Rosh Hashanah: Setting Attainable Goals
By Rabbi Yitzchak Berkowitz
Voices from Jerusalem, (1999) Aish HaTorah Media Center
A Live Lecture on 1 Audio Cassette - Tape# BY541B
Reviewed by Rochelle Caviness - December 31, 2001
In Rosh Hashanah: Setting Attainable Goals, Rabbi Yitzchak Berkowitz discusses what Rosh Hashanah is, and how it applies to the topic of setting goals. This lecture covers a range of topics, including a discussion on the Jewish calender and how it differs from other calenders. Rabbi Berkowitz also examines the spiritual force that underlies holy days, and he explains exactly what it is that Rosh Hashanah commemorates. Rabbi Berkowitz also explains how, each year, we are given a new opportunity to learn, grow, and to imbue our lives with meaning. This lecture is suitable for both beginners and more advanced students.
To be honest, I initially thought that this lecture would simply be a discourse on how to set personal goals. I was, however, pleasantly surprised to find that I was mistaken. This lecture is partly a history course and partly a spiritually directed motivation lecture. This lecture offers a brief overview of the holiday of Rosh Hashanah, and what the term festival means within the Jewish tradition. During this discourse, Rabbi Berkowitz explains that Rosh Hashanah commemorates the Birth of Humanity, not that of creation. And he explains why this is the case, and the importance that we can garner from this fact. He also offers a clear explanation of why the New Year is celebrated on the 1st day of Tishrei. This, despite the fact that the Torah clearly states the month of Nisan, in which Pesach is celebrated, is to be the first month of the year (Shemot, [Exodus] 12:1-2).
Most importantly, this lecture explains what our responsibilities are, as humans, and who we really are, in a spiritual sense. It also examines how we earn the right to exist, and how this need to earn our existence applies to the goals we set for ourselves. By setting appropriate goals for ourselves, we not only grow spiritually and acquire more meaning in our lives. And by extension, setting these goals help us to reaffirm our commitment to serve G-d and thereby ensure the continuation existence of Man.
This lecture can be ordered directly from Voices From Jerusalem. For more information on how to order this title, please call Voices From Jerusalem at 1-800-VOICES-3, or visit their website, which is located at http://www.aish.com/audio.
The Complete ArtScroll Machzor for Rosh Hashanah, by Rabbi Nosson Scherman and Rabbi Meir Zlotowitz.
The Weinberg Foundation's large type edition of the ArtScroll Rosh Hashanah Machzor, combined with the ArtScroll Yom Kippur Machzor, offers readers a unified, and complete set of large type Machzorim for the High Holidays.
Teshuva: To the Abyss and Back, by Rabbi Ari Kahn.
The essence of this lecture is the question, What is Teshuva and how is it achieved? And, is there ever a point that, once crossed, in which Teshuva becomes impossible? In discussing this issue, Rabbi Kahn offers an explanation of what the soul is, our relationship with G-d, and what the purpose is behind Teshuva. He also discusses the nature of sin, and the damaging effect it can have upon the soul.