Thursday, April 30, 2015

[Aneinu] Please Daven for 14 yr old hit by car in Lakewood

Please daven for Noach Tzvi ben Gittel, who is listed in very serious condition after being hit by a car while riding his bicycle in Lakewood.

Live Music Alert! Nachum Hosted Six13 Live at JM in the AM for the Official Debut of “Vol. 6: Thirteen”

Excitement was in the air this morning as Nachum hosted members of the amazing Jewish A Capella group Six13 live in the studio to officially debut their latest CD, “Vol. 6: Thirteen” and have them perform some songs on the air. “For 13 years, they’ve pushed the boundaries of Jewish music and redefined even our own understanding of the artistry that can be achieved with the human voice. And now Six13 breaks new ground with their latest release, ‘Vol. 6: Thirteen.’ Early consensus is that this is by far the best Six13 record yet. Featuring fantastic new original songs, popular covers and hit viral parodies, Six13 ‘Vol. 6: Thirteen’ celebrates the group’s ‘Bar Mitzvah’ with unprecedented flair. On top of it all, the album features killer guest vocals from Israeli superstar Gad Elbaz (on a cover of his mega-hit “Hashem Melech”) and popular vocal trio The Zemiros Group.”

OU TORAH ONE+ONE Rachel By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz

Many have the practice to recite, in the prayer following Shemoneh Esrei, a verse that starts and ends with the same letter as their name, or that contains their name, or both. This is considered a source of merit. In this series, we will briefly analyze these verses. רָבוּעַ הָיָה כָּפוּל עָשׂוּ אֶת הַחֹשֶׁן זֶרֶת אָרְכּוֹ וְזֶרֶת רָחְבּוֹ כָּפוּל They made the breastplate square; it was folded over. Its length was a span and its width was a span when folded over. – Exodus 39:9 The verse for the name Rachel discusses the choshen, the breastplate of the Kohein Gadol (High Priest). The traditional commentaries don’t have anything to say on this verse, though Rabbi Aryeh Kaplan says that it seems that the choshen was folded along its width rather than along its length, with the result that it was a span square when folded. (A span is a half-cubit, about nine inches.)

CHABAD.ORG SPIRITUAL GUIDE TO THE OMER Day Five of Week 4: Hod of Netzach 26th Day of the Omer(11 IYAR) By Simon Jacobson

Yielding - which is a result of humility - is an essential element of enduring. Standing fast can sometimes be a formula for destruction. The oak, lacking the ability to bent in the hurricane, is uprooted. The reed, which yields to the wind, survives without a problem. Do I know when to yield, out of strength not fear? Why am I often afraid to yield? Endurance is fueled by inner strength. Hod of netzach is the humble recognition and acknowledgement that the capacity to endure and prevail comes from the soul that G-d gave each person. This humility does not compromise the drive of endurance; on the contrary, it intensifies it, because human endurance can go only so far and endure only so much, whereas endurance that comes from the Divine soul is limitless. Do I attribute my success solely to my own strength and determination? Am I convinced that I am all powerful due to my level of endurance? Where do I get the strength at times when everything seems so bleak?

OU TORAH MISHNA BERURA YOMI (DIRSHU) MB 18b: Tzitzis By Rabbi Aaron E. Glatt, MD

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[Aneinu] Please take Shabbos in early as a zchus for Shalom Daniel ben Leah

The Ray family urgently requests that everyone take in Shabbos ten minutes early, as a zechus for a refuah shleimah for Shalom Daniel ben Leah. This Shabbos especially, but we'd like to continue as long as necessary. Please pass this message on to everyone you know. We should hear besurot tovot!

Wednesday, April 29, 2015

[Aneinu] Please Daven

From an Aneinu member: Please daven for my grandson who is in the hospital with an infection. YEHOSHUA NOACH ben CHASIAH ROCHEL.

OU TORAH #57 B’inyan Kesiva Kedibur B’Sefiras Haoimer By Rabbi Yaakov Moishe Shurkin

Teshuvos RA”E Simanim 29- 32, U’b’inyan Teikef L’netilah Brocha

CHABAD.ORG SPIRITUAL GUIDE TO THE OMER Day Four of Week 4: Netzach of Netzach 25th Day (10 IYAR)of the Omer By Simon Jacobson

Examine the endurance aspect of endurance, its expression and intensity. Everyone has willpower and determination. We have the capacity to endure much more than we can imagine, and to prevail under the most trying of circumstances. Ask yourself: Is my behavior erratic?

