BS’D Korach 5778. David Benchlouch Cape Town, SA Korach; Unbiased Happiness & Well Being. What can promise you happiness? We all know the saying ‘money won’t get you happiness’, most people believe that a higher wage will improve their life and make them happier. It’s interesting, why are we so convinced that money will change […]

Liberated! Tomorrow night we are all free alas of the chametz, the sacks of baggage, and the unwanted shmutz. But we are not free from Mitzvot! On Passover night we have the most Mitzvot to practice in a matter of roughly two hours. Are we really free then? Freedom is expressed through our ability to […]

Hello friends, These several weeks have not been all too easy for Israel. The excessive pressure and recent terror threats and attacks from peripheral corners explicitly convey king Solomon’s vision of our times1 by relating us to a sheep amongst 70 wolves to be true. A sheep is one of the most vulnerable animals, and […]

Rabbi David Benchlouch of the Sephardi Hebrew Congregation of Cape Town gives you a quick and easy guide to the correct method of lighting your Chanukah candles. Chag Sameach! Click here or on the image to view on YouTube  

Where to focus first? Halacha states to light the Chanuka candles in the most visible place at one’s home. If possible one should light candles by the front entrance to the corresponding side of the mezuza, if that cannot be done one should light by the window facing street view or otherwise on the table […]

Welcoming Is Key   ‘And Rachel has taken the teraphim (idols), put them into the camel’s packsaddle and sat on them. Laban rummaged through the whole tent but found nothing’. (Genesis 31, 34)   Rachel decides to steal the teraphim, a skull filled with spelling powers which are believed to have abilities to speak and […]

Shalom friends, I’d like to wish Ela Levy a huge mazal tov on her Bati celebration this Friday night at our synagogue. May you only rejoice in happiness and everlasting growth and make your family proud by your achievements! We are now in the month of Kislev counting the days to Chanukah. Watch this space […]

Shalom friends, It is exam time for the students amongst us and the heat is on. Taking a test or being put to the test is not always fun but every challenge we overcome bears a invaluable outcome in our lives. Rivka the Matriarch is being put to the test this week as Eliezer looks […]

בס”ד עמ”י עש”ו   “And it shall be when you come to the land which Hashem your G-d gives you…you shall take from the first of every fruit of the ground from the Land Hashem has given you and you shall put it in a basket and go to the place that Hashem your G-d […]

This week we learn about the captive taken from war, the Ohr Hachaim teaches that the verse stating that one must captivate the prisoners it infers to captivating but releasing the bad of the captivated.  It related to our inclinations. We can release the part of us inclined for otherwise negative behavior towards the good […]

This Shabbat and Sunday is Rosh Hodesh Elul. Just 30 days to Rosh Hashana and 40 days to Yom Kippur, it is customarily accepted to begin thinking about our new year and our new beginning. Some of the many ways to connect is by the Selichot, by observing more and reflecting more. By checking ourselves […]

This week’s Parasha opens with the episode of the Red Cow. The Parsha begins however with an introductory phrase: ” and this is the decree of the Torah”, and goes on to list the Halachik parameters of  the Red Cow. The obvious question is, how is the Cow considered the underlying decree or summary of constitutions […]

In Parshat Chukat Moses hits the rock instead of speaking to it as Gd commands and is punished along with Ahron not to enter Israel. Why though does Moses hit the rock, he clearly hears Gd command him to speak to it?    The Midrash shares an insight that our entire sustenance in the wilderness […]

Shalom friends, In this week’s Parsha we find a surprise suggestion to a puzzling question we have been facing. Why are Jews despised around the world, why do endless countries use critical excuses for demilitarized behavior towards us? Why were we abused throughout history in such a cold-hearted fashion over and over again? Articles out […]

Shalom friends, I was struck with irony to my barber’s  response regarding the  Holiday we’re celebrating next week. ” Received  the Bible at Mount Sinai?” Well you better keep the New Testament” he offers. While I politely declined his proposal he continued with a detailed description of how the fire of hell will not cease […]

