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Education, in it’s common meaning, begins when the child reaches a certain degree of awareness. Education of the natural world begins when a child enters the air of the world; and education of faith starts when the child is formed, “Sanctify yourselves, and you will be holy.”

Rav Avraham Yitchak HaKohen Kook


11 August in History

In 1840, Lord Palmerston the British Foreign Secretary wrote a letter to the ambassador in Constantinople that said, “There exists…among the Jews…a strong notion that the time is approaching when their nation is to return to Palestine…. I instruct you… to strongly recommend that the Turkish Government … encourage the Jews of Europe to return to Palestine.” Palmerston was not philo-Semite or a proto-Zionist. Rather he was an English statesmen looking to bring what he considered Western civilization to the Orient.

1 Elul in History

On the early morning of the 1st of Elul of the year 2448 from creation (1313 BCE) Moses ascended Mount Sinai, taking with him the stone tablets he had hewn by divine command, for God to re-inscribe the Ten Commandments. On the mountain, G-d taught Moses the “Thirteen Attributes of Mercy” (Exodus 33:18-34:8).

Moses remained on the mountain for 40 days, until the 10th of Tishrei (Yom Kippur), during which time He obtained God’s forgiveness and reconciliation with the people of Israel following their betrayal of the covenant between them with their worship of the Golden Calf. This was the third of Moses’ three 40-day periods on Mount Sinai in connection with the Giving of the Torah. Ever since, the month of Elul serves as the “month of Divine mercy and forgiveness.”

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November 2020