OU TORAH Shmuel Aleph 24 By Rabbi Shalom Rosner

Clivk here.

OU TORAH MISHNA BERURA YOMI (DIRSHU) MB 18a: Tzitzis By Rabbi Aaron E. Glatt, MD

Click here.

THE BAIS HAVAAD HALACHA JOURNAL: Volume 5775 Issue XXVI Parshas Tazria-Metzora Hidden Treasure Reveald by Tzara'as Searching Ancient Walls, Solving Today’s Questions By Rabbi Tzvi Price

Someone recently asked the Bais HaVaad the following question. The person had gone to a thrift shop that sold used clothing and had succeeded in finding a nice suit. While wearing the suit for the first time he reached into one of the pockets and found a hundred dollar bill that must have been left in the suit by the original owner. He wanted to know if he was allowed to keep the money or was he required to return it to the thrift shop.

THE BAIS HAVAAD HALACHA JOURNAL: Volume 5775 Issue XXVI Parshas Tazria-Metzora The Death Tax and Avurei Achasanta Does the Torah Favor Such Taxes? By Rabbi Yitzchak Grossman

The Death Tax The Republican controlled U.S. House of Representatives recently passed, on mostly party lines, a bill repealing the estate tax (“death tax”), although it is unclear that the bill can pass the Senate and will likely be vetoed by the President even if it does. One of the main arguments in favor of the tax is from the perspective of fairness; for example, liberal political economist Robert Reich has argued that tolerating the increasing concentration of wealth within a narrow segment of society is “unfair”, “unjust”, and “absurd". Opponents of the tax largely argue that the tax has deleterious economic and social effects, but also that it is an unfair attack on success and constitutes unjust double taxation. What is the Torah's perspective on such taxes? The question can obviously be approached from multiple angles; in this article we consider the implications of the halachic admonition against overriding the Torah's inheritance laws by stipulating an alternate disposition of one's property.

YU TORAH and NAALEH.COM PARSHAS TAZRIA-METZORAH 5775 Completely Covered By: Mrs. Shira Smiles

According to tradition, the affliction of tzoraas characterized by specifically described lesions was a result and consequence of sin, generally loshon horo. Tzoraas was to be diagnosed not by a doctor but by Aharon or one of his descendents, a kohane. The priest was to declare the “patient” either pure or impure rather than healthy or sick. However, the Torah includes an interesting twist in the diagnosis. If the patient has tzoraas over a small part of his body or over most of his body, the priest will declare him impure. However, if the entire body is covered with tzoraas, the priest must declare him pure. What is the purpose of this seemingly illogical anomaly? What are we to learn from this exception to the rule? Click here for Summary by Channie Koplowitz Stein.

NAALEH.COM Parshat Metzorah: Seeing the Good By: Rabbi Hershel Reichman

Rabbi Hershel Reichman explains that through a unique understanding of the affliction of tzaraas, Shem MiShmuel expounds on fundamental ideas of how to view our fellow Jew. This Torah class is available online in streaming video and for download in mp3 and ipod formats.

NAALEH.COM Parshat Tazriah: Fresh Beginnings By: Rabbi Hershel Reichman

In this shiur (Torah class) Rabbi Reichman discusses how this week's parsha,Parshat Tazriah teaches us about our constant relationship with Hashem. This Torah class is available online in streaming video and for download in mp3 and ipod formats.

YU TORAH LEARN PIRKEI AVOT WITH Rabbi Dr. Aharon Lichtenstein ZT"L

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VBM On Aliya: The Uniqueness of Living in Eretz Yisrael By Harav Aharon Lichtenstein zt"l

Why Yaakov Settled in Eretz Yisrael Parashat Vayeshev begins: “Yaakov settled in the land of his father’s dwelling, in the land of Canaan” (Bereishit 37:1). What need is there for the seeming repetition about where he dwelt? The commentators offer several explanations; I believe the simplest is a combination of those suggested by Rashbam and Ibn Ezra. The verse sets forth two separate reasons for Yaakov’s choice of where to settle. One is the fact that it was “the land of his father’s dwelling,” his family home. The other is that it was “the land of Canaan,” as the Ibn Ezra explains, “the chosen land.” What is significant about the fact that it was “the land of his father’s dwelling?”

