TTT: Shabbat Shirah 5772

January 31st, 2012 by admin | Filed under TTT.

Torah Thoughts for Today
Shabbat Shirah – B`Shalah 5772
Rabbi Mark Mallach
Temple Beth Ahm Yisrael, Springfield, NJ
February 4, 2012 – 11 Shevat 5772
Triennial: Exodus 14:15 – 16:10 (Etz Hayim p. 403)
Haftarah: Judges 4:4 – 5:31 (Etz Hayim, p. 424)
Prepared by Rabbi Joseph Prouser
“This is my God, and I will praise Him; My father’s God, and I will extol Him.” (Exodus 15:2 – New American Standard Bible translation)

Derash: Study
“An alternative rendering is ‘This is my God, and I will make Him a habitation’ (the Hebrew verb anvehu – ‘and I will praise Him’ is related to the noun naveh – ‘habitation’). This means: ‘I will make a habitation for Him within my own being; I will sanctify and purify myself so that my body may become a dwelling place for the Holy Presence.’” (Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch)
“For it was taught: ‘This is my God, and I will adorn God (anvehu)’: Adorn yourself before God in the mitzvot: make a beautiful sukkah in God’s honor, a beautiful lulav, a beautiful shofar, beautiful tzitzit, and a beautiful Torah scroll – and write it for God with fine ink, a fine reed, and a skilled penman, and wrap it with beautiful silks.” (Talmud Shabbat 133b)
“We want our children to look upon religion not as something to be inherited, but rather as something to be discovered.” (Rabbi Leonard I. Beerman)
“God is to be praised with the voice, and the heart should go therewith in holy exultation.” (Charles H. Spurgeon)
“It is in the process of being worshipped that God communicates His presence to men.” (C.S. Lewis)
Questions for Discussion:
At least three different translations of our verse (specifically of the word anvehu) are provided: to praise, to adorn, and to provide a habitation. Which do you find the most compelling interpretation? How might our synagogues (or our homes, or we) reflect all three translations simultaneously?
Arguably, we fulfill the message of this verse through public or private worship, but perhaps most explicitly through the experience of shared family worship. What formative religious experiences did you share with your parents? What potentially formative worship (in the broadest sense) experiences do you (or might you) provide for your children and their children?
The effort to beautify religious observance relies on individual tastes, personal creativity, and subjective judgment. How might we bring added beauty to our Jewish living? Physically, through the visual arts and ritual objects and accoutrements? Musically, through prayer and song? Through special attention to the quality of Sabbath and holiday meals? Through personal refinement in our interactions with others? Our conversations with them? Our treatment of them? Where else?
In the spirit of Rev. Spurgeon’s comment, what steps can we take to add “heart” (meaning, sincerity, intellectual honesty, strength of conviction) to the divine praises we recite, and to the values to which we pay lip service? Is this, too, a path to beauty?

Your thoughts as always are welcome…

A. Sunday, February 5, 2012:
1. 9 AM:
a. Religious School
b. Morning Minyan & World Wide Wrap: Come RAP with us with Tefillin, Talit, special breakfast & guest speaker – all sponsored by your Men’s Club – open to all, male & FEMALE, Teffilin help and practice pairs are available
2. 7:45 PM: evening minyan

A. Friday, February 10th, 8 PM: Guest Speaker Aaron Adler
B. Saturday, February 11th, 9:30 AM: Guest Speaker Aaron Adler
C. Sunday, February 12th, 9:30 AM: Women’s League Brunch
D. Tuesday, February 14th, 6:30 PM: Men’s Club meeting
E. February 20th, 8 PM: Guest Speaker Steve Taub
F. February 21st, 9:30 AM: Guest Speaker Steve Taub
G. Sunday, February 19th, 8 PM: TBAY Annual Comedy Night!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
I. Thursday, February 23rd, 7:45 PM: Torah on Tap
J. Friday, February 24th, 8 PM: Shabbat Shalem
K. Saturday, February 25th, 9:30 AM: Bar Mitzvah of Jason Rubin
L. Thursday, March 1st, 8 PM: Coffee & Clergy Corner – NJ Marriage Equality???? – Barnes & Noble, Rt. 22 W, Springfield
M. Friday, March 2nd, 6:30 PM: ShabbatTis4U service in honor of Kitah Bet & Hey – Shabbat dinner to follow – RSVP needed: – NO LATE SERVICE
N. Sunday, March 4th, 12 Noon – 2 PM: Purim Carnival
O. Wednesday, March 7th, 7 PM: Megillah Readings – Sanctuary & Chapel
P. Thursday, March 8th, 6:30 PM: morning minyan & Purim continues – Megillah Reading in the Chapel
Q. Saturday, March 10th, 9:30 AM: Bar Mitzvah of Matthew Nadel

1. Depart EWR: December 18, 2012
2. Return to EWR: January 1, 2013
3. The itinerary & application is available:
4. INFORMATION MEETING – note date change – SUNDAY, March 11TH – 12:30 PM – IN THE BOARD ROOM – come learn more from our tour company – all questions answered

For updated information go to:

You can also visit my website at