Beyond BT

Spiritual Growth for Jews

Putting the Pieces Back Together

The journey of Jeff and Amy Brooke was born out of tragedy, but through it they were able to see the tremendous joy and beauty of Judaism. Jeff grew up in a Reform Jewish home in Norfolk, VA. For years the region had the heartrending status of having the highest intermarriage rate in the country, […]

Rabbi Hershel Welcher – Kashering Your Home for Pesach – mp3

Rabbi Hershel Welcher’s shiur on Kashering Your Home for Pesach can be downloaded here.

Teleconference: And You Shall Tell Your Son: Developing “REAL”ationships with Your Children

And You Shall Tell Your Son: Developing “REAL”ationships with Your Children Presented by Rabbi Avraham Mifsud, Director of NASO In this program you will learn ten chinuch principles of Rav Shlomo Wolbe, זצ’ל, that will help you to develop a clearer understanding of how to create strong, loving relationships with each one of your children. […]

Where is The Place for that Old Time Rock and Roll?

Someone recently confided that they’re having trouble placing they’re Rock and Roll memories. They mentioned that a Yeshivish oriented friend recently confided that he listens and gets inspired by Simon & Garfunkel. Many BTs in KGH, Passaic, Monsey, Five Towns and other Orthodox communities try to keep their children away from secular rock music. But […]

The Engaging Shabbos Table

by Rabbi Aryeh Goetz If the goal of your Shabbos table is to create a positive and unifying experience for participants of all ages and backgrounds, here are some simple techniques that encourage everyone’s participation. This format is wonderful for those who would like to invite guests who may be less familiar with Shabbos customs, […]

Stop Playing G-d

By Rabbi Ben Tzion Shafier Eighty percent of our emunah problems and ninety percent of our questions on HASHEM stem from one mistake — we play G-d. Playing G-d means I know exactly what I need. I need to marry that woman. I need that job. I need my child to get into that school. […]

Why Are BTs Willing to Blow Up Familial Relationships?

Based on some recent posts and comments on BT Martyrdom, it seems that many BTs get tremendous spiritual pleasure from blowing up familial relationships. What are the reasons for this willingness to cut oneself off from their families with these acts? a) They feel it’s comparable to giving up your life, which when appropriate is […]

The Pursuit of Truth

Great minds think alike. When important thinkers from very different perspectives reach the same conclusion we should pay attention to what they’re saying. Mussar comprises the Torah’s approach to personal and religious growth. Mussar teachings are spread throughout our religious literature and have received renewed emphasis during the last few hundred years of Jewish history.What […]

Rightsizing Our Children’s Education

Educating our children l’derech Hashem is a chiyuv that we have as adults, rabbonim, educators, parents and a community. This is certainly not a newsflash. So why do I raise the issue? Imagine that after camp ends in August, you take your child shopping for new Shabbos and school clothes. Money, of course, is usually […]

Purim – It’s Not a Party for the Non-Observant

When I first came to yeshiva in Israel it happened to be this time of year leading up to the holiday of Purim. There was an interest and an excitement amongst the students and Rabbis. Since I didn’t really know what it was all about, I was kind of keeping it at a distance from […]

What Are Guidelines For Appropriate Purim Costumes?

Why do people wear Purim costumes in fact and in theory? Is dressing up like a celebrity like Michael Jackson appropriate? How about like an evil person like Saddam Hussein? What other guidelines have you followed for appropriate Purim Costumes for children, teenagers and adults?

Where Do You Put Your Old Time Rock and Roll?

The death of Michael Jackson was a shocker to some of us, since we all grew up with his music. For me, I was very taken aback and felt compelled to follow some of it for awhile. I realized that integrating my cultural and societal priorities, then with now, was a continuing process, and that […]

Inside/ Outside

Boarding the plane for my 6:00 AM flight from LaGuardia, bleary-eyed from too little sleep, I forced myself to offer a moderately enthusiastic good morning to the smiling steward as I crossed over the jet way and through the hatch. The steward echoed my greeting, then added, “You look very sharp today.” I felt my […]

Rambam and Ramban on the Purpose of Korbonos

Rabbi Shaya Greenwald – Ohr Yerushalim Read the entire article here. In Parshas Vayikra we are taught about the Mitzvah of Korbanos (sacrifices). The Rambam, in the Sefer Moreh Nevuchim (3:46), suggests that the reason for the Mitzvah of Korbanos is that a person has a drive to worship Avodah Zarah. The nations in whose […]

Can and Should BTs become Virtually Indistinguishable?

From a recent email from a Kiruv organization I am of the belief that with proper guidance a Baal Teshuvah can [not must], by proceeding at a very moderate pace, achieve a very high level of integration into the frum community, ultimately becoming virtually indistinguishable from FFB’s even in ultra-Charedi settings. This level of integration […]

Hannah Has Two Mommies

The military has repealed its Don’t Ask, Don’t Tell policy toward gay soldiers. This is just one more manifestation of the increasing acceptance of homosexuals in modern life. Over the past fifty years, society’s perception of homosexuality has changed from seeing it as a mental illness, a perversion or a deviant criminal activity, to the […]

Dealing with Non-Frum Family Summary

A fellow BT has written a good summary about Dealing with Non-Frum Family based on some posts and comment threads on Beyond BT so we’re reposting it here with permission. There’s a lot of discussion about dealing with non-frum family in the Beyond BT site. It’s a hot topic for all baalei teshuva’s because we […]

Reb Meir Schuster Tribute Website

This week marks the launch of a major grass root initiative in honor of Rabbi Meir Schuster, a legendary Jerusalem figure who has been bringing Jews back to their heritage since 1969. Now in his sixties, Rabbi Schuster has been struck by Lewy Body Disease, a rare degenerative illness with symptoms similar to both Parkinson’s […]

How Have You Dealt With Conformity?

A good piece of advice for BTs is to try to conform to the standards of the community you live in. Do you agree with this advice? How have you implemented it in your life? In what ways are you not conforming and how has it effected you?

Aren’t We Supposed to Question?

We had a bunch of guests over for Shabbos lunch. This was on a summer afternoon, just a couple of years ago. Since my husband hadn’t returned yet from shul, everyone was passing the time in the living room, waiting. There was a relatively new guest, David, seated on the couch, who had only just […]

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