VBM Shaving for Shabbat during Sefira By Harav Aharon Lichtenstein zt"l

Our earliest sources make no mention of a ban on haircuts during Sefirat ha-Omer (the days between Pesach and Shavuot). The Ritz Giat, for example, refers only to marriage:

VBM Mutual Responsibility in the Jewish State By Harav Aharon Lichtenstein zt"l

Without a doubt, the simplest application of mutual responsibility – arevut – is charity and assistance to others. References to mutual responsibility appear, however, in purely halakhic realms as well. In this shiur, I wish to discuss some of the halakhic contexts in which the idea of mutual responsibility arises, and their special application in Eretz Yisrael.


Judaism emerged as an answer to a series of questions:How can finite human beings be connected to an infinite God?How can they be connected to one another?The answer is through words,words the communicate bind.Loshon hora by poisoning language destroys the Judaic vision.When we speak disparagingly of others we diminish them.That is why why the Sages take loshon hora so seriously.Never take language lightly implies the Torah.It is as essential to our survival as te air we breathe.(For the rest of this divar torah look in Covenant and Conversation Vayikra pages 201-206)

OU TORAH The Circumcision of Desire By Britain's Former Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks

It is hard to trace with any precision the moment when a new idea makes its first appearance on the human scene, especially one as amorphous as that of love. But love has a history. [1] There is the contrast we find in Greek, and then Christian thought between eros and agape: sexual desire and a highly abstract love for humanity in general.

Israel, The Gateway of Hope: Ten quotes from Rabbi Sack’s writings about Israel

"ISRAEL always was a tiny country, home to a tiny people, yet what our ancestors achieved there transformed the spiritual horizon of humankind. It was there the prophets taught the worship of the one God whose children we are; there that Elijah spoke truth to power, Hosea told of God’s love, and Amos of His justice; there that Micah said: What does God ask of you but to act justly and love mercy and walk humbly with your God. It was there that King David sang psalms, and his son Solomon built the Temple. And though the people often fell short of the high ideals to which God had summoned them, in generation after generation there arose visionary men and women who recalled the people to their destiny as a holy people in the holy land. Their teachings never died, and have the power to inspire us still.”


We once again read about types of plagues and dermatological illnesses that create a climate of impunity and negativity. We are no longer privy to the identity and physical appearance of these plagues that are recorded for us in this week's Torah reading. These plagues are or were unknown to us and they are certainly not the modern form of leprosy, which was the usual understanding of them for number of past centuries. In the absence of true understanding of these plagues and of the existence of the Temple, currently this subject matter is an esoteric one rather than theoretical.


The Torah describes itself as a Torat chayim - a Torah of life and living. There are many possible interpretations of this phrase. It can refer to the fact that the Torah is eternal, vibrant and ever renewing, the source and fountain of life – that it is a living Torah. However to my mind, this phrase implies that it is also, if not even primarily so, the Torah of practicality and reality.

RAV KOOK ON METZORA Part 2 The Power of Speech

Only in Israel What is the root cause for the disease of tzara'at as described in the Torah? The Midrash explains that this skin disease is a punishment for gossip and slander. A person suffering from tzara'at is called a metzora because he is "motzee sheim ra" — he spreads derogatory reports (Vayikra Rabbah 16:1. See Rambam, Hilchot Tzara'at 16:15, that one fulfills the mitzvah "Be careful regarding tzara'at" (Deut. 24:8-9) by avoiding gossip).

RAV KOOK ON TAZRIA Part 2 Man versus Mosquito

Why does the Torah discuss the laws of taharah (ritual purity) for humans only after teaching the analogous laws concerning animals, differentiating between those animals which may be eaten and those which are unclean? Should not humanity, the crown of creation, come first?

