Sunday, May 25, 2008

Worth Reading, Number Two: Staying Supple by John Jerome

As you might have guessed, today's book of note is Staying Supple: The Bountiful Pleasures of Stretching by John Jerome. We often recite the words אל תשליחנו לעת זקנה; the author makes a compelling case that a significant part of the aging process is the shrinking of our muscle fibers and the attendant loss of flexibility, mobility, and strength. By stretching the muscles one can reverse that process, making one's quality of life better. As a sedentary computer-bound white-collar twenty-eight year old, I can attest that one doesn't have to be very old to benefit from the ideas and exercises in this book.
This is one of those books that seem intuitively correct when you read it, but you think to yourself, "I would never have thought of that!" Worth reading.

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1 Comments:

Blogger defen said...

I second that. Never read the book cover to cover but enjoyed and appreciated it nevertheless.

26/5/08 11:14 PM  

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Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Emunah U’Bitachon 1:4

The Creator saw that life could not yet reach its potential unless there was a connection between man and his fellow man. A world inhabited by deaf-mutes would have lost all its value, and nothingness would have been better than that! So He made a mechanism that makes various sounds – we call it the mouth. Paralleling the mouth, He made a mechanism that vibrates from every sound, which we call the ear. And through the combination of the mouth and the ear a language by which man can communicate was created – and man became a living being – a speaking spirit¹.

But what advantage does man have – even blessed with speech and hearing – if he is still lacking knowledge? Missing understanding? He is comparable to a beast – like an ox grazing! The Creator's wish was to create man as the wisest in his world and to appoint him as prince over all creation. So the Creator planted the root of wisdom in man's brain and the seedling of knowledge in his heart, so as to be able to understand and become enlightened in everything that exists.

(Note that should there be one who possesses a sharp and incisive mind and would be capable of freeing himself from the wearisomeness of this physical life, to become exalted through his thought above all things – should he look down upon all that are alive in the lower world, he would look upon this concept – wisdom attached to man formed from earth – as a terrible enigma. He would attempt futilely to understand this secret – one that is beyond him.)

Another wondrous thing about wisdom is that although it is not physically bounded – it has no length or breadth, no youth nor age – it changes its physical manifestation in man. When a person is a child his wisdom parallels his development, and it grows with him as he matures. How wondrous are the ways of wisdom and how hidden are the paths of understanding that the chief amongst designers established in man!

1. Bereishis 2:7 and Targum Onkelos

1 Comments:

Blogger Avi Stewart said...

HI Did you translate the 2nd perek yet [the discussiona bout Yosef?]

Can you please email it to me.

thanks,

avis@jsn.info

2/11/09 8:19 PM  

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Sleep Deprivation

Today I attended a seminar about mental health and violence on college campuses. One interesting thing I learned is that sleep deprivation, while not necessarily intrinsically dangerous, can exacerbate or uncover latent mental health issues. Loyal readers of this blog certainly remember this classic post about polyphasic sleep. Warning: Do not attempt a polyphasic schedule if you suffer from mental health issues.

4 Comments:

Anonymous dn said...

Of course, we won't ask why you are attending seminars about mental health and violence on college campuses.

21/5/08 6:56 PM  
Blogger Moshe Y. Gluck said...

I know you won't ask, but I'll tell you anyway: It was in my capacity as part of the administration of a local college.

21/5/08 7:44 PM  
Anonymous dn said...

BMG?

21/5/08 11:58 PM  
Blogger Moshe Y. Gluck said...

Toras Chaim.

22/5/08 12:34 AM  

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Sunday, May 18, 2008

On Lateness

"There's always an excuse for being an hour late, but there's no excuse for being five minutes late." - Albert Roux

1 Comments:

Blogger Michael Kopinsky said...

I am probably maskim, but I am not mekabel.

(As in, it's probably true, but I don't like it.)

