over the next Purim and Passover the same idea was used in the Surfside and Bal Harbour area and over 800 new Jewish homes were contacted and had a taste of The Shul.


Block Shluchim

Together with color coded map each neighborhood was split up into different areas that include a lay leader from The Shul.

Before each Yom Tov The Shul prepares a special food package which promotes holiday awareness.

Rosh Hashana, Yom Kippur, Succot, Chanukah, Purim, Pesach andShavout

Every newly identified Jewish household in the Bal Harbour, Bay Harbor Islands and Surfside areas has been contacted with thousands of Apples and Honey packages, Chanukah kits and Purim Mishloach Manos and food packages distributed this year.

Over 350 pounds of hand-made Shemurah Matzo (that’s about 2,450 pieces of matzah) has been distributed throughout 33154. If you are new on the 33154 area, please let us know so you can be included in this amazing and inspiring Jewish Program.

Send a letter to the Rebbe זי"ע


Throughout his lifetime, the Rebbe received hundreds of letters every day, from people of every conceivable background, occupation and faith. Today people continue to send letters to be placed at the Ohel for the Rebbe's guidance and intervention On High, in the age-old tradition of written prayer petitions at our holiest sites

Whether referring to one's own self or mentioning someone else's name in a letter, one should always include the name and mother's name (e.g. Isaac the son of Sarah) of both the one(s) who are in need of blessing and the signer. is preferable to use one's Jewish name. (Customarily gentiles use their father's name.) Letters can be written in any language. You can fax directly to the Ohel at: (718) 723-4444 Or you can use the form below to have the rabbis at Ohel Chabad Lubavitch bring your prayers to the Rebbe’s resting place.

The Rebbe

The Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson of righteous memory, the seventh leader in the Chabad-Lubavitch dynasty, is considered to have been the most phenomenal Jewish personality of modern times. To hundreds of thousands of followers and millions of sympathizers and admirers around the world, he was -- and still is, despite his passing -- "the Rebbe."

Whether referring to one's own self or mentioning someone else's name in a letter, one should always include the name and mother's name (e.g. Isaac the son of Sarah) of both the one(s) who are in need of blessing and the signer.

Click Here to Know More Click Here.

Wed, December 6 2023 23 Kislev 5784