Blog Archive

Blog Archive

About Me

Rabbi Chaim Coffman
Rabbi Coffman has helped people from all across the spectrum to prepare themselves properly for Orthodox Conversion to Judaism. His students admire his vast knowledge and appreciate his warm, personal attention and endearing sense of humor.
View my complete profile


Welcome to Rabbi Chaim Coffman's Blog!

I would like to thank you for visiting my blog, Beyond Orthodox Conversion to Judaism.

The conversion process can be a lengthy and daunting one to say the least and I want you to know that I am here to help you through it.

I have been teaching newcomers to Judaism for over a decade and over the last few years I have seen that conversion candidates really lack the support and knowledge they need to navigate the conversion process and successfully integrate into the Orthodox Jewish community.

I created my mentorship program in order to help make this whole experience as smooth and as painless as possible! (Can't do much about the growing pains, though ;)

Feel free to get to know me a little through the posts on my blog and visit the mentorship and syllabus page if you are interested in possible joining us.

I sincerely wish you all the best in your search for truth and spiritual growth.

Looking forward to meeting you,
Chaim Coffman

My Rebbe, Rav Moshe Sternbuch

In case you were wondering why I have all of these articles written by Rav Moshe Sternbuch, he is my Rebbe, and one of the gedolei hador (greatest Rabbis of our generation).

Rav Sternbuch fully endorses me and supports my mentorship program.

He is the address for all of my halachic or hashkafic (practical and philosophical) questions that I or my students may have.

The articles are based on his weekly talks on the Torah portion that the Rav gives in Jerusalem in his kollel. As a member of the kollel I get first dibbs on the photocopies and I type them up for my blog so you can all benefit from the Rav's erudition and insight.
Tuesday, May 14, 2013

The Holiday of Shavuous: Putting the Giving of the Torah into Everyday Life

As the holiday of Shavuos comes, we celebrate it through learning Torah all night long. As each holiday has their specific mitzvos, i.e. Sukkos, we sit in a sukkah, shake the lulav...Chanukah, lighting the menorah, Passover eating matzah...the holiday of Shavuos is marked by learning Torah.

The essence of the holiday is showing our commitment to Torah and adherence to its laws. We show its importance by staying up all night learning it. The reason is brought down by the famous Ari Zal (Rav Isaach Luria) that we were sleeping when G-d wanted to give us the Torah and He had to make lightning and thunder to wake us up. Throughout the generations we must fix up this transgression and stay awake all night to make up for what happened.

In reality though, we should be dancing with the Torah like we do on Simchas Torah. Why don't we do this on Shavuous? Simchas Torah celebrates our yearly cycle of finishing the Torah and we celebrate the ability to be able to continue it again and start from the beginning. This shows that the Torah never ends and is limitless and always continuing.

Shavuous on the other hand is about our commitment to Torah. We show we want to keep it at all costs regardless of what it tells us to do. It is like we are in G-d's army. Whether we get more sleep or less, we still have to uphold the standards of the Torah to the best of our ability.Even if we are tired after staying up all night and we will ultimately fall asleep during parts of davening, nonetheless we are showing our commitment to Torah!

Ultimately it is our ability to try and connect to the Torah as much as possible. Even if we fail we try and show G-d how much we want to improve! it is the effort that we put that matters and the thought that we want to change and become better people.

The purpose of these days leading up to Shavuos is to recommit ourselves to the Torah and its ideals  and think about what we can do to improve our ways. This is why there are the 48 ways to acquire the Torah that the Mishna in Pirke Avos speaks about. We look at each one, each day and think a little about them and how they affect our lives.

May we merit to accept the Torah the way it should be and learn it to the best of our ability.

Have a happy and meaningful Shavuos!