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In the current climate of women fighting for equal rights, and a long history of male dominated hierarchies and patriarchal societies, what is the Torah’s view on the subject? There are numerous references in Torah that seem to suggest that women are not equal to men. How do we explain expressions like “noshim daaton kalos” (womens’ minds are weak), and that they are even considered like property?!
And how do we reconcile that with the Rebbe’s extraordinary empowerment of women today, insisting that they be learned and serve as equal partners with their husbands as shluchim and leaders of their communities?
Rabbi Jacobson will address this controversial and misunderstood topic in this week’s 106th episode of – what has now become a staple in so many people’s lives – MyLife: Chassidus Applied.
Other topics that will be discussed include:
· Are the 12-Steps and other healing programs compatible with Torah/Chassidus (continued)?
· Should I relay positive feedback and affirmations to a friend when I honestly don’t believe what I am saying?
· My family recently moved to a small town where there is no synagogue and no other Jewish families. How can I stay connected when there are no resources around to do so?
· How do we apply today the concept of berating our animal souls as explained in Tanya chapter 29?
Rabbi Jacobson will also review the following essays submitted in last year’s MyLife: Chassidus Applied essay contest: “When my Self is in Control” by Yaakov Wagner, “Transforming Fear into Goodness” by Moises Waisberg, and “The Power of our Thoughts” by Menucha Ezagui. These and other essays can be read online at meaningfullife.com/essays.
And finally, the Chassidus question of the week: Chassidus explains tzimtzum with the analogy of a teacher condensing an idea so that he can convey it to his student. So too, Hashem condensed His divine light so that it would be less intense and allow existence to manifest. It seems to me that tzimtzum condensation in our physical world does not mirror the spiritual tzimtzum: Squeezing or condensing an object in our physical world causes it to become denser, thicker, heavier, stronger, more intense. Whereas the divine tzimtzum condensed the light in order to make it less dense and intense. The physical world is a mirror of the spiritual world, so why does it seem to be the opposite in this case?
This hour-long dose of insights is meant to inform, inspire and empower us by applying the teachings of Chassidus to help us face practical and emotional challenges and difficulties in our personal lives and relationships. To have your question addressed, please submit it at meaningfullife.com/mylife.
The topics in this Sunday’s hour-long broadcast will include:
· Chassidus Applied to Pekudei and Adar II
· What Torah really thinks of women? [or Are women inferior?]
· Isn’t the statement “noshim daaton daloh” (a womens’ daas is weak) derogatory?
· 12 Steps – follow-up
· Hanochos follow-up
· Is “resignation” ever acceptable?
· How do we apply the concept of “berating” in Tanya chapter 29?
· Staying connected when not in Jewish community
· Chassidus Question: What is the meaning of tzimtzum?
· MyLife Essays: When my Self is in Control, Transforming Fear into Goodness, The Power of our Thoughts
MyLife: Chassidus Applied addresses questions that many people are afraid to ask and others are afraid to answer. When asked about the sensitive topics he has been addressing, Rabbi Simon Jacobson commented, “I understand that the stakes are high and great care has to be taken when speaking openly, but the silence and lack of clarity on matters plaguing the community can no longer go unaddressed. The stakes of not providing answers are even higher.”
The on-going series has provoked a significant reaction from the community, with thousands of people viewing each live broadcast and hundreds of questions pouring in week after week. At the root of every question and personal challenge tackled by the series is the overarching question: Does Judaism have the answers to my personal dilemmas?
In inimitable “Jacobson-fashion”, the broadcast answers people’s questions in simple, clear language while being heavily sourced. Each episode is jam-packed with eye-opening advice from the Rebbeim, gleaned from uncovering surprising gems in their letters, sichos and maamorim that address our personal issues with disarming relevance. Simultaneously, Rabbi Jacobson is able to crystallize a concept quickly, succinctly, and poignantly for any level of listener.
All episodes are immediately available for viewing in the MLC’s archive and can be downloaded as MP3s for listening on the go.
Questions may be submitted anonymously at meaningfullife.com/mylife