RAV KOOK ON TAZRIA/METZORA Purifying Time and Soul

The Torah discusses various types of tum'ah (ritual impurity), the most prominent being tzara'at, a skin affliction similar to leprosy. Purification from these forms of impurity includes immersion in a mikveh (ritual bath) or natural spring. Immersion alone, however, is not sufficient; even after immersing, the individual remains impure until the start of the evening. "The sun sets and then he is ritually clean. He may then eat the sacred offerings that are his portion." (Lev. 22:7)

Rav Kook and Zionism

During controversy over the Hetter Mechirah in 1910, Rabbi Yaakov David Wilovsky (the "Ridbaz") of Safed leveled a serious accusation. He accused Rav Kook of abandoning his religious beliefs and becoming a Zionist in his old age. (In fact, from a very early age Rav Kook was imbued with a great love for Eretz Yisrael.)

Tuesday, April 28, 2015

OU TORAH 19 LETTERS Letter #15 – Reply part 2 By Daniel Adler

Click here.

CHABAD.ORG SPIRITUAL GUIDE TO THE OMER Day Three of Week 4: Tiferet of Netzach 24th Day of the Omer(9 IYAR) By Simon Jacobson

Healthy endurance, directed to develop good qualities and modifying bad ones, will always be compassionate. The compassion of endurance reflects a most beautiful quality of endurance: an enduring commitment to help another grow. Endurance without compassion is misguided and selfish. Endurance needs to be not just loving to those who deserve love, but also compassionate to the less fortunate. Does my determination compromise my compassion for others? Am I able to rise above my ego and empathize with my competitors? Am I gracious in victory?

OU TORAH Shmuel Aleph 23 By Rabbi Shalom Rosner

Click here.

OU TORAH MISHNA BERURA YOMI (DIRSHU) MB 17b: Tzitzis Rabbi Aaron E. Glatt, MD

Click here.

Nachum and Rabbi Gabi Fried Discussed Dirshu’s Daf HaYomi B’halacha and the Testing that Helps the Participants Retain their Torah Learning

Nachum welcomed Rabbi Gabi Fried, one of the Magidei Shiur (class presenter) for Dirshu’s Daf Hayomi B’halacha to this morning’s JM in the AM to discuss Dirshu and focus on the testing that is part of their daf hayomi b’halacha. Nachum and Rabbi Fried had a lengthy, fascinating conversation about a number of halachic issues covered in the Daf Hayomi B’halacha to give the listeners a taste of what they can experience if they get involved. Dirshu is a Torah Learning organization which is structured in a way that enables participants to properly internalize what they have learned in a way that they can remember it. The program provides learning schedules and guidance to help participants with their learning. Subsequently they provide testing to encourage review of the material. For more information please contact Dirshu at or 888-5-DIRSHU ext. 141.

Sunday, April 26, 2015

The Schottenstein Edition Sefer Hachinuch / Book of Mitzvos - Volume #7 Beha'aloscha - Va'eschanan: Mitzvos 380-427 IS AT KESHER STAM

The Jan Czuker Family Elucidation of the Torah's Commandments Sefer HaChinuch is one of the great classics of the 13th Century. Although the anonymous author states that he wrote it for his son and the youth of his time to learn on Sabbath afternoons, it was embraced by the entire nation as a masterpiece. The author lists all 613 Commandments following the weekly Torah Readings. He explains the source of each mitzvah, suggests a reason for it and the lesson it contains for us, and provides a summary of its laws. Chinuch gives expression to the essence of the mitzvos in a manner that speaks to the heart of the Jew. No other work approaches it in presenting the grandeur and majesty of the 613 Mitzvos. Thanks to the gifted scholars of ArtScroll/Mesorah, English readers — scholars and laymen alike — can now study and understand Sefer HaChinuch with clarity and in depth, as never before. The Hebrew text, authoritatively researched by Machon Yerushalayim, is newly vowelized. Every word and phrase is translated and explained, following the pattern of the ArtScroll Schottenstein Talmud. Notes explain the background and concepts. Sources of the laws are cited and explained. References to other works and classic halachic sources are provided for those interested in further research. Illuminating "Insights" reveal broad dimensions of the mitzvos. An Overview discusses the inner meaning and spiritual uplift of the mitzvos.(From Artscroll)

OU TORAH Shmuel Aleph 21 By Rabbi Shalom Rosner

Click here.

OU TORAH MISHNA BERURA YOMI (DIRSHU) MB 16b: Tzitzis By Rabbi Aaron E. Glatt, MD

Click here.

