Life

Headaches and Head Coverings Part II

August 25, 2015, by

Headaches and Head Coverings received an inordinate amount of attention when we posted it last week. On Torah Musing, the blog where the story was originally posted, the following fascinating exchange took place between  Dr. Tovia Berk, a Headache Medicine Fellow, and the post’s original author, Rabbi Alex Ozar. My name is Tovia Berk – I

The Power of Now

August 13, 2015, by

One of the most famous paradoxes in Judaism, which ties into this week’s Parshat Re’eh, is Hillel’s statement in the first chapter of Ethics of our Fathers: “If I am not for myself then, Who will be for me?” Hillel clearly states that we must be autonomous, independent and not rely on others for our

When Lashon Hora is a Mitzvah

July 21, 2015, by

A while ago—I forget the details—I was telling some people about how a certain person posed a harmful influence. One person objected that this was lashon hara. When I pointed out that it was leto’eles, for public benefit, this person argued that it is still only permissible if the speaker’s motivations are pure. Since my

A Roaring Good Read

June 3, 2015, by

Forget building a buzz around his new book, Rabbi Natan Slifkin is getting a roar. Rabbi Slifkin, author of The Torah Encyclopedia of the Animal Kingdom—Volume One: Chayot/Wild Animals, recently visited Akwaaba Lodge in South Africa to film scenes for his upcoming documentary on the animal kingdom in Jewish thought. The first volume of The Torah

Remembering Rabbi Emanuel Gettinger z”tl

March 12, 2015, by

View the eulogies from Rabbi Gettinger’s levayah: An article in Hamodia remembered Rabbi Gettinger: Rabbi Emanuel Gettinger, z”l, long-time Rav of the Young Israel of the West Side and president of the historic Ezras Torah tzedakah organization, was niftar on Shushan Purim in Chicago. “He was a true gadol b’Torah,” said Rabbi Shlomo Besser, Rav

The Battle For the “Soul” of Israel: Zionism is Not Enough

March 12, 2015, by

A few months ago, a group of soldiers from Unit 8200, one of the IDF’s most elite intelligence units, sent a letter to their commanding officer refusing to be involved in the airstrikes on Gaza. The soldiers claimed that that the tactic was immoral and unethical. The letter, as shocking as it was, reminded me

Rabbi Moshe Elefant Spotlights OU Torah on JM in the AM

October 7, 2014, by

OU Kosher CEO Rabbi Moshe Elefant joined JM in the AM host Nachum Segal to discuss the wealth of information available on OU Torah and how now is the perfect time, if you haven’t done so already, to start learning Daf Yomi. The Daf Cycle began a new seder this week and began tackling Masechet

Counterproductive Poultry

October 1, 2014, by

There is a custom, before Yom Kippur, to swing a live chicken over one’s head while reciting a brief text. The chicken is slaughtered and given to the needy. This is called “kapparos” (atonements). Not everyone does this. Many people – including yours truly – perform the ceremony using cash, which is then donated to

Edible Parsha: Rosh Hashanah Projects

September 23, 2014, by

Shabbat fun for children is given a fresh and tasty twist with Edible Parsha projects. These easy to create, hands-on treats are based within context of weekly Torah portion for children of all ages and stages. Edible Parsha is a creation by Batya Jacob, director of the International Jewish Resource Center for Inclusion and Special

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