Keeping up with the Cohen’s!

Chabad of Mid-Hudson Valley Newsletter

June 29, 2012  
Tamuz 9, 5772
Pirkei Avot: Chapter 5
A word from the Rabbi 

art calendar

The Jewish Art Calendar is one of the most popular Jewish publications and serves the many thousands of Jewish families throughout the Mid Hudson Valley with a wealth of Jewish knowledge, Holiday awareness, recipes as well as beautiful artwork. It is sent out free of charge to homes and businesses throughout the entire region and well beyond. Every year we receive calls from all over requesting this beautiful calendar, which serves as a Jewish lifeline to so many.

The Jewish Art Calendar also serves as a major source of revenue for Chabad of Mid Hudson Valley. Chabad is always there to help any Jew in need as to us every Jew is family and “belongs”. There are no membership dues and no one is ever turned away from any event, or denied help due to financial difficulty.
The funds for the Jewish Art calendar are raised solely through advertisements and your contributions.
These are difficult economic times and charitable contributions have been greatly reduced.
We turn to all of you asking you to please place an ad or make a contribution in any amount toward the Jewsih Art Calendar. Donations in the amount of Chai ($36, $54, $180 or more) or any amount you can afford. Your name(s) will be listed on the page of contributors, or, if you so wish, you can be listed anonymously. Donations can also be made in the memory, or in honor, of a loved one.
Please send in your contribution or advertisement today to:
The Jewish Art Calendar
Chabad Lubavitch of Mid Hudson Valley
63 Vassar Rd.
Poughkeepsie, N.Y. 12603
You can also donate through PayPal by clicking here.
Please e-mail an exact listing of names you wish to list or advertisement through e-mailing us at
Thanking you in advance for your help and support.
Rabbi Yacov and Hindy Borenstein

          The Holy Temple

A series of classes on the Holy Temple and its significance.
Tuesday’s July 10, 17 & 24 – 7:30 PM
at the Chabad Center
class on the holy temple

Dear Friends,

“That’s some new kitchen Sandra just had done. State of the art!” “Psst . . . did you see the new car Mark just took delivery of? It’s got every gadget in the book!” Common conversation. Rather routine, everyday talk.

They tell of a rep on the road who had broken all records for sales in his company. When asked the secret of his success, he explained that the first thing he said when someone opened the door was, “Did you see what your neighbor Mrs. Jones just got?” That trick never failed him.

This was never the Jewish ethic, however. We were taught differently, and our ancient value system is as relevant as ever in contemporary life. Privacy, modesty and discretion are all characteristics our people have cherished since we became a nation.

“Balaam raised his eyes, and saw Israel dwelling according to its tribes” (Numbers 24:3).

What was so special about the Israelites’ dwelling? Rashi offers one interpretation of the verse, that the doorways of the Israelites’ tents in the wilderness were arranged so that they did not face each other. That way, one person was not able to see into his neighbor’s tent, and their privacy was protected. In fact, this is one of the explanations of Balaam’s famous praise of the Jews, Mah tovu ohalecha Yaakov-“How goodly are your tents, O Jacob.” The heathen prophet was extolling the Jews’ virtues in their town planning, whereby they took precautions in safeguarding their modesty and protecting their personal family lives from would-be busybodies and peeping Toms, otherwise known as yentas and nudniks.

Another possible interpretation of “not looking into your neighbor’s tent” might be this: Do not look into your neighbor’s tent to help you decide what you should be doing. Your decisions in life should not be based on what other people are, or are not, doing. Certainly not on what your neighbors have or do not have.

Social workers today will painfully testify that family breakdowns are often a result of financial difficulties and the stress that these put on marriages. Many of those stresses are self-imposed. Their clients confessed that they didn’t really need the new kitchen or the new car, but once their friends were moving up in the status stakes, they felt under pressure to maintain their social standing.

Whether it is the kitchen, car, vacation, or the latest digital technology, if we allow ourselves to be judged by other people’s criteria, we lay ourselves open to a lot of unnecessary stress. Even a simchah (Celebration)-a wedding or bar mitzvah-can get us into “keeping up with the Cohens” mode, from the seven-layered designer invitation hand-delivered to every guest, down to the posh dinner dance replete with chopped-liver sculptures.

Why? All because we are busy looking over our shoulders or peering into the next-door neighbor’s place.

The principle even applies to Charity. There is an appeal for the shul or a Jewish charity, and how do we respond? “Well, if so-and-so, who is a multimillionaire, only gave $10,000, then all I should give is $10!” What difference does it make what someone else gave or didn’t give? You should give what you can, irrespective of what others gave.

How much resentment, bitterness and disappointment we would avoid if we didn’t try to measure ourselves by other people’s standards! We would be much happier people if we looked into ourselves and achieved what we could and should, without drawing comparisons with others.

If you want to enjoy the blessing of “goodly tents,” or even just good housekeeping, keep your eyes and your nose in your own tent. Then you will be content, too.

Shabbat Shalom,
Rabbi Yacov Borenstein

The New Extension to the Chabad Center
chabad house
To view it in full scale, click on image.

If you wish to dedicate or contribute for the New Bais Chabad Center please call the Rabbi for an appointment.
The Rebbe

To learn more about the Rebbe, click on the picture above.

 Candle Lighting Times

 Poughkeepsie, NY   
Shabbat Candles
Friday, June 29

Light Candles at
Shabbat ends at:
Upcoming Events
Shabbat Services 

10:00 AM
followed by a delecious kiddush


Sunday morning services:
Bagels, Lox & Torah
 Service 9:00 AM
Breakfast 9:30 AM
at the Chabad Center
Women’s Torah class:
Torah and Tea
Wednesday January 11
11:00 AM
at the Borenstein’s home
Quick Links
Donate Now
Donate Now
Join Our Mailing List
Mazal Tov
chabad house
If you would like to include a Mazal Tov please call
(845) 463-5801
or e-mail:
Ask The Rabbi
You have a question?

Ask the Rabbi,
or call
(845) 463-5801
This entry was posted in Chabad Lubavitch of Mid-Hudson Valley, Chabad Mid Hudson Valley, Dutchess county, events, Jewish, Mid-Hudson Valley, Poughkeepsie, religious services. Bookmark the permalink.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s