Spiritual Growth

Abraham & Independence - I notice that the first “command” given to the first Jew, Abraham, is to "Go for yourself from your land, from your relatives, and from your father's house to the land that I will show you." (Genesis 12:1) Is this… More »
Are Religious People Happy? - I grew up Orthodox but fell out of practice in my early 20s. In the few years since then I have dabbled with several other religious beliefs or just secular living, and I never really felt fulfilled. At this point,… More »
As Great as Moses - All my friends seem to be talented and smart. I'm just kind of average. I try really hard, but can't seem to ever reach a level of excellence. It's getting me worried about my future. What should I do? More »
Attaining Spirituality - I want to become a more spiritual person. I feel my life is stuck in a swamp of fashion, technology, and consumption. How do I break out of this and get in touch with my spiritual side? More »
Awesome Moon - I thought you would enjoy knowing that a full moon will occur on the winter solstice, in conjunction with a lunar perigee – the point in the moon's orbit that is closest to Earth. The moon will appear about 14… More »
Being a Good Jew - I am 50 years old and am on a path back to the Judaism that I was raised with, but unfortunately abandoned for so many years. I am asking lots of people this question, and now I'll ask you: How… More »
Burning of Woodstock - I always imagined the icon of "Woodstock" to represent peace, love and goodwill. But that image exploded when I watched the 1999 edition of the rally turn into a spontaneous riot. Large fires were set, trailers full of merchandise and… More »
Connecting with God - I cannot feel God in my heart. Sometimes the atheists seem logical and that scares me. Please help me connect with the Almighty. More »
Cosmetic Surgery - What does the Torah say about nose jobs – both from a legal and philosophic point of view? Are they permitted, or is this considered tampering with Creation? More »
Dealing with Frustration - Things often don't go my way and I get angry. Then I make bad decisions and wind up saying things I regret. What is a good way to deal with frustration? More »
Desiring Sin - I have a general question about spiritual growth. We all have desires for forbidden acts. Should our attitude be that we’d love to do them but we don’t because God forbade it? Or are we supposed to somehow grow out… More »
Foul Language - I am always bothered when I hear Jews using foul speech, or when they use such pejoratives as “nigger.” It led me to wonder: Does the Torah actually forbid such behavior? I can’t really think of what verse or heading… More »
Fulfill Potential - My grandfather made a lot of money and left me a good chunk of it. I'm a pretty talented guy, but I enjoy mountain biking and hanging out with my friends. My parents are hassling me to "go to college… More »
Go For It - I'm turning 40 this year. I feel like life is passing me by. When opportunities present themselves, I hesitate, and then it's too late. I don't want to be looking back 10 years from now and feeling regret. What do… More »
Goals & Destiny - I've been reaching a lot of articles on Aish.com and keep coming across concepts like goals, expectations, potential, effort and destiny. How do these ideas relate to each other, and how does each pertain to a Jew's life? I'm confused! More »
Is There an Obligation to be Happy? - Please explain how God can command us to be happy? Let’s say a person is not happy? What should he do about it? He can’t just turn it on! More »
Jacob, Esau & the Purpose of Life - I seem to have two voices pulling at me: One that says, “Be responsible; think long-term,” and the other that says, “Live it up now.” Each voice seems to have a good argument. What do you say? More »
Jewish Claim to the Land - I have heard a lot of anti-Israel sentiment from my friends who support the Palestinians. A good client of mine questions the validity of Israel’s existence, saying: “How do you justify inhabiting an already populated land through force? How can… More »
Judaism: All Or Nothing? - I have been testing the waters, trying to get involved in Judaism. But I feel like I'm swimming in a vast ocean of unfamiliar concepts: Hebrew texts, legal nuances, culture, etc. I'm not sure any of this is for me! More »
Learn Torah Now! - I am 66 years old and have recently gotten more interested in my Jewish heritage. I see many young people in my neighborhood (Manhattan) getting together for Torah study sessions and I envy them. They are young and can absorb… More »
Life in Perspective - I'm in high school and am starting to think about life. Everything seems so superficial - relationships, the media, fashions. I don't want my life built around that. What advice can you offer? More »