[Aneinu] Please Daven - Rikel bat Tzivia Surgery Monday

Our mother, Chicagoan Mrs. Rita Kirshner, is having a delicate surgical procedure done IY"H on Monday. We would like to ask our friends to daven on her behalf. Our understanding is that the most powerful Tehillim is perek kuf yud tes (119). If you are a principal, could you have as many students as possible say this form of tehillim? For younger grades, please have them say their regular tehillim as a zchus for her refuah shlaima.

Saturday, April 25, 2015

CHABAD.ORG SPIRITUAL GUIDE TO OMER Day One of Week 4: Chesed of Netzach 22nd Day of the Omer (7 IYAR) By Simon Jacobson

Week Four - Netzach Endurance and ambition is a combination of determination and tenacity. It is a balance of patience, persistence and guts. Endurance is also being reliable and accountable, which establishes security and commitment. Without endurance, any good endeavor or intention has no chance of success. Endurance means to be alive, to be driven by what counts. It is the readiness to fight for what you believe, to go all the way. Without such commitment any undertaking remains flat and empty. It is an energy which comes from within and stops at nothing to achieve its goals. This, of course, requires that endurance be closely examined to ensure that it is used in a healthy and productive manner. Ask yourself: How committed am I to my values? How much would I fight for them? Am I easily swayed? What price am I ready to pay for my beliefs? Is there any truth for which I would be ready to give my life? Effective endurance needs to encompass the following seven ingredients: love, discipline, compassion, endurance, humility, bonding and dignity. The problems people have with endurance and commitment are due to a lack of one or more of these seven components.

CHABAD.ORG SPIRITUAL GUIDE TO THE OMER Day Seven of Week 3: Malchut of Tiferet 21st Day of the Omer(6 IYAR) By Simon Jacobson

Examine the dignity of your compassion. For compassion to be complete (and enhance the other six aspects of compassion) it must recognize and appreciate individual sovereignty. It should boost self-esteem and cultivate human dignity. Both your own dignity and the dignity of the one benefiting from your compassion. Is my compassion expressed in a dignified manner? Do I manifest and emphasize majesty in my compassion? Does it elicit dignity in others? Do I recognize the fact that when I experience compassion as dignified it will reflect reciprocally in the one who receives compassion?

Friday, April 24, 2015

OU TORAH and THE BAIS HAVAAD THE DAF IN HALACHA KESUVOS DAF 80 Assets in Wife's Name: Modern Sources By Rav Yitzchak Grossman

Rav Yitzchak Grossman brings various shilas about putting property in the wife's name.The Poskim say beis din should investigate why he did it.Click here for the rest of the shiur.

YU TORAH Toronto Torah: Tazria-Metzora 5775

Description: Toronto Torah for Tazria-Metzora 5775 is dedicated in memory of Rav Aharon Lichtenstein zt"l, with articles about Rabbi Lichtenstein and his writings.

YU TORAH Hesped for HaRav Aharon Lichtenstein zt'l By Rabbi Yitzchak Etshalom

Click here.

OU TORAH #56 B’inyan Melaches Zoreh V’im Mutur Lishfoch Me’at Mayim M’chalon By Rabbi Yaakov Moishe Shurkin

V’haruach Menasheves U’Mefazeres Hamayim – Teshuvos RA-E Siman 20

CHABAD.ORG SPIRITUAL GUIDE TO THE OMER Day Six of Week 3: Yesod of Tiferet 20th Day of the Omer (5 IYAR) By Simon Jacobson

For compassion to be fully realized, it needs bonding. It requires creating a channel between giver and receiver. A mutuality that extends beyond the moment of need. A bond that continues to live on. That is the most gratifying result of true compassion. Do you bond with the one you have compassion for, or do you remain apart? Does your interaction achieve anything beyond a single act of sympathy?

[Aneinu] Please Daven

Please daven for a refuah shlema for a Chicagoan, Chana Frayda bas Nechama Gittel.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Ksubos Daf 43 – Katlonis Part 2 By Rabbi Moshe Elefant

Rabbi Elefant brings the Poskim who say there no din of katlonis in Eretz Yisrael(Yom Haatzmut connection).for the rest of the shiur click here.

