Thinkingaboutme.org

9 years of Parasha articles. 

THE ART OF BEING CALM AND CHEERFUL

By Yosef Farhi | Nov 11, 2020

Click Chaye sara 2020 for download THE ART OF BEING CALM AND CHEERFUL Parashat Chaye Sarah I can’t believe I am writing this. But if just one reader, or one reader’s child thinks this helps me feel better, it’s well worth it.  Lately, I have not been feeling calm, present, cheerful. I decided to turn…

Read More

THE FEAR OF G-D BAROMETER

By Yosef Farhi | Nov 4, 2020

Click vayera 2020 for download THE FEAR OF G-D BAROMETER Parashat Vayera When the Torah introduces the test of Akeidat Yitzhak, it tells us וְהָ֣אֱלֹקים נִסָּ֖ה אֶת־אַבְרָהָ֑ם   And Elokim tested Avraham. Wait a second! Wasn’t this just as much a test for Yitzhak as it was for Avraham? After all, Yitzhak was 37 years old,…

Read More

FRAME IT!

By Yosef Farhi | Oct 28, 2020

click lech lecha 2020 for download FRAME IT! Parashat Lech Lecha I will never forget how, when my late great-grandfather Will reached his 100th birthday, he received a happy birthday letter from President Clinton. He framed it. The card wasn’t so important, but the person who gave the card was important. The president of the…

Read More

YOU ARE NOT EXCUSED

By Yosef Farhi | Oct 21, 2020

click noach 2020 for download YOU ARE NOT EXCUSED Parashat Noach After the flood, Noah first attempted to send the raven to verify that the land had dried up, but the raven refused to go on this mission. He had two claims. “Your Master hates me, and you hate me! Your master hates me, for…

Read More

THE ART OF ASSERTIVENESS

By Yosef Farhi | Oct 14, 2020

Click bereshit 2020 for download THE ART OF ASSERTIVENESS Parashat Bereshit After Adam ate from the Forbidden Fruit and transgressed G-d’s only command, G-d approached him in the most unusual way. Adam, ashamed of not heeding G-d’s command, embarrassed now that he realized that he was in the undress, was hiding. G-d asks Adam, with…

Read More

THE POWER OF BEING PRESENT

By Yosef Farhi | Oct 7, 2020

THE POWER OF BEING PRESENT According to Judaism, you do not need to do something, get something, or have something, to become happy. To be happy, according to Judaism, you need to undo things, like anger, jealousy, damaged pride or damaged relationships. To undo helplessness, hopelessness, doubt, all-or-nothing thinking, expectations or “should” thoughts. To stay…

Read More

THE POWER TO BE HAPPY

By Yosef Farhi | Sep 30, 2020

click sukkot 2020 c for download THE POWER TO BE HAPPY Rabbi Yosef Farhi Built into Judaism is a life-long workshop that prepares us to become superhuman beings. From nursery to nursing home, Judaism teaches us patience and trains us to delay self-gratification. It teaches you to wait 6 hours between meat and milk, to…

Read More

FATHERLY FORGIVENESS

By Yosef Farhi | Sep 24, 2020

click yom kippur 2020to download FATHERLY FORGIVENESS Yom Kippur The words of our prayers are precise. There is not one bit of redundancy or random usage of words. The Great Assembly revealed to us with their Torah knowledge and prophecy, the code we use to dial G-d, the prayers as we have them in our…

Read More

Rosh Hashana

By Yosef Farhi | Sep 16, 2020

click rosh hashana 2020 for download NEVER READY ENOUGH Rosh Hashana Rosh Hashana has three seemingly unrelated main themes. 1. It is a day of crowning G-d as King, negating, completely, that there is any “independent” force, such as “nature”. Malchuyot. 2.  It is a day of judgement, a day of renewal of the world.…

