Article Summaries of Editors' Picks

The Torah of a United World
The Zohar
The Zohar says: "How unfortunate are those who only eat the straw instead of the real fruit of Torah..."

Wheat is a mixture of good and evil, chaff and seed – corresponding respectively to sin and holiness. The Zohar is teaching us that using logic alone to understand Torah is like eating straw instead of proper food.
Light Which Transforms - Part 1
The Holy Ari
"When a man takes a wife and engages in marital relations with her..."

There are two types of "lights", or spiritual energies, imparted from a groom to his bride. "Encompassing light" serves as a source of inspiration or protection and is transmitted at betrothal. "Inner light" informs the consciousness of the entity it enters and remakes its possessor's world-view, changing the way the possessor lives his or her life; this is given at the consummation of the marriage.
Brotherly Souls
Mystical Classics
"It shall be that the firstborn which she shall bear shall succeed to the name of his dead brother"

The institution of the levirate marriage discussed in this Torah portion is of great value to the soul of the departed, for the soul of the new infant will replace that of the departed brother. A soul derives added enjoyment when allowed to re-incarnate as a member of the family it had once belonged to.
Soul Redemption
Chasidic Masters
"When you go out to war against your enemies... if you see a beautiful woman amongst the captives and you desire her, then you may take her as a wife."

When Adam and Eve fell and tasted from the forbidden fruit, this caused a number of special souls to be captured by forces of impurity. A tzadik's unexpected desire for a certain beautiful woman captive is an indication that there is a pure soul captive inside her.
Captive Sparks of Divinity
Contemporary Kabbalists
The concept of the captive woman signifies the aspect of our consciousness that has been trapped in worldly materiality. Both the intellect and the emotions must be cleansed of their material orientation in order to be restored to full divine consciousness.
Boundaries for Our Pride
Ascent Lights
"And you should make a fence on your roof"

The Shelah connects the concept of a roof - a high place - to haughtiness, which makes a person feel superior to others. Just as we are instructed to make a boundary around a roof, so, too, we must make a boundary around our pride.
Torah Hassles
Mystic Story
Related Topics

The larger, bold text is the direct translation of the classic text source.

The smaller, plain text is the explanation of the translator/editor.
Text with broken underline will provide a popup explanation when rolled over with a mouse.