Nitzavim-Vayeilech 5777-2017

“Inspiring the Next Generation” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In parashat Vayeilech, the second of this week’s double parashiot, Nitzavim-Vayeilech, we read, what is to my mind, one of the…

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Mishpatim 5767-2007

"The Hebrew Maidservant is Alive and Well" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week's parasha, Parashat Misphatim (literally, "laws"), G-d sets much of the structure of Jewish civil…

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Jonas Phillips: Living in the Revolution

A few weeks after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, the British blockade intercepted a communication from Jonas Phillips to a relative on the Dutch Island of St. Estatius.…

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The Babylonian Talmud Completed

Around 200 C.E., Rabbi Judah Ha’Nasi (Judah the Prince) completed his great work of Jewish law, the Mishnah. Although Jewish tradition, for close to 1,500 years, forbade the writing of…

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The Babylonian Talmud Completed

Around the year 200 C.E., Rabbi Judah Ha’Nasi (Judah the Prince) completed editing his great work of Jewish law, the Mishnah. Although Jewish tradition, for close to 1,500 years, forbade…

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Jonas Phillips: Living in the Revolution

A few weeks after the signing of the Declaration of Independence, the British blockade intercepted a communication from Jonas Phillips to a relative on the Dutch Island of St.…

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Duties of the Heart

The concept of “being spiritual” is often assumed to be a fairly recent one, resulting, perhaps, from the enlightenment’s deconstruction of organized religion.  The idea of…

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Anomalies and Interpretations

The writing of a Torah scroll is an incredibly intricate process. To write a Torah, the scribe must not only be meticulous and devout, but must know all of the many laws associated with…

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In Tune

Can you read Jewish music? No, not the sheet music to Fiddler on the Roof or Havah Nagillah. Trope, the musical cantillation used by Torah readers to sing-chant the holy…

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Treating Holy Papers

One modern philosophy that might have caught your attention is conscientious living. This concept centers on increasing one’s awareness. In many ways, living according to Jewish law…

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A Lost Language of Scholarship

When most people think about Jewish language they think of Hebrew or Yiddish, and sometimes of Ladino. In honor of UN Arabic Language Day, Jewish Treats would like to recognize the…

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I’m a Poet and I Don’t Know It!

August 21 is annually celebrated as Poet’s Day (not to be confused with Poets Day, which is celebrated weekly, on Fridays in Great Britain, similar to TGIF). Poet’s Day was initiated on…

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Duties of the Heart

The concept of “being spiritual” is often assumed to be a fairly recent one, resulting, perhaps, from the enlightenment’s deconstruction of organized religion.  The idea of…

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“The Splendor”

While the study of Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) has always been a part of Torah study, it only gained public prominence in the early 14th century when a Spanish rabbi, Moses de Leon,…

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A Treat For World Philosophy Day

Philosophy is defined by dictionary.com as "the rational investigation of the truths and principles of being, knowledge or conduct." Judaism, being a religion, is a system of living…

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The Missing Hero

According to a hand written document shared by the Soviet Union in 1957, Raoul Wallenberg died of heart problems in his cell on July 17, 1947. By the time the document was released, both…

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“Thou Shalt Not Anoint”

The observance of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, calls for abstention from five activities: eating/drinking, anointing, washing oneself, wearing leather shoes and marital relations.…

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Thou Shalt Not Anoint

The observance of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, calls for abstention from five activities: eating/drinking, anointing, washing oneself, wearing leather shoes and marital…

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Thou Shalt Not Anoint?

The observance of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, calls for abstention from five activities: eating, drinking, anointing/washing oneself, wearing leather shoes and marital relations.…

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“The Splendor”

While the study of Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) has always been a part of Torah study, it only gained public prominence in the early 14th century when a Spanish rabbi, Moses de Leon,…

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Appointing Justice

According to Jewish tradition, God created the world employing the attributes of both rachamim (mercy) and din (justice). Since God is constantly renewing the act of creation, it is with…

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Zmirot (Songs of Shabbat)

Singing zmirot, songs of Shabbat, on Friday night not only expresses joy for the gift of Shabbat, but also offers praise to God. While many of…

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“The Splendor”

While the study of Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) has always been a part of Torah study, it only gained public prominence in the early 14th century when a Spanish rabbi, Moses de Leon,…

Read More

Zmirot (Songs of Shabbat)

Singing zmirot, songs of Shabbat, on Friday night not only expresses joy for the gift of Shabbat, but also offers praise to God. While many of the zmirot specifically speak of the beauty…

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“The Splendor”

While the study of Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) has always been a part of Torah study, it only gained public prominence in the early 14th century when a Spanish rabbi, Moses de Leon,…

Read More

In Tune

Can you read Jewish music? No, not the sheet music to Fiddler on the Roof or Havah Nagillah. Trope, the musical cantillation used by Torah readers to sing-chant the holy words, is a…

Read More

Thou Shalt Not Anoint

The observance of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, calls for abstention from five activities: eating/drinking, anointing, washing oneself, wearing leather shoes and marital relations.…

Read More

Eikev 5761-2001

"The Intermarriage Conundrum" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald The opening verses of this week's parasha, parashat Eikev, conclude the theme that was the focus of the final part of last…

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Emor 5769-2009

"The Highest Mitzvah of All!" by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week's parasha, parashat Emor, the Torah delineates the strict rules for maintaining the absolute purity of the…

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Vayeira 5772-2011

“Were Lot’s Daughters Moral or Immoral?” by Rabbi Ephraim Z. Buchwald In this week’s parasha, parashat Vayeira, Abraham famously bargains with G-d in order to save the cities of Sodom and…

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