21/5/08 1:04 AM  

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Old Fashioned Chillul Shabbos

R' Binyomin Yehuda Miller, in the '30s and '40s a rabbi in Schenectady, New York, once encountered a congregant with a bandaged hand. Inquiring as to the source of this injury, the rabbi was surprised when his congregant said, "No, rabbi, I'm embarrassed to tell you!" The rabbi insisted, and the congregant responded, "Well, rabbi, on Shabbos I was out smoking a cigar, and I noticed you walking up the street. You hadn't yet seen me, but you were about to. I was ashamed to be caught smoking on Shabbos, so I covered the cigar in the palm of my hand, and I held it like that until you passed. So the bandage is from the burn I suffered..."

Chazal said about this story (Berachos 12b): "Rabbah son of Chin'na Sabba said in Rav's name: One who performs a sin and is embarrassed of it is forgiven for all his sins..."

(I heard the story from Rabbi Miller's grandson.)

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Friday, May 16, 2008

Worth Reading, Number One

In what I hope will be a regular feature, I will list books that I feel are worth reading. Also, should some benevolent soul click on the Amazon link and buy the book, I will earn a few cents.
Tonight's book is Change or Die: The Three Keys to Change at Work and in Life. If someone tells you, "If you don't change, you will die!" will you change? Most people wouldn't - at least they wouldn't sustain the change for any significant length of time. I know people like this, and I know the feeling, as well.
The Baalei Mussar struggled with this dilemma - how to get people (themselves and others) to change their behavior for the better, contravening human nature and the inertia that keeps us from improving. Classic Mussar techniques involve harnassing both the intellectual and the emotional aspects of one's personality to effect such change.
This book offers an analysis of the psychology of behavioral inertia, and the three steps necessary for overcoming it and succeeding in creating change that lasts. Worth reading.

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1 Comments:

Anonymous dn said...

Looks fascinating.

Maybe you could translate it into Hebrew, and attribute it to some famous Baal Mussar?

;)

16/5/08 10:58 AM  

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Wednesday, May 14, 2008

Internet Gemach

Many Lakewooders who do not have Internet access use the local library's Internet facilities when they need to buy an item, use MapQuest, or research something. It is, arguably, not a good thing to go to the library, and I know from conversations with library personnel that they find it strange that so many Jews use the Internet post-ban. It's time for an Internet Gemach - where people who need something online can come and look for it, without going to the library. For what it's worth, anyone who needs to look something up can call me and I'll be glad to help. My phone number is in the phonebook (and online, of course), and you can email me if you want my cell phone number.

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5 Comments:

Blogger Rafi G said...

what if theyhave internet, but prefer for you to do the work for them? will you also conduct my searches?

14/5/08 1:50 AM  
Blogger Moshe Y. Gluck said...

Give me a call and we'll talk.

14/5/08 2:03 PM  
Anonymous Yitzhak said...

Your hyperlink of the word 'internet' to the W3C homepage promotes an unfortunate misconception that the internet is equivalent to the world wide web. The former predates the latter by several decades, and even today, a great deal of internet traffic consists of protocols other than HTTP.

15/5/08 7:37 PM  
Blogger Moshe Y. Gluck said...

That's true, but if I had linked to www.darpa.mil, only you would have known what I was referring to. :-)

15/5/08 7:40 PM  
Blogger tznius-lady said...

Should SimchaWear.com be free? It’s not a gemach, but rather a gown portal for everyone to use. I welcome your comments on my http://www.simchawear.com/blog

31/7/08 6:23 PM  

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Sunday, May 11, 2008

Made in Israel

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Friday, May 09, 2008

Sefirah Smiley

2 Comments:

Blogger Rafi G said...

I like it

11/5/08 2:00 AM  
Blogger Mindy said...

Hilarious. Looks prickly. :) I'm fowarding this around. Thanks!

13/5/08 9:03 PM  

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Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Seen in Zichron Yaakov, Take II

1 Comments:

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I saw it in Shomer Shabbos

12/5/08 10:10 PM  

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Monday, May 05, 2008

Seen in Spring Valley

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Seen in Zichron Yaakov



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