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The Ramchal - Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzato passed away on this day 240 years ago (He was born 300 years ago). Today his writings are amongst the most influential for mussar (Mesilat Yesharim), hashkafa (Derech Hashem and Da'at Tevunot) and kabbalah (Kelach Pitchei Chachma and Adir Bamarom). Though he died before the age of 40 he left behind a huge number of works, which also include poetry and drama. He was the Jewish equivalent of a Rennaisance man. Despite his brilliance (or because of it) he spent most of his life being attacked as a suspected Sabbatean. He also felt that the Mashiach was coming at any moment, and depending on which letter you read either thought he was the Mashiach, or one of his students was.
Today is the yarzheit of Rabbi Yitzchak Eizik Rabinowitz, most famous as the author of Doros Harishonim. He was also the founder of Agudas Yisroel.
Today is the Yarzheit of one of the most influential Ashkenazi poskim. R' Meir m'Rotenburg, the Maharam, was the teacher of both the Rosh and the Mordechai, who themselves are pretty much the basis of Ashkenazi Halacha. He is also famous for spending the last years of his life being held ransom and eventually dying in captivity. Even though money was raised to ransom him he refused to allow the people to give the money, because he was afraid that kidnapping Jews would become a regular occurrence if the authorities realised that it was lucrative. (Is there a message for today's leaders in that then?).
Here is the wikipedia entry on the Maharam
While everyone else is out burning down the town with their bonfires to celebrate the yarzheit of Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai (who probably didn't die on Lag B'Omer anyway), I wanted to take the opportunity to remember someone who actually did die on this day, and was almost as influential (certainly for Ashkenazi Jews) as the RaSHBI.
"You shall not profane My holy name, and I shall be sanctified in the midst of the Children of Israel, I am the L-rd Who sanctifies you" (Leviticus 22; 32). The idea of Minyan is derived from this verse by the Talmud. The Bavli (Babylonian) and Yerushalmi Talmud use different events to illustrate this concept. Both verses contain the word 'midst' and each Talmud applies the hermeneutic principle of Gezeira Shava to learn from an identical word elsewhere in the Chumash.
Doesn't she look content. This is the basis of the phrase 'sleeping like a baby'
Where I work most of the day. Excellent Jewish content provider.
Link to the original Rabbi Sedley blog
Here she is, asleep (as usual) in her carseat
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