Read More

THE PROCRASTINATION PLUNGE

By Yosef Farhi | Sep 9, 2020

click nitzavim 2020 b for download THE PROCRASTINATION PLUNGE Nitzavim Vayelech A 60-year-old man is cleaning out his drawer. He notices a note from the shoemaker, dated 20 years back. He never got around to picking the shoes up, and he had completely forgotten about them. He decides to add some spice to life, to…

Read More

HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU

By Yosef Farhi | Sep 2, 2020

click ki tavo 2020 for download HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO YOU Parashat Ki Tavo A 50+ year old brother and sister asked me to help them with their Hebrew. That is what I do; helping people improve their prayer and learning, communicating with G-d, on every level possible. Their elderly father asked to speak to me.…

Read More

MEANINGFUL IMPACT

By Yosef Farhi | Aug 26, 2020

Click Ki Tetzte for print MEANINGFUL IMPACT Parashat Ki Tetze There are three judgements all souls need to go through by the Heavenly court. 1. Rosh Hashana. 2.When one dies. 3. And at the resurrection of the dead. (Ramban Shaar Hagmul) When King Shaul brought the soul of the prophet, Shmuel, down to earth to…

Read More

THE ART OF CONTEMPLATION

By Yosef Farhi | Jul 22, 2020

THE ART OF CONTEMPLATION Parashat Devarim G-d told Moshe,  הָב֣וּ לָ֠כֶם אֲנָשִׁ֨ים חֲכָמִ֧ים וּנְבֹנִ֛ים Appoint for yourselves judges that are wise and intelligent men. It is not enough to be wise and knowledgeable in Torah. One needs to also have intelligence, the ability to contemplate, discern and deduce. Moshe was commanded to choose, as judge,…

Read More

THE ART OF HEARTFELT PRAYER

By Yosef Farhi | Jul 16, 2020

THE ART OF HEARTFELT PRAYER Parashat Mattot Masei R’ Y. Eibshitz (1694- 1764 Prague) was once challenged by the king of his day. “In your books, it says that Mashiach will come as a poor person riding a donkey. גִּילִ֨י מְאֹ֜ד בַּת־צִיּ֗וֹן הָרִ֙יעִי֙ בַּ֣ת יְרוּשָׁלִַ֔ם הִנֵּ֤ה מַלְכֵּךְ֙ יָ֣בוֹא לָ֔ךְ צַדִּ֥יק וְנוֹשָׁ֖ע ה֑וּא עָנִי֙ וְרֹכֵ֣ב עַל־חֲמ֔וֹר…

Read More

THE ART OF EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION

By Yosef Farhi | Jul 9, 2020

THE ART OF EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION Parashat Pinhas Effective communication is definitely an art.  Non-effective communicators don’t ask themselves the seven questions before communicating.  Who is the right person to relay the message? What is the right thing to say? To whom? With whom? Where is the right place to say it? How is the right…

Read More

THE ART OF IMAGINATION

By Yosef Farhi | Jul 2, 2020

THE ART OF IMAGINATION Parashat Hukat The Jews spoke badly about G-d and Moshe: Why did they take us out of Egypt, to die in the desert? There is no bread, no water, and our soul is repulsed by the disgusting bread (the Mannah). G-d sent in the people poisonous snakes, and they bit the…

Read More

THE ART OF NARRATION

By Yosef Farhi | Jun 25, 2020

THE ART OF NARRATION Parashat Korah Your life decisions and everyday decisions are generally limited and confined to your four S’s. Social (the people you associate with and see, role models, community), State of mind (emotion, mood, physiology, etc.), Structure (what is most accessible, easy, simple, available), and Story ( the narrative of your life…

Read More

MAN WITH A MISSION

By Yosef Farhi | Jun 18, 2020

MAN WITH A MISSION Parashat Shlach You always have two choices. You can live your life as if you were created for a purpose, for a mission. There is rhyme and reason to why you were created, and why you are here now. Or, you can live your life as if it is a random…

