Parshat Vayeitzei

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This one of the great visions of the Torah. Jacob, alone at night, fleeing from the wrath of Esau, lies down to rest, and sees not a nightmare of fear but an epiphany: He came to a certain place [vayifga bamakom] and stopped for the night because the sun had set. Taking one of the stones there, he put it under his head and lay down to sleep. He had a dream. He saw a ladder resting on the earth, with its top reaching heaven. G-d's angels were going up and down on it. There above it stood G-d . . . Jacob awoke from his sleep and said, "G-d is truly in this place, but I did not know it." He was afraid and said, "How awesome is this place! This is none other than the house of G-d; this is the gate of heaven." (28:11-17) On the basis of this

November 9, 2013 6 Kislev, 5774

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks on Parshat Vayeitzei
which can mean not only, "he came to, encountered, happened upon" but also "he prayed, entreated, pleaded" as in Jeremiah 7: 16, "Neither lift up cry nor prayer for them nor make intercession to Me [ve-al tifga bi]." The sages also understood the word bamakom, "the place" to mean "G-d" (the "place" of the universe). Thus Jacob completed the cycle of daily prayers. Abraham instituted shacharit, the morning prayer, Isaac minchah, the afternoon prayer, and Jacob arvit, the prayer of nighttimes. This is a striking idea. Though each of the weekday prayers is identical in wording, each bears the character of one of the patriarchs. Abraham represents morning. He is the initiator, the one who introduced a new religious consciousness to the world. With him a day begins. Isaac represents afternoon. There is nothing new about Isaac no major transition from darkness to light or light to darkness. Many of the incidents in Isaac's life recapitulate those of his father. Famine forces him, as it did Abraham, to go to the land of the Philistines. He re-digs his father's wells. Isaac's is the quiet heroism of continuity. He is a link in the chain of the covenant. He joins one generation to the next. He introduces nothing new into the life of faith, but his life has its own nobility. Isaac is steadfastness, loyalty, the determination to continue. Jacob represents night. He is the man of fear and flight, the man who wrestles with G-d, with others and with himself. Jacob is one who knows the darkness of this world. There is, however, a difficulty with the idea that Jacob introduced the
Great Neck Synagogue Yoetzet Halacha Dena Block will speak this Shabbat in the Beit Midrash after davening (about 11:30 a.m.). Her topic: "Marital Bliss: Where did it all Begin?” At Seudah Shlishit, she will talk about "The Real Housewives of Charan: What's REALLY happening in this week's Parsha?"


Candle Ligthing Friday Mincha Hashkama Parsha Shiur Youth Minyan Main Minyan Beit Midrash Gemorah Shiur Mincha Shabbat Ends Sunday Nov. 10 Mon., Thurs. Tues., Wed., Fri. Mincha

4:26 pm 4:30 pm 8:00 am 8:30 am 8:30 am 9:00 am 9:15 am 3:45 pm 4:20 pm 5:33 pm 7:30/8:30 am 6:35/7:45 am

6:45/7:45 am passage the sages said
that "Jacob instituted

4:20 pm the evening prayer."

Latest Times for Shema/Shmoneh Esrei Nov. 9 Nov 16
9:04/9:55 am 9:04/9:56 am

The inference is based on the word vayifga

Next Shabbat Vayishlach Candle Lighting Mincha 4:19 pm 4:20 pm

Kiddush is sponsored by Great Neck Synagogue

Seudah Shlishit is sponsored by Roya & Ben Shavolian in memory of her father Eliyahu ben Rebbe, z”l, by Melissa & Sam Toledano in memory of his father Avraham ben Yosef, z”l and by Helen & Harvey Ishofsky in honor of Sheva Brachot for their children Barrie & Avi Ishofsky.

