Dear Aish Family,
This week was very busy at Aish HaTorah. It was the last week of the term in Yeshiva, as Passover break starts next week. We also had many missions come through including, Aish Detroit, Aish Mexico, Aish UK and the Forbes “Under 30 Summit”.
The highlight of my week was attending a celebration on the completion of Tractate Arachin by a dozen of our students in Rabbi Riber’s class. It is impossible to describe the joy felt by all those in attendance. Many of these young men had never even heard of the Talmud a year ago. Through hard work and determination they had mastered Aramaic and one of the more difficult tractates.
The day before, the students traveled to one of the largest Yeshivos in Israel, the Mir Yeshiva. They were tested on the entire tractate by Rabbi Gershon Meltzer, one of the most prestigious Rabbis of Jerusalem. They all passed with flying colors.
At the festive celebration I spoke to the students. I told them that the power of the Almighty’s Torah is that they can now sit down with Jews around the world and study with them in the common language of Torah. They could travel back two thousand years and now study with the great Rabbis of the Talmud.
Torah is the glue that keeps the Jewish people connected. G-d gave us his wisdom to pull us together in holiness. Aish’s holy mission is to give every Jew the chance to study the Almighty’s wisdom regardless of background and skills. It’s a job – literally – made in Heaven.
From the Great Wall to the Western Wall
One of the world’s most influential global mobile internet conferences (GMIC) was recently held in Tel Aviv. Many of the world leaders in the field attended. Among the invited guests and speakers were a dozen of China’s top CEOs, company presidents, founders and top level executives. Before meeting Prime Minister Netanyahu and former President Peres, among other public figures, the group asked their personal guide if he could arrange for them to meet with a Rabbi who could answer a burning question that they all had, ” Why are the Jews so smart?”. Yes, that was their request.
Two days later, this extremely high level group had their wish fulfilled. They found themselves, long after working hours, meeting with Rabbi Yitzchak Coopersmith in the Hytman Conference room at the Aish World Center opposite the Western Wall.
Rabbi Coopersmith had the luxury of having one of our students, Spencer Baron who worked in China, translate for him when needed. He was thereby able to address the group’s issues and questions.
Their guide told us the next day that the encounter for the group was “simply amazing”.