Sacrifice and Innocence

Inherent in traditional Jewish thought is a longing for the Holy Temple. Many Jews long for the days when columns of smoke rose from the flames of the altar as devout worshipers brought…

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Aishet Chayil and Esther

On Friday nights it is customary to sing a selection of verses from the final chapter of the Book of Proverbs (31:10-31) known as Aishet Chayil, A Woman of Valor. At this time of year…

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Joy to the Bride and Groom

Have you ever been to a traditional Jewish wedding? At traditional weddings there are, of course, the normal, wonderful things that may be found at all weddings: the beautiful bride and…

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Betty Boop, Popeye and Superman – The Jewish Connection

Name the first talking animated film. The answer most people usually offer is Walt Disney’s Steamboat Willy (1928). In actuality, however, the first talking cartoons were produced by…

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Pre-Chanukah Classes and Workshops on Zoom

Pre-Chanukah Classes and Workshops on ZoomJoin NJOP for these exciting Chanukah prep classes on Zoom! Forward to a friend…

Rashi and The Tosafot Commentaries

One of the most fascinating aspects of Jewish study are the layer upon layer of enlightening and edifying commentaries that can be found when studying texts of the Torah or the Talmud. Of…

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Guard and Remember

The observance of Shabbat is the fourth of the Ten Commandments, listed in both Exodus and Deuteronomy. One would expect to find no difference in the wording of the Ten Commandments…

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Belarus, China, Jerusalem and Brooklyn: The Odyssey of the World’s Largest Yeshiva

For 125 years, from 1814 until 1939, the Mir Yeshiva served as a beacon of elite Torah study on the European continent. Situated in the small town of Mir in Belarus, the yeshiva was…

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A Scholar and a Playwright

As the epicenter of the Renaissance, Italy was filled with great centers of learning and creativity during the middle centuries of the last millennium. In one of these great centers of…

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Gummi Worms, Gelatin and Jews

Today is Gummi Worm Day, celebrating the popular sweet and sour candy, which was created by the German confectionary company, Trolli. Gummy Bears were created in 1922 by another German…

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Moses’ Mysterious and Mortal Maternity

Moses is arguably the central and most important figure in the Hebrew Bible. Maimonides advances that of the 55 Jewish prophets, Moses’ type of prophecy was quite different and far more…

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Iraq and the Jews

Much of ancient and modern Jewish history has passed through Iraq. It can be argued that civilization, as we know it today, actually began in Iraq. The mighty metropolis of Babel or…

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Albania and the Jews

Albania, which today marks its Independence Day, is a small Balkan country with an almost minute Jewish population. While it was never a country with a large Jewish population, there have…

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Students, Teachers, Honor and More

Across the country, students are preparing for the end of the year. Young children happily count the days until there are “no more teachers, no more books,” while older students take to…

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Aishet Chayil and Esther

On Friday nights it is customary to sing a selection of verses from the final chapter of the Book of Proverbs (31:10-31) known as Aishet Chayil, A Woman of Valor. At this time of…

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Rabban Yochanan Ben Zakkai and the City of Yavne

Rabban Yochanan ben Zakkai lived during the tumultuous times when the Jewish residents of Judea rebelled against Rome, and the Romans besieged and then destroyed Jerusalem. At the time,…

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Nice and Simple

It is a fairly well-known fact that there is a traditional Jewish dress code. For many people, that concept - “traditional Jewish dress” - may bring to mind scenes of Fiddler on the Roof;…

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Aishet Chayil and Esther

On Friday nights it is customary to sing a selection of verses from the final chapter of the Book of Proverbs (31:10-31) known as Aishet Chayil, A Woman of Valor. At this time of…

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The Jews of Crete and the Purim of Candia

The  Jewish presence on the Island of Crete is rather ancient, with records of a Jewish community in Crete going as far back as the early Roman Empire. Living under the rule of the…

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Aishet Chayil and Esther

On Friday nights it is customary to sing a selection of verses from the final chapter of the Book of Proverbs (31:10-31) known as Aishet Chayil, A Woman of Valor. At this time of…

Read More

Guard And Remember

The observance of Shabbat is the fourth of the Ten Commandments, listed in both Exodus and Deuteronomy. One would expect to find no difference in the wording of the Ten Commandments from…

Read More

Aishet Chayil and Esther

On Friday nights it is customary to sing a selection of verses from the final chapter of the Book of Proverbs (31:10-31) known as Aishet Chayil, A Woman of Valor. At this time of year…

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A King, a Ghost and a Witch

Across the Western world, children are reveling in the realm of the un-dead, an off-shoot of a distinctly non-Jewish holiday (Halloween). Yet the underlying interest in ghosts, goblins…

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Hallel and Yom Ha’atzma’ut

Is Yom Ha’atzma’ut, Israeli Independence Day, a religious holiday for Jews or a national/secular celebration? This question is at the heart of the debate as to whether one adds the prayer…

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Salt and Hospitality

The region of the Dead Sea (a.k.a. Yam Ha'melach - The Sea of Salt) was once the home of Sodom and Gomorrah, famous for their destruction by fire and brimstone, as recorded in Genesis 19.…

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A Scholar and A Playwright

As the epicenter of the Renaissance, Italy was filled with great centers of learning and creativity during the middle centuries of the last millennium. In one of these great centers of…

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Elijah – Our Passover and Brit Milah Guest

At the Passover seder, those children who are still awake after the meal watch eagerly to see if the prophet Elijah comes to drink from his special cup...(and adults often shake the table…

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Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Torah

Tonight starts the holiday of Shemini Atzeret, literally the Gathering of the Eighth, a separate and independent holiday that immediately follows Sukkot. During the seven days of Sukkot,…

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Belarus, China, Jerusalem and Brooklyn: The Odyssey of the World’s Largest Yeshiva

For 125 years, from 1814 until 1939, the Mir Yeshiva served as a beacon of elite Torah study on the European continent. Situated in the small town of Mir in Belarus, the yeshiva was…

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Carrot and Sweet Potato Tzimmes

TraditionalCarrot and Sweet Potato Tzimmes Ingredients: 1 bunch carrots, peeled and cut into 1″ pieces 6 sweet potatoes…