26 Old Mill Road, Great Neck, NY 11023 (516) 487-6100 evening prayer. In a famous episode in the Talmud, Rabbi Joshua takes the view that, unlike shacharit or minchah, the evening prayer is not obligatory (though, as the commentators note, it has become obligatory through the acceptance of generations of Jews). Why, if it was instituted by Jacob, was it not held to carry the same obligation as the prayers of Abraham and Isaac? Tradition offers three answers. The first is that the view that arvit is non obligatory according to those who hold that our daily prayers are based, not on the patriarchs but on the sacrifices that were offered in the Temple. There was a morning and afternoon offering but no evening sacrifice. The two views differ precisely on this, that for those who trace prayer to sacrifice, the evening prayer is voluntary, whereas for those who base it on the patriarchs, it is obligatory. The second is that there is a law that those on a journey (and for three days thereafter) are exempt from prayer. In the days when journeys were hazardous - when travelers were in constant fear of attack by raiders - it was impossible to concentrate. Prayer requires concentration (kavanah). Therefore Jacob was exempt from prayer, and offered up his entreaty not as an obligation but as a voluntary act - and so it remained. The third is that there is a tradition that, as Jacob was travelling, "the sun set suddenly" - not at its normal time. Jacob had intended to say the afternoon prayer, but found, to his surprise, that night had fallen. Arvit did not become an obligation, since Jacob had not meant to say an evening prayer at all. There is, however, a more profound explanation. A different linguistic construction is used for each of the three occasions that the sages saw as the basis of prayer. Abraham "rose early in the morning to the place where he had stood before Gd" (19:27). Isaac "went out to meditate [lasuach] in the field towards evening" (24:63). Jacob "met, encountered, came across" G-d [vayifga bamakom]. These are different kinds of religious experience. Abraham initiated the quest for G-d. He was a creative religious personality - the father of all those who set out on a journey of the spirit to an unknown destination, armed only with the trust that those who seek, find. Abraham sought G-d before G-d sought him. Isaac's prayer is described as a sichah, literally, a conversation or dialogue. There are two parties to a dialogue - one who speaks and one who listens, and having listened, responds. Isaac represents the religious experience as conversation between the word of G-d and the word of mankind. Jacob's prayer is very different. He does not initiate it. His thoughts are elsewhere - on Esau from whom he is escaping, and on Laban to whom he is travelling. Into this

Shaabbat Announcements Parshat Vayeitzei 5774 troubled mind comes a vision of G-d and the angels and a stairway connecting earth and heaven. He has done nothing to prepare for it. It is unexpected. Jacob literally "encounters" G-d as we can sometimes encounter a familiar face among a crowd of strangers. This is a meeting brought about by G-d, not man. That is why Jacob's prayer could not be made the basis of a regular obligation. None of us knows when the presence of G-d will suddenly intrude into our lives. There is an element of the religious life that is beyond conscious control. It comes out of nowhere, when we are least expecting it. If Abraham represents our journey towards G-d, and Isaac our dialogue with G-d, Jacob signifies G-d's encounter with us - unplanned, unscheduled, unexpected; the vision, the voice, the call we can never know in advance but which leaves us transformed. As for Jacob so for us, it feels as if we are waking from a sleep and realizing as if for the first time that "G-d was in this place and I did not know it." The place has not changed, but we have. Such an experience can never be made the subject of an obligation. It is not something we do. It is something that happens to us. Vayfiga bamakom means that, thinking of other things, we find that we have walked into the presence of G-d. Such experiences take place, literally or metaphorically, at night. They happen when we are alone, afraid, vulnerable, close to despair. It is then that, when we least expect it, we can find our lives flooded by the radiance of the divine. Suddenly, with a certainty that is unmistakable, we know that we are not alone, that G-d is there and has been all along but that we were too preoccupied by our own concerns to notice Him. That is how Jacob found G-d - not by his own efforts, like Abraham; not through continuous dialogue, like Isaac; but in the midst of fear and isolation. Jacob, in flight, trips and falls - and finds he has fallen into the waiting arms of G-d. No one who has had this experience ever forgets it. "Now I know that You were with me all the time but I was looking elsewhere." That was Jacob's prayer. There are times when we speak and times when we are spoken to. Prayer is not always predictable, a matter of fixed times and daily obligation. It is also an openness, a vulnerability. G-d can take us by surprise, waking us from our sleep, catching us as we fall.

GNS November Chesed Collection will be collecting

Toys for Chai Lifeline and Coats for Oneg Shabbos
Toys - Please drop off new and unwrapped toys and games at the Lichter residence, 76 Berkshire Rd, any time from Sunday November 3rd to Wednesday November 20th. (There will be boxes inside the garage located on Marlot Ave) Coats - Please drop off coats in good condition to the home of Donna and Joey Hecht, 15 Hickory Drive, any time from Sunday November 3rd to Wednesday November 20th.

