MTL

Rabbi Yitzchok Oratz

Rabbi Yitzchok Oratz is the Rabbi and Director of the Monmouth Torah Links community. Shortly after receiving his semicha (rabbinic ordination) from Bais Medrash Govoha, the famed Lakewood Yeshiva, Rabbi Oratz, along with his wife Toby and family, moved to Marlboro, NJ where they co-founded the MTL community in 2001. Aside for his "Devar on the Par" that he writes for MTL, his writings have also been published on Aish, Times of Israel, Seforim Blog, Hakira, and in various Rabbinic journals. Rabbi Oratz looks forward to continuing teaching Torah in away that is timely and timeless, and sharing meaningful Jewish experiences with the amazing MTL community.

Parshas Chukas – Cast Your Bread Upon the Water

“Cast your bread upon the waters, for after many days you will find it” (Koheles 11:1). In this week’s Torah portion, we find the Jewish people, in their fortieth year of wandering through the desert, arriving at an area called Kadesh and realizing that there is no water to be found. They are (understandably) not …

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Parshas Emor – Don’t Worry, Be Happy

What is the most difficult mitzvah in the Torah? Fasting on Yom Kippur? No Oreos for eight days on Passover? No texting for 25 hours on Shabbos? Surprisingly, some commentaries say that the most difficult is the one, found in this week’s Torah portion, commanding us to rejoice on the festivals. Because happiness is serious business, with …

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Parshas Vayikrah – Of Course Animal Sacrifice Seems Barbaric and Pagan, That’s Why We Pray for Its Return!

Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz recently penned an open “letter to Hashem (G-d)”, asking why we pray for a third Temple that will include animal sacrifice. I will be bold enough to assume that he has not yet received what the Kabbalists refer to as a piska min shimaya – a miraculous letter from Heaven – in response. But that’s …

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Parshas Vayikra – The Little Aleph That Could

“What should a person do to live? He should kill himself! And what should a person do to die? He should enliven himself!” This enigmatic Talmudic passage begs for interpretation. Life is death and death is life? Were the Rabbis giving suicide advice or encouraging a morbid or nihilistic outlook on life, G-d forbid? Of …

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Parshas Vayakhel-Pekuday- No Plain Jane

What makes YOU special? What are YOUR talents? What makes YOU unique? Do you dance? Sing? Read Morse Code? Play the ukulele? Ride a unicycle? Are you athletic? A tech genius? Gorgeous? Fabulously wealthy? The truth of the matter is that despite what we try to portray (or more accurately, fake) on our social media accounts, …

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Parshas Terumah – Holy Homes

It is a fundamental principle of the Jewish faith that G-d’s constant presence fills all of existence. Whether one prefers the terminology of the Kabbalists that there is “no space void of Him,” of the philosophers who say that G-d is the “First Cause” and “Ongoing Sustainer,” or of the popular children’s song that declares, “Hashem …

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