Green Shabbat and sanctified Legos

I hate when people correct my grammar in the middle of a sentence.   It feels as if the arbitrary string of words are more important that the essential feeling and message that I’m trying to convey.   So it seems kind of strange that the Rabbis would comment on the divine grammar used in the Torah.

G-d commands; Make for me a sanctuary and I will dwell within them.  “It”, G-d’s third grade teacher in red high heels would remark in a slightly frustrated tone.  Then she’d continue,” … I will dwell within IT,” emphasizing the IT.

But G-d doesn’t make mistakes and for that matter, G-d was never subject to a third grade teacher – Thank G-d.  The awkward usage of the word THEM is clearly there to teach a lesson.

Make for me a [singular] sanctuary and I will dwell within [plural] them.   The Rabbis explain that each individual can make their own sanctuary and G-d with therefore dwell within many, many singular sanctuaries.

My son Sruli is six years old.  He told me at bedtime tonight that he was playing with his legos and having a really hard time putting the pieces in the right places.  He got so mad that he wanted to throw the entire boat he had built on the floor – but he didn’t.  He controlled his impulse.  He sanctified his play time.

We are constantly bombarded by choices and sometimes difficult situations.  We can choose to sanctify the everyday by making good decisions and in this way build our personal sanctuaries.  We have been promised that G-d will then dwell within them.


  • Please join us for Green Shabbat this week for lunch!  We will discuss the relevance of environmentalism to the Torah.  Delicious vegetarian menu and cups made out of corn.  Click here to RSVP.
  • Last call for Sinai Scholars.  Earn while you learn! 8 week discussion oriented class and a generous cash stipend for participants.  Apply online at
  • Sinai Scholars alum can apply for the exclusive retreat click here for details
  • Txt for soup!  If you’re feeling under the weather and would like a delicious bowl of chicken soup don’t hesitate to ask.  Just txt “hachoo” to 347.688.4770
  • Recovery Retreat – if you or someone you know is grappling with addiction and would benefit for a Shabbat retreat in Florida please let us know.  Some of the greatest authors and educators have come together to create a spectacular program and with the help of a generous donor students and alumni can receive a heavy subsidy to cover the cost.  For more information: and email
  • Create your own class – contact or and you can schedule your own class in an array of Jewish topics ranging for Hebrew language to Chassidic philosophy and classical texts.  No previous Jewish background necessary.

Shabbat Candle lighting this week will be at 5:18pm

Shabbat Shalom