Category Archive: Uncategorized

Oct 05 2016

Spiritual Accounting and the Book of Life from an Accountant’s Perspective

My mom spent much of her career as a math teacher and as comptroller of a real estate company. My dad, alav hashalom, was an accountant.  I have two brothers, Michael and Philip- both accountants.  I, on the other hand?  The last math class that I completed was 10th grade geometry.  Bookkeeping is not my …

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Oct 05 2016

When the Book of Life is Closed

The new year is upon us. Our book of life lies open before us.  We like to think that we have the luxury of time and many, many blank pages to fill in with fun and exciting moments as well as moments of depth and meaning.  We pause, now, to remember those whose books are …

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Sep 29 2016

Selichot Reflection

So, I almost died this year. It happened in June, on vacation in Florida.  I borrowed my Aunt Faith’s bicycle, which had canvas toe cages affixed to the pedals.  Never having used these before, I came to a stop, couldn’t extricate my foot in time, and keeled over.  No big deal, as I was wearing …

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Aug 29 2016

Comfort

I must admit that until the ads for “My Pillow,”  I did not know that there was such a thing as “The National Sleep Foundation.”  Did you?  When I was a kid, Serta made mattresses and I really have no clue where pillows came from, and that was pretty much it.  Now, mattresses cost more …

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Jul 22 2016

Google, Unitasking, and Shabbat

For the last year or so, I have been working out at “Orange Theory” at Tatum and Shea, though there are Orange Theory franchises all over.  I like the 1-hour interval concept, and I love not having to think about my exercise routine.  Walk in, one hour later, walk out- done for the day.  Sometimes …

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Jul 10 2016

The Rabbi Has a Hole in Her Head

It is wonderful to be back after several weeks of vacation that included meeting Ron’s sister, a sunset cruise in Key West, a visit with my aunt and uncle, a big family wedding, and, a close brush with death. I didn’t realize immediately exactly how close, but in retrospect it is nothing short of miraculous …

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Apr 27 2016

Leo Saul Koppell- 3/30/33-4/24/2016

Simcha Lev ben Tzvi v’Channah   Leo Saul Koppell- 174. Born in Brooklyn, NY- 3/30/33, the eldest of Harold and Jessie’s two boys. When I was little, for the longest time I thought that his middle name was “Salt.” Leo survived his brother Eddie by almost 10 years, and he lived to his 2d Bar …

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Apr 08 2016

On Retiring From the Army

When I first raised my hand 37 years ago and swore to defend the Constitution of the United States I had no idea what I was doing. I grew up in Brooklyn, NY, near what was then the US Army Chaplain School at Fort Hamilton, NY. Knowing that I wanted to be a rabbi, I …

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Feb 29 2016

Ki Tissa- What Energy Are We Giving to Our Communities?

Would you like to save your soul? Not a question we Jews normally ask, yet, this week’s parsha, Ki Tissa, comes to teach us precisely that- how to save our souls. The answer can be summarized in one word- giving. As the portion opens, Moses is taking a census of the people. Our tradition is …

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Feb 15 2016

Mishpatim- On Parents and Children

Mishpatim, Exodus 21:1-24:18 Immediately after my daughter delivered a healthy and beautiful baby girl, I was privileged to enter the recovery room, where the newborn lay snuggled on her chest, covered by a thin sheet. As we pulled back the sheet to get a closer look, the baby startled. My daughter looked down at her …

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