Where Judaism is a way of life!
Bring Moshiach – Do A Mitzvah
Almaden Valley Torah Center
Here, we encourage the doing of Mitzvos. Ten of them were selected by the Lubavitcher Rebbe to focus on, to add meaning to your life.
Click here if you think this “stuff” is too old fashioned.
Ahavas Yisrael - The love of one's fellow Jew
Hillel, (one of the greatest sages of the Mishna), explained, that the love for ones fellow man, is the basis of the Torah and therefore of a Jewish life. So patience, love, a real concern and sensitivity for the well-being of ones fellow is one of the greatest Mitzvahs a Jew can do. In fact, baseless hatred was the cause of the Destruction of the Temples. For the third Temple to be rebuilt, random acts of goodness and kindness are the order of the day!
The donning of Tefillin, every weekday, by males over the age of 13.
The Torah describes Tefillin as a sign, a public statement of Jewish involvement. By donning
Tefillin daily, an individual gives expression to his basic feeling of Jewish identity, and its importance to him.
The Tefillin are placed on the arm facing the heart, and on the head. This signifies the binding of one's emotional and intellectual powers to the service of G-d. The straps, stretching from the arm to the hand and from the head to the legs, signify the transmission of intellectual and emotional energy to the hands and feet, symbolizing deed and action.
Mezuzah - The Jewish Sign
A Mezuzah designates a house, or room as Jewish. It is a clear sign of the nature of the environment. The Mezuzah should be on the right doorpost of every room. The Divine name S-H-A-D-A-I on the outside
of each Mezuzah, is explained by our Sages to also signify that the Al-mighty is "Guardian of the Doorways
of Israel." The Mezuzah protects the home and its occupants.
In a Mezuzah, IT'S WHAT'S IN THE INSIDE THAT COUNTS. You have to have a parchment (not paper) with the first two paragraphs of the Shema written by a Sofer (professional scribe).
Unfortunately, many printed or improperly written Mezuzahs flooded the public market.
In addition, many Mezuzahs that were originally proper, may have since faded or cracked due to age or weather. Contact us to either check your Mezuzahs or get new ones.
Tzedakah - Giving charity every weekday
Tzedakah, though commonly translated as charity, literally means correct or righteous.
You give out of a sense of responsibility and in the realization that what YOU have is also a gift-charity from G-d.
The amount is not what matters as much as is an increase in giving daily.
Displaying a Tzedakah Box conspicuously serves as a reminder to give OFTEN every weekday.
Every Jewish child is encouraged to be enrolled in an educational program that will teach him/her what it means to live as a Jew. Likewise, adults are encouraged to enroll in classes and seminars regardless of their background and knowledge.
Rabbi Schneur Zalman of Liadi, the founder of the Chabad-Lubavitch Movement explained, that Torah study should be fixed not only in time, but also in soul, i.e., that it should be the vortex around which the entire spectrum of everyday life revolves.
Torah study is the privilege of finite man to comprehend the wisdom of an infinite G-d. The keeping of fixed times for Torah study even starting off with a few lines a day allows for systematic growth and development.
Possession of Jewish Holy Books
An environment teaches. What you have in your home helps determine what type of home you will have.
By having Jewish Holy Books conspicuously displayed at home, you as well as your friends, will be stimulated to use them. Their very presence reminds one of their contents and the importance of Jewish values.
Of course, the more books the better. However, the minimum of a Chumash (the Five Books of Moses), a Book of Psalms and a Siddur (Prayer Book) are suggested.
Lighting Shabbos and Festival Candles
Light is a subject which has stirred the imagination of poets, scientists and psychologists. Because its nature is so different from other material entities, it is frequently used to describe spiritual insight.
Shabbos is a day of light; a day with a different pattern and value-orientation.
The lighting of the Shabbos Candles, ushers and inspires in this state of awareness.
The responsibility for lighting the candles and inducing this change of perspective is the woman's. It is she who welcomes the Shabbos Queen into the home.
Young girls from the age of three are also encouraged to light their own candle, both as a means of involvement and as part of their education.
The Shabbos Candles are lit 18 minutes before sunset of Friday Eve. For S. Jose times, please click to the first page.
Kashrus - The Jewish Dietary Laws
Eating kosher food serves to bring home on a very basic and fundamental level, an identification with one's Jewishness.
As long as Jewish involvement is limited to prayer, study, or even specific ritual acts, there is no proof that it has permeated one's self.
When you eat differently, your Judaism is not just metaphysical, but a part and parcel of your very being.
The observance of Kashrus consists of eating only kosher foods at home or away from home. It also entails not eating dairy and meat foods together, and maintaining separate dishes, cutlery, and utensils for meat and dairy.
Taharas Hamishpachah - The Torah perspective on married life
Marriage and sexuality are treated very carefully by the Jewish tradition.
It is no coincidence that in Torah-conscious homes the divorce rate is much lower than the national average.
Taharas Hamishpachah, the attitudes and practices for happy married life help to develop genuine communication and love between husband and wife and bring to the world healthy, loving children.
The detailed laws of Taharas Hamishpachah require much explanation. Ask the Rabbi for more details.