Why was the very first human being created as a lone creature? The Tanaim in the Mishnaic period between the years 10-190 of the Common Era draw a moral and ethical hypothesis from this episode. Having everything well prepared before his formation, Adam was undeniably the peak of genesis. The entire world in its magnitude […]

Parashat Shoftim begins with a command to appoint judges and ministers amongst us. It later on commands us to appoint a king to rule the nation. This is vital in the establishment of the land, as the Jews were now making their way into Eretz Israel. This is the first thing they must tend to if […]

Two conflicting figures are repeatedly mentioned throughout the holidays. Avraham Avinu & Yitzchak Avinu. We can learn so much from the personality of these pioneering figures.   Let’s have a look. Avraham Avinu, at the age of 137 longed for continuity, he wanted his off springs to carry on where he left off, but was willing to give up everything […]

In Parashat Ha’azinu we find yet a rather surprising song. As Moshe Rabenu turns to the Hebrews of the dessert with his very final words. A poetic, emotional and colourful song. But really looking into the meaning and depth of it, Moshe Rabenu was in fact rebuking Am Yisrael with things he had kept in […]

Iran is having the world spinning. Will we again open the gates to the potential dangers incurred? This proposal has gotten Prime Minister Netanyahu to condemn all negotiations. Did you know that there is a rally in the United States this Sunday in Times Square? American Jews of all sectors are coming together to protest […]

A terrible tragedy in Israel again, this time in Damascus gate. I’m sure you’ve all heard of the murder of 19 year old Hadar Cohen, a female soldier. Hadar was in her first week of service, only two months since she had joined the military and was shot and killed from point blank by a […]

Earlier this week Zvi Ammar, the main Jewish leader in the French city of Marseille urged men to stop wearing the skullcap, “to avoid being identified as Jewish”. He said the “exceptional measure” was needed to protect Jewish lives. The advice was given in direct response to a violent anti-Semitic attack this Monday on Benjamin Amsalem, […]

Chapter 14 verse 1: Hashem spoke to Moshe, saying, Speak to the children of Israel and let them turn back and camp before Pi- Hahiroth, Between Migdol and the sea, before Baal- zephon; you shall encamp opposite it, by the sea. So here Hashem asks the Hebrews to turn back towards Egypt. How so? Hashem […]

In our Parasha we read about the flood God has decreed upon the world that nearly led to the extinction of all life form on earth. Noah was saved by the ark he and his family harboured in for an entire year. 365 days of devastation. Of uncertainty and maybe despair. 8 people in total […]

After the first wold war, there was a brilliant man by name of France Rosentzveig, a German Jew who was wrestling with a tremendous problem, should he convert to Christianity or not. Because things were very bad. Jews had restrictions, they could not work where they wanted, could not get official positions, nor could they […]

On R”h and Y”h we say the psalm for Parnasa Psalm 24 “Ledavid Mizmor who will go up and stand in the mountain of Hashem”? A rather tempting, daring and brave task to accomplish. The answer is surprising. Not one who knows the Torah nor that runs after chesed( charitable acts) all day, rather he […]

In Parashat Ha’azinu we find yet a rather surprising song. As Moshe Rabeinu turns to the Hebrews of the dessert with his very final words. A poetic, emotional and colourful song. But really looking into the meaning and depth of it, Moshe Rabenu was in fact rebuking Am Yisrael with things he had kept in […]

In the first day of creation Hashem has the luminaries. He has said “let there be light”. The verse states that G-D has acknowledged the good in the light, as he has “seen the light to be good”. What did God not create in the Genesis? There are several types of light in the world, […]

Parashat Lech lecha reveals the behind-the-scenes communications analysis between Hashem and Avraham. While some leaders take credit of their work and ideas as their own they may teams of professionals for guidance. Avraham Avinu the legendary revolutionist and founder of monotheism openly reveals his motives. He had Hashem guiding him and was proud to show it. […]