Featured Essays

  • How Not To Create A Custom

    How Not To Create A Custom
    By Gil Student
    (2)

    by R. Gil Student Who Creates Jewish Customs? I have a vague recollection from my early years in Solomon Schechter of being taught by a guest teacher how to write a midrash. I do not know precisely what the teacher intended but my perception was that midrash is man-made so any person can make one. If the rabbis of the Talmudic era could weave complex legends surrounding the biblical narrative, so can we. There is a basic logical fallacy in this thinking. It ignores the expertise of the midrashic writer. […]

     
  • Torah and Tefillah

    Torah and Tefillah
    By Aharon Ziegler
    (0)

    Halakhic Positions of Rav Joseph B. Soloveitchik by R. Aharon Ziegler Both Torah study and Tefillah [prayer] rank high in the annals of our religious faith and tradition. As a matter of fact Moshe Rabbeinu points to these two factors as the pivotal aspects of our greatness and uniqueness. In Parashat Va’et’chanan [Devarim 4:7-8] Moshe states: “Which is a great nation that has a G-d Who is close to it, as HaShem, our G-d, whenever we call to Him” [That’s Tefillah]. “And which is a great nation that has righteous […]

     
  • Celebrating Thanksgiving Can Save America

    Celebrating Thanksgiving Can Save America
    By Gil Student
    (4)

    by R. Gil Student Halakhic authorities debate whether celebrating Thanksgiving is permissible. Assuming it is permissible, it is also a good thing. In The Home We Build Together, R. Jonathan Sacks argues that multiculturalism is destroying Western countries. When everyone clings exclusively to their ethnic heritage, there is no common culture to bind all members of the country together. There is no common language that everyone speaks and universally accepted morality that everyone observes. There is no cohesion between social groups. To solve this problem, R. Sacks suggests that we […]

     
  • Vort from the Rav: Vayeitzei

    Vort from the Rav: Vayeitzei
    By Arnold Lustiger
    (1)

    Genesis 28:13 אֱלֹקֵי אַבְרָהָם אָבִיךָ וֵֽאלֹקֵי יִצְחָק the God of Abraham your father, and the God of Isaac. Abraham’s belief in God’s existence solidified when he was forty years of age. Yet God did not reveal Himself to Abraham until He ordered Abraham to enter the land of Canaan, at the age of seventy-five. Imagine the difficulties Abraham faced during that long interim period, as he attempted to defend his newfound faith! His peers surely scoffed at him, derisively inquiring: “Abraham, you say there is a Supreme Being. Have you […]

     
  • Reciting Kiddush when Staking an Ambush

    Reciting Kiddush when Staking an Ambush
    By Yehuda Amital
    (0)

    by Rav Yehuda Amital, zt”l Question: If one is staking an ambush on a Friday night, and he has neither wine nor any desire to eat, is he obligated to eat bread, so that he can recite kiddush and fulfill the mitzva of eating a Shabbat meal, even though he will have to do this in the dark while lying in the ambush? Or is it preferable that he push off kiddush and the meal to the next day? Answer: The Shulchan Arukh writes (OC 274:4): The [Shabbat] morning meal cannot be eaten without bread. And the […]

     
  • Audio Roundup

    Audio Roundup
    By Joel Rich
    (0)

    by Joel Rich On a Cross Currents Open Orthodoxy Post (actually on more personalities) Without adherents, there is no movement. I’d suggest more thought be given to why OO is attractive to adherents at the ground level. If you want to effectively address what you consider inappropriate deviations, it pays to understand the causes before you determine a course of action. I have no data but would suggest at least two hypotheses for study: 1. There is a perceived cognitive dissonance for many in “amcha” between “traditional” torah values and […]

     
 
  • Daily Reyd

    Daily Reyd (1)

    ▪ The Benefits of a Maharat...

     
  • Daily Reyd

    Daily Reyd (8)

    ▪ A Jewish Prayer for Thanksgiving...

     
  • Books Received

    Books Received (0)

    People of the Book: Five Hundred...

     
  • Daily Reyd

    Daily Reyd (2)

    ▪ Gordimer: Don’t Change...

     
 
 
 

Recent Essays

  • How Not To Create A Custom

    Gil Student (2)
    How Not To Create A Custom

    by R. Gil Student Who Creates Jewish Customs? I have a vague recollection from my early years in Solomon Schechter of being...

     
  • Torah and Tefillah

    Aharon Ziegler (0)
    Torah and Tefillah

    Halakhic Positions of Rav Joseph B. Soloveitchik by R. Aharon Ziegler Both Torah study and Tefillah [prayer] rank high in...

     
  • Celebrating Thanksgiving Can Save America

    Gil Student (4)
    Celebrating Thanksgiving Can Save America

    by R. Gil Student Halakhic authorities debate whether celebrating Thanksgiving is permissible. Assuming it is permissible,...

     
  • Vort from the Rav: Vayeitzei

    Arnold Lustiger (1)
    Vort from the Rav: Vayeitzei

    Genesis 28:13 אֱלֹקֵי אַבְרָהָם אָבִיךָ וֵֽאלֹקֵי יִצְחָק the God of Abraham your...

     
  • Reciting Kiddush when Staking an Ambush

    Yehuda Amital (0)
    Reciting Kiddush when Staking an Ambush

    by Rav Yehuda Amital, zt”l Question: If one is staking an ambush on a Friday night, and he has neither wine nor any...

     
  • Audio Roundup

    Joel Rich (0)
    Audio Roundup

    by Joel Rich On a Cross Currents Open Orthodoxy Post (actually on more personalities) Without adherents, there is no movement....

     
  • Books Received

    Gil Student (0)
    Books Received

    People of the Book: Five Hundred Years of the Hebrew Book from the Beginning of Printing to the Twentieth Century by Akiva...

     
  • The Rain/Dew Inconsistency

    Gil Student (2)
    The Rain/Dew Inconsistency

    by R. Gil Student When I worked at the OU, I once received an irate call complaining about a grammatical inconsistency in...

     
  • Dual Aspects of a Human Being

    Aharon Ziegler (1)
    Dual Aspects of a Human Being

    Halakhic Positions of Rav Joseph B. Soloveitchik by R. Aharon Ziegler In our daily morning Berachot we recite the beracha...

     
  • How Does A Tzadik’s Blessing Work?

    Gil Student (1)
    How Does A Tzadik’s Blessing Work?

    by R. Gil Student The blessing of a righteous person has a place of pride in Jewish tradition, even if it is currently taken...