In the course of a lifetime, we encounter any number of friends.
Some are friends by happenstance -- friends who happen to attend school with us, happen to work where we do or reside near us. When we graduate from school, change careers or relocate, most such friends slowly disappear from our lives -- and we from theirs.
Yes, there is something natural, human and probably inevitable about complaining. As the people who raised murmuring to a high art during the desert trek with Moses, Jews may have more precedent to complain than others. I once invented a game called "alphabetical kvetch," and I have rarely had a problem getting Jews to play along.
Finally, I'm grateful to the Almighty for having given me such a remarkable mother who, by example, taught her many offspring about the beauty of Judaism, how to lead meaningful lives and how important it is to do chesed for others. May her memory be a blessing.
Pope John Paul II died at 9:37 p.m. in Rome, which was 11:37 a.m. Saturday in Los Angeles -- in the middle of Shabbat -- at the same time that Rabbi David Wolpe talked to his Sinai Temple congregation about a pope who deserved the gratitude of the Jewish people.
Often, when sitting with my students, I find myself asking them, "What do you want?" and then "What do you need?" The answer to both these questions inevitably is not the same. I have learned this the hard way, like many other lessons. While I may have wanted something from someone, when I was honest with myself I realized it was not necessarily what I needed. Or perhaps not that I needed at that exact moment.
Three months ago, at age 19, my daughter made a decision that has changed her life forever. All of us make them, although often we have no idea at the time just how profoundly we will be changed.
You have three goals for your Sunday: wash your car, wash your clothes, wash yourself.