Ksubos Daf 43 - Katlonis Part 1 By Rabbi Moshe Elefant

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CHABAD.ORG SPIRITUAL GUIDE TO THE OMER Day Five of Week 3: Hod of Tiferet 19th Day of the Omer (4 IYAR) By Simon Jacobson

Compassion must include humility for it not to be condescending and pretentious. Hod is recognizing that my ability to be compassionate and giving does not make me better than the recipient; it is the acknowledgement and appreciation that by creating one who needs compassion G-d gave me the gift of being able to bestow compassion. Thus there is no place for haughtiness in compassion. Do I feel superior because I am compassionate? Do I look down at those that need my compassion? Am I humble and thankful to G-d for giving me the ability to have compassion for others?

OU TORAH MISHNA BERURA YOMI (DIRSHU) MB 16a: Tzitzis By Rabbi Aaron E. Glatt, MD

Click here.

Wednesday, April 22, 2015

[Aneinu] Please Daven for the Kalever Rebbe

Tefillos for the Kalever Rebbe The Kalever Rebbe, Rav Moshe Taub, is in need of rachamei Shomayim after being hospitalized in Manhattan. The Rebbe, who resides in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, has been battling serious illness for a while and his condition has deteriorated. The Rebbe is the sixth rebbe in the direct succession of Kaliver admorim. He immigrated to the United States as a child shortly after World War II. His father, Rav Menachem Shlomo, was a Holocaust survivor who rebuilt the Kalever chassidus, which had been decimated by the Nazis, after the war in Brooklyn, New York. Upon his father’s passing in 1978, the present Rebbe assumed the position of Kaliver Rebbe, and under his dynamic leadership, his kehillah has enjoyed astounding growth and remarkable success. In addition to leading the institutions built by his father, the Rebbe has devoted his life with endless self-sacrifice to visiting and traveling all over the globe where there are Jewish communities to be mechazeik Yidden on a communal and individual basis. For the last thirty years, the Rebbe has been reaching out to Jews of all stripes, his mission being solely to see Yiddishkeit strengthened and sanctified. All are asked to daven for Rav Moshe ben Reizel l’refuah sheleimah. {Gavriel Newscenter}Click here for article

OU TORAH ONE+ONE Rivka By Rabbi Jack Abramowitz

Many have the practice to recite, in the prayer following Shemoneh Esrei, a verse that starts and ends with the same letter as their name, or that contains their name, or both. This is considered a source of merit. In this series, we will briefly analyze these verses. רִגְזוּ וְאַל תֶּחֱטָאוּ אִמְרוּ בִלְבַבְכֶם עַל מִשְׁכַּבְכֶם וְדֹמּוּ סֶלָה Tremble and do not sin; reflect with your heart upon your bed and be still. Selah! – Psalms 4:5 The Talmud (Brachos 5a) uses this verse as a mnemonic to explain the steps a person should take in order to fight his evil inclination (yetzer hara).

THE BAIS HAVAAD HALACHA JOURNAL: Volume 5775 Issue XXV Parshas Shemini Profiting from Non-Kosher Food Items If You Already Bought Treif Food, May You Sell it for a Profit? by: HaRav Daniel Neustadt Shlit”a

In this week's Parsha we learn about the various kosher and non-kosher animals. Not only is it forbidden to eat non-kosher animals but it is often forbidden to do business with them, as well. We are also taught that, likewise, one must not feed non-kosher foods to children.

THE BAIS HAVAAD HALACHA JOURNAL: Volume 5775 Issue XXV Parshas Shemini The Importance of Driving Safely A Good Look at How We Drive Rabbi Micha Cohn

With the summer approaching, we often find ourselves on the road more than usual. Unfortunately, irresponsible driving claims many lives every year. While the concept that we are forbidden to endanger ourselves or others is quite elementary, people often rationalize their behavior because they don’t view it to be so dangerous. This lack of respect for safety regulations can have disastrous consequences. In this article we will present some fascinating halachic sources on the importance of respecting these rules, largely based on a reponsum from the late Rabbi Shmuel Wosner ZT”L.

NAALEH.COM Dimensions of Sefirat Haomer By: Mrs. Shira Smiles

In this class, Mrs. Shira Smiles discusses that we cannot get caught up only in the technical requirements of counting each night of the Omer and the customs of mourning during this time. Sefirat Haomer is a time for spiritual accounting in preparation for receiving the Torah, specifically in the areas of loving one's fellow man and increasing our consciousness of G-d.