Great Neck Synagogue Shabbat Activities Program 26 Old Mill Road, Great Neck , NY 11023 Dale Polakoff, Rabbi Ian Lichter, Assistant Rabbi Dr. Ephraim Wolf ,z”l, Rabbi Emeritus Zeev Kron, Cantor Eleazer Schulman, z”l, Cantor Emeritus Rabbi Sholom Jensen, Youth Director Zehava & Dr. Michael Atlas, Youth Directors Mark Twersky, Executive Director Rabbi Avraham Bronstein, Program Director Dr. Scott Danoff, President Harold Domnitch, Chairman of the Board Dena Block, Yoetzet Halacha 516-320-9818

SHABBAT, NOVEMBER 9:   GNS Yoetzet Halacha   Dena Block    will speak at the end of   davening in the Beit Midrash   at approximately 11:30 a.m.   The entire congregation   is invited.   She will also be featured speaker   at Seudat Shlishit.  Kristallnacht Commemoration  Sunday, November 10 — 8:00pm  Join us as we remember 75 years later  1938‐2013  Screening of the  Documentary Film  More than Broken Glass:  Memories of Kristallnacht  Reflections and memories by our member  Henry Katz  Open to the community | No RSVP required 

Great Neck Synagogue Men’s Club    Enjoy a Complimentary Breakfast and listen to our  Dynamic Speaker 

Hon. Reverend Kenneth Meshoe,  
MP (South Africa)    Sunday, November 10, 2013, 10:00am    IS ISRAEL AN APARTHEID STATE?    “Having lived through Apartheid, ISRAEL cannot in  any way be compared to apartheid in South Africa.”  Shabbat, November 16  Seudah Shlishit Guest Speaker  Rabbi Menachem Schrader  Founding Director,  
Jewish Learning Initiative On Campus (JLIC)  Rabbi Menachem Schrader has lived in Israel with his family since  1981, serving as Rabbi of Moshav Carmel from 1991 to 1995, and of  Congregation Tiferet Avot in Efrat from 1998 to 2011.  He is the  Fouding Director of the Seif Jewish Learning Initiative on Campus  (JLIC) of the Orthodox Union, which places Orthodox Rabbinic cou‐ ples to serve as Torah educators within the Hillels on local college  campuses. Now on fifteen campuses in North America, the JLIC edu‐ cators strive to enhance the learning opportunities available to   students, and also to bolster an infrastructure for Orthodox life to  flourish.  

YOU CAN HAVE YOUR PIE   AND EAT IT TOO.....    Order homemade pareve PIES for Thanksgiving  and ALL the funds raised  will go to SHARSHERET to support  young Jewish women and their families                facing OVARIAN CANCER.    Check it out AT:‐for‐prevention/ greatneck    ORDER BY NOVEMBER 17th    Sponsored by:  GNS Sisterhood & Women’s Tefila  For more info,  contact Tovah Marmer @  516.314.7135 

HASHKAMA MINYAN Kiddush is sponsored by Hindi & Ben Lunzer in memory of his father Julius Peter Lunzer, z”l

Within Our Family
Mazal Tov to Rabbi Dale and Ellen Polakoff on the birth of a granddaughter, Gila Tova Yaffa born to their children Yosef and Shoshana Polakoff. Mazal Tov to Ellen and Rabbi Dale Polakoff on the birth of a granddaughter, born to their children Aliza and Lior Tor in Israel. Mazal Tov to Rachel and Ben Feintuch on the birth of their son. Mazal Tov to Judy & Abe Soleimani on the birth of a grandson, born to their children Elana & David Aminoff and also Mazal Tov on the birth of a grandson born to their children Dr. Kimmy & Ben Soleimani. Mazal Tov to Paula & Arnie Minsky and Bonnie & Elliot Martin on the birth of a grandson Dylan Cooper born to their children Jason & Valerie Fink. Mazal Tov also to sister Taylor Bree.

SUNDAY BREAKFAST Breakfast is sponsored by Alisa & Michael Hoenig in memory of his father, Dr. Edward Hoenig, z”l and by Melissa & Sam Toledano in memory of his father, Avraham ben Yosef, z”l.

