Nachshon – On Embracing Risk as An Institutional Value

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Before they hired their first staff member, the board of Lippman Kanfer Family Foundation defined their core values, which were later adopted by Lippman Kanfer Foundation for Living Torah.

One of those values is:

נחשון “NACHSHON” (First into the water): Drive Forward

We embrace new insights, big ideas, and fresh initiatives with an action orientation, learning as  we go. We are willing to rise to the occasion when others cannot, do not, or will not.

The story of Nachshon is a midrash you may have shared at your seder this year – at the Red Sea, with the Egyptian army closing in, Moses stood with his arms outstretched – but the sea was unmoved until one man, Nachshon, plunged in. Continue reading

Why Count the Omer?

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Life speeds past us so quickly.

Jewish practice offers multiple techniques to slow down and appreciate the passing of time, the change of the seasons, the preciousness of the days that we have. Without a reminder, a gimmick of sorts, it’s hard to remember to do this kind of inhale and exhale that can help us get a handle on our lives as they otherwise speed past.

Counting the Omer begins the second night of Passover to offer such an opportunity — both to stop and appreciate the next 49 evenings, and to continue the same kind of self-reflective work that many of us begin at the Seder when we ask ourselves: where am I stuck? How can I help myself and others become free? Continue reading