Beyond BT

Spiritual Growth for Jews

And For an Offering … I Will Sacrifice My Soul

Vayikra 5774-An installment in the series of adaptations From the Waters of the Shiloah: Plumbing the Depths of the Izhbitzer School For series introduction CLICK By Rabbi Dovid Schwartz-Mara D’Asra Cong Sfard of Midwood Speak to the children of Israel and say to them: When a man will bring near, from [among] you,( meekem) a […]

There Are no Lightweights or Heavyweights … Only Half-Weights

Pikudei-Shekalim 5774-An installment in the series of adaptations From the Waters of the Shiloah: Plumbing the Depths of the Izhbitzer School For series introduction CLICK By Rabbi Dovid Schwartz-Mara D’Asra Cong Sfard of Midwood Everyone who is to be counted in the census must give a half-shekel according to the holy standard where a shekel […]

Shabbos … the Great Unifying Principle

Vayakhel 5774-An installment in the series of adaptations From the Waters of the Shiloah: Plumbing the Depths of the Izhbitzer School For series introduction CLICK By Rabbi Dovid Schwartz-Mara D’Asra Cong Sfard of Midwood Moshe gathered the entire assemblage of the Bnei Yisrael , and said unto them: ‘These are the words which HaShem has […]

Thinking Inside THE Box(es)

Terumah 5774-An installment in the series of adaptations From the Waters of the Shiloah: Plumbing the Depths of the Izhbitzer School For series introduction CLICK By Rabbi Dovid Schwartz-Mara D’Asra Cong Sfard of Midwood HaShem spoke to Moshe saying: Speak to the children of Israel and have them lift an offering up to Me. Take […]

If you Really Want Unity, Stop Sleeping!

Yisro 5774-An installment in the series of adaptations From the Waters of the Shiloah: Plumbing the Depths of the Izhbitzer School For series introduction CLICK By Rabbi Dovid Schwartz-Mara D’Asra Cong Sfard of Midwood … and Israel camped there opposite the mountain -Shemos 19:2  וַיִחַן[the singular form, the pasuk does not say that the Israelites camped there. […]

Denying G-d and Denying Humanity

Beshalach 5774-An installment in the series of adaptations From the Waters of the Shiloah: Plumbing the Depths of the Izhbitzer School For series introduction CLICK By Rabbi Dovid Schwartz-Mara D’Asra Cong Sfard of Midwood  This weeks From the Waters of the Shiloah is dedicated in memory of Gitel Leah A.H. bas Menachem Mendel HY”D; Mrs. […]

When Your Teenager Asks: How Can You Daven That Fast?

Dear Beyond BT I would consider myself a very growth oriented BT and I’ve continued to progress over the years. Recently my employment situation has required me to think about work when I am at home. This is a reality which can not be changed at this current time. As a result my kavannah during […]

Blinded by the Light

Toldos 5774-An installment in the series From the Waters of the Shiloah: Plumbing the Depths of the Izhbitzer School For series introduction CLICK By Rabbi Dovid Schwartz-Mara D’Asra Cong Sfard of Midwood Yitzchak had grown old and his eyes grew dim, so that he could not see.  He summoned Esav his older son. -Bereshis 27:1 […]

It’s Summertime – Any Good BT Related Books to Recommend?

This was first published Jan 15, 2008 Any other books to recommends since this was post was last republished? Dear Moderators, I have so enjoyed and learned from your blog over the past few months. It seemed to appear to me at just the right time in my progress as a BT. Thanks for providing […]

What Ramifications Have You Found in People Having Different Spiritual Levels?

Michtav Mi’Eliyahu, Mesillas Yesharim and many other Torah seforim discuss different spiritual levels. A ramification of this idea is that different people will be effected by different degrees to various activities such as going to a busy beach, watching TV, or walking through parts of Manhattan. Some people will avoid these activities and some are […]

Some Life Questions for BTs (and FFBs)

1) Do you have a Rav with whom you can discuss life issues? 2) Does your spouse have someone to talk to? 3) For men – do you have a learning seder of some length every day? 4) Are you still focused on growing in your Yiddishkeit? 5) Are you integrated into your community? 6) […]

Major Problems Facing the Jewish People – 2008 and 2013

This post is from 11/18/2008. From the comments back then it looks like we’re facing many of the same problems. Which is not so surprising, since 5 years is not really a long time from a Jewish History point of view. What are the Major Problems Facing the Jewish People? Choose up to 3 and […]

The Pain of Being Attacked

It seems there’s a bigger cultural war going on between Torah Observant Americans and the Israeli Long Term Learning community, than there is between Non-Observant Israelis and the Israeli Long Term Learners. On the blogs and the comments we’ve been reading, the attacks both ways have been relentless and often vicious. As BTs we’re often […]

Are You Still A BT?

In common parlance, a BT is someone who became observant later in life. By that measurement, once a BT, always a BT. This usually means that we have to handle delicate situations with non-frum relatives, have lived a more secular life at some point, and we made a clear choice to become Torah Observant. Another […]

Have You Ever Read or Recommended “This is My G-d” By Herman Wouk?

Although dated February 21, 2012, we just recently stumbled upon this article, Modern Times which describes the publication of Herman Wouk’s wildly popular This Is My G-d in 1959. Rabbi Yitzchak Kirzner zt”l recommended this book for a first exposure to Judaism and after giving it to a friend, he exclaimed that this was the […]

How Do You Stop a Baal Teshuva Back Slide?

By Michael For a few months now I been having doubts, and I don’t know why, I think one of the main things that has really been bothering me is seeing so many orthodox sects, not get along with each other, like Satmar, Chabad, non-Chassidus. And so on. I always thought we were one family, […]

Who’s Cracked the Code on Frum Finances?

After reading “Financial Realities in the Frum World”, “Introducing Your Children to the Financial Realities of Frum Life” and “Changing the Language of the Tuition Debate” – there were many questions, some answers and nothing really conclusive other than there needs to be a change in “the system”. The whole tuition debate brings to my […]

Should Parents Make Potential Shidduch Lists for their Sons and Daughters?

It’s not uncommon for boys who are dating to have a list of girls who they are interested in. This is often because the boy’s parents get showered with resumes and a list is a good way of keeping control of the process. The list helps the boy and his parents organize the research of […]

What Do You Do About Shiurim at Your Seder?

It’s Pesach time, and it’s time to start measuring the wine, matzah and maror. Here is the shiurim links for the Star-K , Kof-K and OU. Here’s a link to a halachic discussion of the shiurim with the opinion of Rav Moshe Feinstein. What do you do at your seder? a) give out the more […]

What Do You Like About Frum Weddings?

Frum weddings are amazing. The energy, the joy, the dancing, the camaraderie, the segregation. What do you like about Frum Weddings?

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