Read More

THE KEYS TO HEAVEN’S GATES

By Yosef Farhi | Jun 11, 2020

THE KEYS TO HEAVEN’S GATES Parashat Bhaalotcha You can and should always talk to G-d. But prayer that works, prayer that opens the right doors to answer your prayers in Heaven, is prayer using the right words, the words that the great Jewish leaders established, understanding and meditating on what we are saying. We would…

Read More

THE ART OF FINANCIAL SERENITY

By Yosef Farhi | Jun 3, 2020

THE ART OF FINANCIAL SERENITY Parashat Naso Coronavirus has taught the world that real wealth is health, family, and safety. It has taught us that to be alive, to be able to breathe, is a blessing. Many perceive wealth as a blessing, but as the rich frequently confess, this is a mistake. Wealth and happiness…

Read More

MORE PRECIOUS THAN PEARLS

By Yosef Farhi | May 30, 2020

MORE PRECIOUS THAN PEARLS SHAVUOTH by Rabbi Yosef Farhi There is a custom to read Megillath Ruth on Shavuoth. What is the meaning of this custom? There are different reasons. Here is a thought I had. Our Rabbis teach that a Talmid Hacham who is a mamzer deserves more respect than a Kohen Gadol who is a…

Read More

THE ART OF DEPENDENCY

By Yosef Farhi | May 24, 2020

THE ART OF DEPENDENCY Parashat Bamidbar Each day, in the blessing before Shema, we pray to G-d that we be connected to Him and His Torah. We ask for this connection, in the merit of our ancestor’s Bitachon, their trust in G-d. בעבור אבותינו שבטחו בך … כי בשם קדשך הגדול הגבור והנורא בטחנו. In the…

Read More

THE ART OF MEANINGFULNESS

By Yosef Farhi | May 17, 2020

THE ART OF MEANINGFULNESS Parashat Behar Behukotay by Rabbi Yosef Farhi The wisest of men taught us that there is always a deeper meaning to things than the way we experience them on a superficial level. As King Solomon taught הַכֹּ֥ל הוֹלֵ֖ךְ אֶל־מָק֣וֹם אֶחָ֑ד הַכֹּל֙ הָיָ֣ה מִן־הֶֽעָפָ֔ר וְהַכֹּ֖ל שָׁ֥ב אֶל־הֶעָפָֽר: And the following passuk states מִ֣י יוֹדֵ֗עַ…

Read More

THE ART OF ALTRUISM

By Yosef Farhi | May 17, 2020

THE ART OF ALTRUISM Parashat Emor by Rabbi Yosef Farhi Rashi points out that right in the middle of the Torah’s detailed discussion of all the Jewish yearly Holidays and their respective laws and sacrifices, there is a law that seems to be unrelated to the subject. After speaking of the cutting of the barley…

Read More

THE CHOICE OF EXTRAORDINARINESS

By Yosef Farhi | May 17, 2020

THE CHOICE OF EXTRAORDINARINESS Parashat Aharei Mot/ Kedoshim by Rabbi Yosef Farhi There are five choices that we can make that will decide if and how much we are productive, especially when bouncing back during times of crisis and challenge. Choice no. 1: Act on the Important; Don’t react to the urgent. Choice no. 2:…

Read More

THE ART OF THIRD PERSON PERSPECTIVE

By Yosef Farhi | May 17, 2020

THE ART OF THIRD PERSON PERSPECTIVE Parashat Tazriah Metzorah by Rabbi Yosef Farhi In the ability to adapt to changes and bounce back from challenges, there are two lessons from this week’s Parashiot. One from Parashat Tazriah- the art of self-reflection. The other from Parashat Metzorah- the art of hope and reframing luck. The two…

Read More

THE ART OF ADAPTING TO CHANGE

By Yosef Farhi | May 17, 2020

THE ART OF ADAPTING TO CHANGE Parashat Shemini by Rabbi Yosef Farhi We all like Seder, order. But life is not Seder. It never was and never will be. When life has no Seder, we are forced to think hard and make an internal Seder. I.e., we are forced to answer the hardest questions in…

