Etzion News

An English E-Newsletter for Yeshivat Har Etzion Alumni 
 Nissan 5768


Recent Publications


“Ma Enosh” – Reflections on the Relation between Judaism and Humanism

by Harav Aharon Lichtenstein


At the recent annual dinner of the Yeshiva in New York, a 63-page article by Rosh Hayeshiva Harav Aharon Lichtenstein on Judaism and Humanism was distributed. The Yeshiva would like to thank the Torah U-Madda Journal and its editor, Dr. David Shatz, for their kind permission to reprint this essay, and to Harriet and Heshie Seif for dedicating this publication in honor of Harav Lichtenstein shlit”a.



Commitment and Complexity:
Jewish Wisdom in an Age of Upheaval

by Harav Yehuda Amital


For more than five decades, Harav Amital has imparted his penetrating, clearheaded and inspiring teachings to thousands of students.  Innovative, honest and deeply humane, Harav Amital communicates love of Torah and concern for the Jewish people in all his words and deeds, imbuing them with his deep moral and religious passion. 


This volume distills Harav Amital's thoughts on the critical events and issues of our times.  With acute sensitivity to the moment and a broad historical perspective, Harav Amital's teachings combine youthful vitality and mature wisdom to produce insights of profound relevance and originality.


Now available with a special 20% discount for VBM subscribers:


Moses: Envoy of God, Envoy of his People
by Rav Mosheh Lichtenstein

Moshe, master prophet and teacher, devoted the lion’s share of his career to his role as leader of Israel. This book follows the path of Moshe’s development as a leader from the moment he appears on the scene as a young lad in Egypt until his departing farewell address to his flock. The book details crisis and commitment, frustration and doubt, selfless devotion and identification, along with trust and alienation. All of the relevant episodes, from the first encounter between Moshe and the quarreling slaves to his dealings with the second generations are analyzed and examined, from the perspective of the relationships between the leader and the people. The method of interpretation is based upon a literary analysis of the text that attempts to delve into the inner world of the leader and his interactions with the people. The result is a Midrash oriented approach that creates a fascinating combination of textual analysis and emotional insight.

Special 20% off regular price for VBM subscribers:



Genesis and Jewish Thought

by Rav Chaim Navon


This book explores fundamental philosophical and theological issues arising in the Book of Bereishit. It presents the richness of Jewish thought and notes its uniqueness in comparison with other approaches. Some of the topics addressed include religion and science, commandment and morality, individual and society, faith, guilt, evil and equality.

Special 20% off regular price for VBM subscribers



Abraham’s Journey: Reflections on the Life of the Founding Patriarch

A New Publication by Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik zt”l


Abraham’s Journey is the 9th volume in the series MeOtzar HoRav: Selected Writings of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik zt”l. Avraham Avinu is not only the first Jew, but also a historical prototype, his experiences and actions foreshadowing critical patterns in the history of his people. In addition, Abraham serves as a spiritual and ethical model to his descendants. He is a teacher, a paragon of kindness, a lonely iconoclast, a master of sacrifice, and a knight of faith. Through careful exegesis of verses, illuminating analyses of character, and insightful readings of classical commentators, the essays in this book seek both the eternal and the contemporary messages of the Abraham story.

Edited by David Shatz, Joel B. Wolowelsky and Reuven Ziegler ‘83.

Special 20% discount for VBM subscribers.

To order:



Etzev Nevo

The Death of Moshe Rabbeinu in Midrashei Chazal (Hebrew)

by Prof. Yaakov Blidstein


This book examines the very tragic story in the Torah of the death of Moshe on the east bank of the Jordan prior to the entry into the Land of Israel, through the prism of midrashei Chazal. The various chapters of the book examine the explanations of the midrashim to questions surrounding Moshe's death: Why was Moshe decreed to die? Was it due to a sin, and if so, which sin? From when was his death decreed and did he know in advance? Did Moshe argue with Hashem or plead for his life? When and how did Moshe come to terms with his impending death?  Did Moshe in fact die as other men do? How was Moshe buried and who buried him? The tension between Moshe's uniqueness as a man of G-d and his death representing the end of a mortal life is palpable throughout the book.

Prof. Yaakov Blidstein, Israel Prize Laureate in Machshevet Yisrael (5766), was one of the founders and is a veteran professor of the Goldstein-Goren Jewish Thought Dept. of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev.

The book was launched at a study evening of Herzog College on February 13, with lectures by Rav Mosheh Lichtenstein, Zeev Erlich, Rav Dr. Oded Yisraeli and Prof. Blidstein, which was moderated by Dr. Ezra Kehalani, Assistant Director of Herzog College.


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