Some Links

Jonathon Rosenblum on It’s the Effort That Counts

Children who are praised from an early age for their native intelligence often become obsessed with protecting their image as “smart.” They tend to give up easily when they are intellectually challenged or do not grasp things immediately. They also come to devalue effort and to view working hard as a contradiction to their image of as “smart kids.” Ultimately, too much praise for their native intelligence can even cause them to underestimate their own abilities. Because they downplay the importance of effort, they may conclude that their failure to understand anything immediately proves that the earlier praise was unjustified

Rabbi Berel Wein on the Pre-Pesach Drive is On.

Thinking about Pesach makes us also think about how special we truly are and what our purpose and responsibility in life and in this world should be. Jewish history is not only facts and dates, scholarship and academic disciplines. It is, more importantly, inspiration and faith, guidance and hope, vision and destiny. And for all practical purposes, Jewish history begins with Pesach, with the Exodus from Egypt. It is ironic that there are those in the Jewish world who, for whatever unfathomable reasons, have attempted to deny the entire narrative of the Exodus from Egypt.

All of Jewish history and the fact of Jewish survival itself over the ages put the lie to such attempts and theories. Judaism is based upon the simple notion that my grandfather was not a liar. All of the deniers of the Exodus are modern scholars. Well, we are witness to the fact that many truths, such as the Holocaust, can spawn a denial industry. But that will not change the truth. So, knowing the Jewish story is itself a great high point of our pre-Pesach preparations.

Rabbi Brody on Shuli Rand and Ushpizin:

Don’t think that Shuli is a lone wolf. When I met him last week in Jerusalem, he told me that more than twenty of his former screen and stage colleagues – Tel Aviv’s best known stars – have become Baalei Tshuva (Jews returning to their roots).