MEN’S CLUB UPCOMING EVENTS SUN., NOV 10, 10:00am: We are thrilled that Reverend Kenneth Meshoe, an elected member of the South African parliament and a staunch supporter of Israel will be speaking at our breakfast that morning. SUN., NOV 17, 2:00PM : A trip to NYC, together with Dos Yiddish Vort , to the Yiddish Theater to see " Lies My Father Told Me ", a musical in English with Yiddish. Cost is $65 per person, which includes the bus, theater tickets and a light dinner. SUN., NOV., 24, 3PM : MEN'S COOKING CLASS. Just in time for Thanksgiving! Our "Master Chef", Cindy Hodkin, is once again teaching the Men how to cook. Please contact Cindy 516-482-7771 ( for the menu and further information. The cost will be $75 per person, and checks can be made payable to GNS Mens Club. KRISTALLNACHT This year will mark the 75th anniversary of Kristallnacht on November 9-10. A program in commemoration of this anniversary will involve the showing of a movie (Not Just Broken Glass) and a brief talk by Henry Katz, who lived through it, will take place Sunday evening, November 10, at 8 pm

In The Community
SAVE THE DATE Thur., Nov. 7, 7 PM at the GN Library, Main Branch, Community Room. Andrew G. Bostom, noted author and lecturer, will speak on "Islam and The Jews". Sponsored by the Jewish Political Education Foundation.

NSHA ANNUAL BOOK FAIR Come join the NSHA PTA at their annual Book Fair! The fair will take place at 16 Cherry Lane on Sunday November 17th from 11am-4pm and on Monday night from 6-8pm. On Sunday enjoy free arts & crafts for kids, story time and food for sale.

RABBI SCHRADER AT SEUDAH SHLISHIT Shabbat, November 16, Seudah Shlishit guest speaker will be Rabbi Menachem Schrader, Founding Director, Jewish Learning Initiative On Campus (JLIC) of the Orthodox Union, which places Orthodox Rabbinic couples to serve as Torah educators within the Hillels on local college campuses.

The family of Jack Lemonik wishes once again to express its profound apppreciation to Rabbi Polakoff, Rabbi Lichter, Cantor Kron the "Minyan Men", the Great Neck Synagogue staff and the entire community for their caring and compassionate support during the period of shiva for Jack's father, Irving Lemonik.

GNS ANNUAL DINNER Our 62nd Annual Dinner will take place on Saturday evening, Dec.14, 2013. Our Guests of Honor will be: Dina & Natan Hamerman Judith & Jerrald Weinstein and Boneh Habayit: Zachary Mittleman

FIRM DEADLINE FOR ADS Monday, December 2, 2013

GNS ANNUAL DINNER RAFFLES WANTED Please generously donate raffle prizes for the upcoming GNS Annual Dinner on Dec. 14th. Some ideas to consider : jewelry, electronics, sports or theatre tickets, restaurant or store gift certificates, experiences, tutoring, camp discounts, clothing, internships, art work, air miles for a trip to Israel or other destination, and hotel accommodations. Please contact Raffle Co-Chairs David and Diane Rein at with your donation. Thank you very much!


Saturday, 6 Kislev Asher Davoudpour for Aharon Dovid Davoudpour Elliot Diamond for Molly Diamond Shalm Evelyn Henis for Albert Noah Monday, 8 Kislev Michael Hoenig for Edward Hoenig Abraham Krieger for Nathan Krieger Magda Yehaskel for Mendel Wohl Tuesday, 9 Kislev Jerald Weinstein for Lillian Greenberg Wednesday, 10 Kislev Lloyd Bayme for Leib Bayme Pearl Ginsberg for Yetta Helfman Howard Lorber for Hannah Lorber Ronald Silverman for Gail Silverman Samuel Toledano for Avraham ben Yosef Jack Wachstock for David Wachstock Thursday 11 Kislev Susanne Hedaya for Harold Hedaya Trudy Jettelson for Sarah Levisch Gerald Nathel for Gertrude Deutscher Joseph Notovitz for Jack Notovitz Judith Soleimani for Bela Hajdu Joyce Swartz for Norma Gelfond Friday, 12 Kislev Madeline Belonsky for Dora Wine Richard Lillien for Bette Lillien Eliezer Noy for Mashala bat Soltana

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