June 22, 2012 Korach

S.T.A.R. News & Events

Here are S.T.A.R.’s upcoming exciting events:

July 20-22, 2012

Join the STAR Teens on a trip to SAN DEGO California!!! 3 Days of Awesome fun with friends and the STAR Family!

July 24-26, 2012

Here is what you have been waiting for, the famous STAR Camping trip July 24-26!

This Shabbat

Shabbat Parashat: Korach

Candle Lighting: 7:50pm
Shabbat Ends: 8:54pm

Torah Message

The Object Of Desire

"And Korach…took" (16:1)

"And G-d said ‘Let Us make man in Our image.’ " (Bereshet 1:26)

Artists throughout the ages have taken this verse and stood it on its head: Man has ‘created’ G-d in his image. The G-d of Michelangelo, Donatello and others appears as no more than a venerable grandfather, complete with a long white beard and robes. Save for a few thunderbolts, their G-d looks like an Italian zeide in a costume.

What does the Torah mean when it says that G-d created man "in His image"?

When G-d created man, He gave him two powers: the power of giving and the power of taking. The power to give is the elevated quality that imitates G-d, for G-d is the ultimate Giver. There is nothing you can give Him in return since He already owns everything. Man is created specifically to imitate G-d by being a giver.

The desire to take is the antithesis of G-d’s purpose in creating man. Furthermore, taking is not about amassing a vast fortune, or a fleet of Porsches; it’s not a matter of "He who dies with the most toys wins." In truth, the desire to take has nothing to do with toys, trophies or physical objects at all.

The desire to take is the dark side of the power to give. It is the anti-world of giving, its negative doppelganger. The desire to take is never satisfied by the object of its desire. It’s amazing how quickly the sheen wears off a pristine new computer, or a new car, or a new wife (if that’s your view of marriage). For once the object becomes our possession it ceases to interest us, the desire is gone, and we focus on something else. Why?

The desire to take is never satisfied by the object of our desire because the desire to take is really the desire to enlarge ourselves, to make ourselves more, to take up more real estate in reality – to exist more.

And that desire is insatiable.

All physical desires have their limits – there’s just so much pâté de foie gras you can consume, but the desire to be more, the dark side of giving, is insatiable.

This week’s Torah reading starts with the following sentence, "And Korach (the son of Yitzhar, the son of Kohat, the son of Levi) together with Datan and Aviram (the sons of Eliav) and On ben Pelet (sons of Reuven), took." There is no object in this sentence. It just says that "Korach …took…" without revealing what or whom he took. What, then, is the object of the sentence?

What did Korach take?

Korach "took" the entire sad episode that followed: his rebellion and demise are the object of the first sentence of the weekly portion.

Korach was the quintessential taker. What he wanted was more, more and more.

Korach wanted to devour the world.

And thus it was apt that the earth opened its mouth and devoured him.

  • Sources: Based on Rabbi E. E. Dessler’s Kuntras HaChessed and Rabbi Shimshon Rafael Hirsch


Rabbi M. Weiss                                                  Rabbi Y. Sakhai

Community News

Em Habanim Congregation

Weekly Parashat Hashavua class with Rabbi Joshua Bittan on Wednesdays at 8:30pm for more info. visit www.emhabanim.com


Em Habanim Sephardic Congregation is pleased to make available its elegant venue for your celebration. Excellent location with easy access to freeways. For more info. visit emhabanim.com 


We congratulate Em Habanim on their Talmud Torah celebration. May you always remain a source of knowledge for generations to come. 

Get Well Soon

We urge the whole community and all the jews around the world to pray for two 16 year old boys that were in a tragic accident. May hashem grant them a full Refuah Shelema and may he grant their families patience and nachat, Amen.

Ariel Menachem Chayim ben Miryam & Daniel ben Sara

We wish a speedy recovery for all the Jews that may need it where ever they may be and especially for:

Em Habanim:

Max Barchichat From Sephardic Temple: Al Azus,Buena Angel,
Elaine Leon,Itzchak Rachmanony

From S.T.A.R.:

Mordechai Chaim Ben Chana, Chaim Ben Buena,
Meshulam Dov Ben Chana Sarah

 Bracha Sara Chaya Bat Ronit,
Donna Devora bat Sara 

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