Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Rundown of Major Articles/Events in Connection with Aish Kodesh Hilula and Sefer Debut

There are a lot of exciting things going on  in connection with the big hilula being held by my shul, Aish Kodesh (Woodmere, NY), this motzei Shabbos at the Young Israel of Lawrence-Cedarhurst.

First is the Hilula itself.  Besides naming the shul after the sefer Aish Kodesh by Rav Kalonymus Kalman Shapira of Piaseczna, Hy"d, Rav Moshe Weinberger has been holding hilulas (events to celebrate the life and teachings of a tzaddik on his yahrtzeit) in honor of the Piaseczner Rebbe since 2000. As noted above, this year's hilula is going to be this motzei Shabbos, right after parshas Noach, at 8:30 p.m. at the Young Israel of Lawrence-Cedarhurst (corner of Broadway and Spruce in Cedarhurst, NY in the Five Towns). Yosef Karduner will be playing with Gadi Pugatch on violin (who you might recognize from HERE) and Rav Weinberger will be speaking. So if you're in the tri-state area, come on out motzei Shabbos! It promises to be an amazing evening.

Second is the sefer debuting at the hilula. Many moons ago, Rav Weinberger asked me to make a sefer adapting the talks he gave at previous years' hilulas into writing. B"H, with the help of many sponsors, I did that and the sefer is now out and ready to be read! It's entitled "Warmed by the Fire of the Aish Kodesh - Torah from the Hilulas of Reb Kalonymus Kalman Shapira of Piaseczna." There will be many copies of the sefer available for purchase at the hilula. If  you can't be there, you can also buy it at your local Jewish bookstore, through Feldheim's website or on Amazon.com.

I also recommend that you read a review of the book that Neil Harris just posted at his blog Modern Uberdox. Really heartfelt and beautiful. To me, the key line from the review is this:
I think the greatness of this publication is that it opens up a thirst that we don’t even know we have. We learn about and from the Piseczna Rebbe and the sefer leaves you wanting more. Wanting to learn his seforim, wanting to overcome the darkness in your life, wanting to come closer to Hashem. That’s why this is a more than just a sefer.
If you want to get more insight into what is motivating Rav Weinberger to do so many things to perpetuate the teachings of the Aish Kodesh (naming the shul after him, holding an annual hilula on his yahrtzeit, instituting a siyum on Shas by the men in shul and on Tanach by the women in shul on the yahrtzeit), I definitely recommend you watch this video. Rav Weinberger let me sit down with him for an "interview" motzei Shabbos Shuva. It's 8 minutes long and in the video, Rav Weinberger gives a much deeper insight into what motivates him to do so much for the Piaseczner and why his teachings seem to speak so much to this generation. Just turn the volume up on your computer/device though because unfortunately the sound is a bit low!

Inyan Magazine Cover Story This Week, My Five Towns Jewish Times Article, and Nachum Segal JM in the AM Appearance

In honor of the Piaseczner's yahrtzeit and to raise awareness about this tzaddik so people will explore his teachings more, I wrote the cover story for this week's issue of Hamodia Weekly's Inyan Magazine! So pick up a copy of that this week! I assume it will be on shelves tomorrow (Wednesday) or Thursday. [Update 10/14/15: I've inserted a picture of the Inyan Magazine cover on the right and you can see some pictures of the interior of the issue here as well.]

[Update 10/15/15: My article in the Five Towns Jewish Times about the Hilula and other goings-on at Aish Kodesh just went online today! So you can read that HERE. Enjoy!

I am also going to be a guest on Nachum Segal's JM in the AM show at 7:45 tomorrow (Wednesday) morning at about 7:45 a.m. to talk about the hilula and what it's all about! So listen in at that time at 91.1 FM or online. I'll IY"H update this post with a link to the audio when it's available on their website. [Update 10/14/15: You can now listen to the full interview online HERE - 24 minutes - or in the embedded Youtube video below. Nachum asked me about the Hilula, the sefer release, and a few questions about my somewhat unusual personal background as well.]

Most importantly, pick up one of the Piaseczner's seforim and make a seder in learning and applying it!

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