Remembering each and every person who was lost, may their memory be a blessing.
Dedicated by Mina and Suzanne Goodman

Day 2

Defining Spirituality

Dedicated to my father, Joel C Breslauer (z”l), who passed away 25th Tishrei 5767 – As my Dad has always practiced, may Rav Twerski’s essay inspire us to be better human beings and help change our world. Keith M. Breslauer.

Spirituality is a frequently used term, but one that is rather difficult to describe. I would like to share a definition which I have used professionally for many years, although our journey should begin by stating what Jewish spirituality is not. It is not withdrawing from society, eating the bare minimum, and spending the entire day in meditation; the Torah does not advocate these. We are permitted to eat meat and drink wine judiciously; we are required to marry and have families. In short, we are to lead normal lives, but all the activities of normal living should be within the scope of spirituality. Let us perhaps define a more elementary term: humanity. You may say that this has been adequately described in science where we learned that the human being is Homo sapiens, a classification which is universally accepted. And, indeed, in Latin, this appella- tion sounds both sophisticated and innocent, but to understand it, we need to translate it. Homo refers to a genus, a family of animals of which man is a member, and he shares this genus with others, such as monkeys, gorillas and baboons. Man is distinct from the other members of his group by being a species of Homo which is sapiens, a term that essentially refers to intellect. Homo sapiens thus means “an ape with intellect.”


Rabbi Dr Abraham Twerski

Rabbi Dr Abraham Twerski is descended from distinguished rabbinic ancestry. He is a resident psychiatrist and an Associate Professor of Psychiatry. A prolific author, he has written more than 50 books on topics such as stress, self esteem, spirituality, drug and alcohol dependency. He appears regularly as a radio and television guest.

Click here for today’s parallel essay from Rabbi Noah Weinberg.

Fact of the Day

January 30, 1933

Adolf Hitler appointed German Chancellor.

Adolf Hitler – 20 April 1889 – 30 April 1945) was an Austrian-born German politician and the leader of the Nazi Party (GermanNationalsozialistische Deutsche Arbeiterpartei (NSDAP); National Socialist German Workers Party). He was chancellor of Germany from 1933 to 1945 and dictator of Nazi Germany (as Führer und Reichskanzler) from 1934 to 1945. Hitler was at the centre of Nazi Germany, World War II in Europe, and the Holocaust.

Today's Video

Rabbi Twerski ends his essay ‘We develop those traits that are the hallmark of a human being, the spiritual traits that elevate him above the level of Homo sapiens’. In this clip we can see a remarkable human achieving things one would think impossible.

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