Read More

THE ART OF TRUSTING

By Yosef Farhi | Feb 6, 2020

click BESHALACH 2020 for download THE ART OF TRUSTING Parashat Beshalach I know that this sounds ridiculous, but did you ever return G-d a favor? He did, does, and will always do, so much good for you and your family. Or is it just impossible to do G-d a favor, for He does not lack anything…

Read More

THE ART OF EMOTIONAL RESILIENCE

By Yosef Farhi | Jan 30, 2020

click Bo 2020  for download THE ART OF EMOTIONAL RESILIENCE Parashat Bo Martin Seligman, the author of Learned Optimism and founder of modern-day Positive Psychology, writes that successful people are usually positive people. Positive people are masters at the three Ps. They believe that 1. Problems are not permanent. 2. Problems are not worse than they…

Read More

THE ART OF EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION

By Yosef Farhi | Jan 22, 2020

click vaera 2020 for download THE ART OF EFFECTIVE COMMUNICATION Parashat Vaera Effective communication is the key to success in so many life areas. How do we improve our communication skills? Where does one start? An excellent place to begin is with the Meshech Hochma in this week’s Parasha. Moshe claimed to G-d that there…

Read More

THE ART OF EMPATHY

By Yosef Farhi | Jan 16, 2020

click shemot 2020 for download THE ART OF EMPATHY Parashat Shemot וּמֹשֶׁ֗ה הָיָ֥ה רֹעֶ֛ה אֶת־צֹ֛אן יִתְר֥וֹ חֹתְנ֖וֹ כֹּהֵ֣ן מִדְיָ֑ן וַיִּנְהַ֤ג אֶת־הַצֹּאן֙ אַחַ֣ר הַמִּדְבָּ֔ר וַיָּבֹ֛א אֶל־הַ֥ר הָאֱלֹהִ֖ים חֹרֵֽבָה: And Moshe was shepherding his father in law Yitro’s flock, and he led the flock after the desert, and he came to the mountain of G-d in Horeb. (Shemot 3;1)…

Read More

HOW TO SOLVE EVERYONE’S PROBLEMS

By Yosef Farhi | Jan 8, 2020

Click vayechi 2020 for dowload HOW TO SOLVE EVERYONE’S PROBLEMS Parashat Vayechi Unfortunately, we can’t solve most of the problems of most of the people in our lives. Unfortunately, there is only a certain amount of charity we can give, only a certain amount of extra time and energy we have. Unfortunately, there is only…

Read More

THE ART OF BEING HONEST WITH YOURSELF

By Yosef Farhi | Dec 18, 2019

Click  for SUPER expanded vayeshev / Chanuka download THE ART OF BEING HONEST WITH YOURSELF Parashat Vayeshev Honesty is a huge part of self- improvement. To be honest with yourself means to examine your personal narrative. Subconsciously, people tell themselves stories about themselves. Some stories are true, and some are not. Our stories came from different places,…

Read More

THE ART OF RESILIENCE

By Yosef Farhi | Dec 11, 2019

Click Vayishlach for download THE ART OF RESILIENCE Parashat Vayishlach People that can keep their calm have what psychologists call resilience, or an ability to cope with problems and setbacks. A loss of a job, a breakup of a relationship, health issues, difficulties raising children… We can’t prevent such things from happening, but we can improve the…

Read More

HOW TO CONTROL YOUR EGO

By Yosef Farhi | Dec 4, 2019

Click Vayetze 2019 for download HOW TO CONTROL YOUR EGO Parashat Vayetze A Jew once said to his Rebbe, “I want happiness”. The Rebbe said, First remove “I”, that’s Ego. And then remove “Want”, that’s Desire. See, now all your left with is Happiness! Once, someone sent the Lubavitcher Rebbe a letter. “I have no…

Read More