August 22, 2019

Judaism

"...the story of the Jews in post-World War II America is the story, not just of anti-Semitism’s marginalization, but of philo-Semitism’s triumph. "

"The Sabbath Manifesto: a list of 10 principles launched in 2010 by the hip Jewish nonprofit Reboot with the aim of making the meaning of the Sabbath relevant in the contemporary world. "

"The word “Jew” has returned with full force as a mainstream invective in many places in Europe. No adjective is required. For many people, the expression “filthy Jew” is a tautology."

"1 Chronicles 22:8, “But the word of G-d came to me, saying, ‘You have shed much blood and have waged great wars. You shall not build a house to my name, because you have shed so much blood before me on the earth”."

"Why do cases like Ansari’s receive so much attention among many feminists, particularly younger ones, while the most extreme end of the sexual violence spectrum is comparatively ignored?"

"If the New Covenant, through Jesus Christ, meant that Christians were God’s new chosen people, what, then, was to be done about the chosen people of old, the Jews?"

"It's no accident that the artist who built the Tabernacle was the grandson of the man who died trying to prevent the golden calf (Vayakhel)..."

“Their sufferings and homelessness are the just deserts for their crimes.” It is according to this logic that the Jews’ lack of a homeland became a point of Christian doctrine."

"More than half a century ago the pews of Kolkata’s stately synagogues were filled with members of a thriving Indian Jewish community. Today, the congregants are missing—less than two dozen remain..."

"After years of joking, and then not joking, they agreed to do a very particular skillshare: Schonberg would teach Rabins to drum, and Rabins would prepare Schonberg to finally become bat mitzvah at age 40, and to read from the Torah..."

"Tamar Gur Krause is a Reform rabbi with hundreds of marriage ceremonies under her belt; she believes in equality and love and the need for Judaism to develop and adapt to the times, rather than stay stagnant..."

"This is the terrible thing about being a prophet. The sweetness of hearing that silence, that unique sound, and the entirely unpredictable joy of hearing the Lord’s voice can bring prophets to despair if they lose their sense of mission."

"After facing persecution in the former Soviet Union and a new wave of antisemitism in the United States, Marya Zilberberg decides to put her Jewishness on display."

"Yes: I love Poland. How to love a people who supposedly “imbibe anti-Semitism with their mothers’ milk,” in the words of our new foreign minister, Israel Katz?"

"The greatest tragedy is that Spinoza was lost to the Jewish people and Judaism. The rabbis who dealt with him didn’t know how to approach him and his as yet underdeveloped opinions."

"The story of angels stretches all the way back to the opening sections of the Book of Genesis. There, God posts cherubs as sentries at the gates of the Garden of Eden, following Adam and Eve’s expulsion. "

"Biblical scholarship has deepened our understanding of the Torah and at the same time challenges us to consider the implications of our declaring the Torah to be emet. What is emet and what does it mean to say that the Torah is emet?"

"The famous “hole in the sheet” is probably practiced by no more than a small minority, but similarly restrictive methods are not uncommon."

"In his book Revelation and Authority, the Bible scholar Benjamin Sommer seeks to harmonize the tenets of Judaism with the current academic consensus that Jewish Scripture [.] were culled together from a number of disparate sources."

"Even if you were able to erase AIPAC from the picture, it’s not clear how much the landscape would change. Israel is a pretty easy sell in the United States."

"There is no such thing as a Jewish nose. There are Jews, and they have noses, just like almost everyone else. Those noses are in no way remarkable or significantly different from the noses of the general population."

"In the early 20th century, the country was home to a flourishing Jewish community. Now one of the last survivors wants to keep its memory alive."

"At JTA, we are testing our own robot reporter, Bert Cyberg, to help us with the kinds of Jewish stories that essentially write themselves. If he plays his memory cards right, Bert might one day be running this place."

"Kondo’s advice made me worry that many Orthodox Jews would take it on board, because as a community we’re never entirely happy with our homes."

"When it comes to getting married in Israel, you don’t have much of a choice: If you’re Jewish, it’s the Chief Rabbinate’s way or the highway."

"Before the advent of modern medicine it was believed that certain mental illnesses were caused by demonic spirits taking control of the afflicted person’s body. In Jewish folklore these spirits were called dybbuks."

"Nishmat, an advanced institute in Jerusalem for women's Torah study trains halakhic advisers on family purity, while the play"Mikva the Musical" sings its songs and tells its stories. A meeting of the Torah's laws and spirituality, just for women."

"The Torah doesn’t outright end slavery, which was ubiquitous in the ancient world, but it does take the first steps toward ameliorating and transforming it."

"We identifiably Orthodox Jews are punched, swastikered, told we oppress women, we're not 'normal' Jews, that we don't 'fit in.' But when progressives debate Jewish identity and vulnerability – we're invisible"

"As the climactic moment of revelation nears, God instructs Moses to gather together all the people—regardless of age, sex, or status—and convey to them the terms of the covenant; only after they accept these terms does God reveal Himself..."

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JJ Editor's Picks

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"The yield curve’s inverted! The yield curve’s inverted! That was the news I awoke to last Wednesday on CNBC as the 10 year Treasury note yield dipped below the 2 year yield for the first time since 2007. That’s the sign everyone has been waiting..."

"Even a casual observer of the entertainment industry knows that Hollywood is hooked on established intellectual property at the expense of original ideas and awash in more money than it knows how to sensibly spend. But three stories about the..."

"One of the formative texts of the Safed myth, which first portrayed the town as a unique place and which was responsible for spreading word of it all around the Jewish world, is the four letters that Rabbi Solomon Shlumil of Dreznitz sent, in..."

"There are lots of reasons to patent something. The most obvious one is that you’ve come up with a brilliant invention, and you want to protect your idea so that nobody can steal it from you. But that’s just the tip of the patent strategy iceberg..."