Life on Track - I am turning 40 in a few months and I am terribly frustrated seeing my life go by, without really fulfilling my potential. I cannot imagine being 20 years down the road and these same feelings of emptiness and regret,… More »
Overcoming Depression - I have a good job at a bank. I have good friends, a loving family, and enough money. But I'm depressed! I lost substantial client funds in the currency markets over the last six months. I was always good at… More »
Overcoming Hatred - I've been thinking a lot about all the strife in this world - between individuals, between countries, between races. I understand that hatred occurs when there is hostility between two people, and neither have a desire to see the positive… More »
Overcoming Jealousy - Society seems so driven by materialism. Who can get ahead of who! I try not to get caught up in this, but I frequently find myself getting jealous of what others have. How do I stop being jealous of them? More »
Overcoming the Temptation to Steal - I work in a small clothing store. Recently, I’ve become very tempted to steal a little of the merchandise (small items, ones without anti-theft tags). I know I could get away with it because there is no security camera and… More »
Pleasure - I could scarcely believe my eyes when I read your claim that Judaism teaches that the purpose of life is to seek pleasure. How can you, as a rabbi, be serious? Judaism teaches no such thing. In the deepest sense,… More »
Relax! - I've always been told that every moment I have is precious. There's also the concept of being able to relax. So am I able to relax once in awhile? Or should I constantly think "achievement" all the time?! Sometimes I… More »
Religion for Children of Divorced Parents - I am struggling to cope with my ex-spouse who is openly hostile to Judaism as it pertains to the children we share custody of. I yearn for a deeper connection to Judaism, but my kids are getting so many mixed… More »
Religious Restraint - Are religious Jews mentally challenged? I think yes, and I'll explain why. The human experience lends one to certain drives: you're hungry, you eat. You feel attraction to someone, you get involved in a relationship. Someone insults or attacks you,… More »
Self Discovery - I grew up in the United States and at around age 20 became disillusioned with society. I just felt that the materialism and commercialism was breeding too much greed and corruption. So I have been traveling the world, looking for… More »
Should We Hate Receiving Gifts? - I often hear people quoting the verse “One who hates gifts shall live” (Mishlei (Proverbs) 15:27). This implies our attitude should be that we do not want to receive from others but should make do with what we have. Does… More »
Space Prayer - I have a question pertaining to Judaism and space travel. If humans ever colonize the moon or other planets, then which direction would we face while praying? More »
Spiritual Slump - I've been striving to get more into spirituality. But it seems that every time I make some progress, I find myself slipping right back to where I started. I'm getting discouraged and feel like a failure. Can you help? More »
Struggle - I have been in a year-long legal battle with someone who is trying to literally destroy my life. This has been the biggest challenge I have faced in 25 years (when I lost $5 million in a business deal gone… More »
Surrogate Motherhood - The issue of surrogate motherhood came up in discussion last night. Does Judaism have a position on this? More »
The Complaint Syndrome - I have a problem with complaining. I always seem to be “looking sideways,” checking out what other people have and wondering why I can’t have it, too. This distracts me from moving ahead with my own unique set of skills.… More »
The Purpose of Life - I'm 16, thinking about my life, college, career. I see a lot of unhappy adults and I don't want to end up like them. They have a lot of money, but their personal life seems empty. So, rabbi, what is… More »
Torah Study and the Jewish Soul - I’m trying to sort out a feeling I’m experiencing: I’ve studied about Judaism in Sunday school, was bat mitzvah’d, and have studied Judaism as a student of comparative religions, but never actually studied Jewish texts. It always seemed like some… More »
Why Marry? - I’m a happy single Jewish guy, and don’t personally see a reason to get married. I’ve been in very meaningful relationships, some of them long-lasting, which I feel gives me all I would want to get out of life and… More »
Why Study Torah - I have a religious cousin who is always urging me study Torah. What is the big deal about Torah study, any more than mathematics or gardening? More »
Wisdom - I am approaching college graduation and my friends and I did an exercise: We made a "bucket list" of all the things we want to try and achieve during our lifetime. One friend who I respect a lot, put "acquire… More »

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