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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.
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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.
Thursday, February 11, 2016

Parshas Terumah: The Sanctification of the Physical

"And let the make me a sanctuary that I may dwell among them" (Exodus 25:9)

Here G-d commands the Jewish people to build Him a place where He can show His presence in this world. Although philosophically this is a difficult thing to understand because how does an Omnipresent being put Himself in a box so to speak? After all, if He represents the entire world, how exactly does He bring Himself down to this world?

The purpose of the mishkan (tabernacle) which later became the Temple was for the people to have a connection to G-d in this world. The way the Torah describes this is interesting because G-d tells the Jewish people that for Him to come down to this world they have to take physical things, put them together for that to happen! G-d is in essence telling us that the way to the spiritual is through the physical.

The Torah does not look at the world as an evil place like the Christians do but realizes that man has certain needs, comes from the physical and can use it for spiritual purposes. When a person makes a blessing for instance on an apple, although a physical act, it allows G-d's heavenly influence to bless all fruit trees! Is this really true? After all, I just ate an apple, there are spiritual ramifications going on here?

Many think that what they do here in this world doesn't matter. This is as if to say there is no judge and there is no judgement! Not only that we realize that what we do matters and does have ramifications even if people don't think so! Even an event that happened many years can have tremendous consequences even years later!

The Torah is not G-d forbid a hypothetical work that has no relevance to us. It is about action, not thoughts. We have to do things. Either we are going up or down on the spiritual ladder; staying the same and being happy where we are are akin to death! Mediocrity is something that we don't strive for and are not interested in.

As we read these parshiot, we can't get lost in the details of the construction of the mishkan but have to realize we have an unbelievable job in this world. Our purpose is to even take the physical and make it holy. This is the power that G-d entrusted us with. We need to learn to speak properly, act properly...which effect our spiritual well being as well.

Even if we may think that G-d is so lofty that He doesn't care about our actions down here, they are tremendously relevant. They make us into the people that we are. This is why G-d will judge us each year where we are holding now and not what our potential is in the future, This is tremendous solace for us because it gives us the ability to change and grow and not get condemned for what we will do in the future.

May we constantly strive to take even the most mundane things and use them for spiritual purposes!

Shabbat Shalom