Featured Essays

  • The Sin and Punishment of the Tower of Bavel

    The Sin and Punishment of the Tower of Bavel
    By Elchanan Samet
    (0)

    “And Man’s Loftiness Will be Bowed:”(( Yeshayahu 2:17.)) The Sin and Punishment of the Tower of Bavel by Rav Elchanan Samet On the surface, the brief episode of the Tower of Bavel (Bereishit 11:1-9) appears to be a story of sin and its punishment. However, what is the nature of this sin, and where exactly is it described in the narrative? These are not easy questions. Bereishit Rabba notes (38:10), “The deed of the Generation of the Flood is explicated, but the deed of the Generation of the Dispersal is […]

     
  • The 9/11 Memorial and Jewish Law

    The 9/11 Memorial and Jewish Law
    By Gil Student
    (1)

    by R. Gil Student As a New York resident who worked in Manhattan on September 11, 2001, I will forever be haunted by the tragic day and its aftermath. However, visitors and future generations, including my own children, need more than personal memories. The 9/11 memorial and museum are intended to provide that. A recent article in First Things by Catesby Leigh, an architecture and art critic, excoriates the National September 11 Memorial & Museum. I am hardly an architecture or art critic and I have not even visited the […]

     
  • Audio Roundup

    Audio Roundup
    By Joel Rich
    (0)

    by Joel Rich Shulchan Aruch Chapter 607: 6. ….. Yom Kippur only forgives the transgressions that one sincerely atoned for. But if one prayed on Yom Kippur but thought in his heart “what good is this?”, Yom Kippur does not atone for him. Irony for social orthodoxy? The atonement doesn’t work, but why would they care? I’d like to hear from anyone whose shul actively seeks objective input on its functions (e.g. survey re adult ed, rabbi…). How do you do it? Rav Mayer Twersky-Do we Really Believe? Are We […]

     
  • A Matter of Pride

    A Matter of Pride
    By Aron White
    (1)

    by Aron White Torah study has been a fundamental part of Judaism for a long time. However, there is one element of it which can be found throughout classical Jewish sources right up until the previous century, which I believe has eroded greatly in the past fifty years. This element is the idea of pride in Torah and Talmidei Chachamim. In order to explain any change in religious psyche, it is incumbent to provide the model against which I am comparing us. The Harvard sociologists Mark Zborowski and Elizabeth Herzog […]

     
  • Speaking With Satan

    Speaking With Satan
    By Gil Student
    (0)

    by R. Gil Student God is just, merciful and fair. Why, then, are we told that saying something bad–opening our mouths to Satan–can cause bad things to happen? Why should a just God punish us for discussing a negative possibility? The Talmud raises this issue in three places but does not explain the theological mechanisms by which it operates. I’d like to explore approaches from mystical, rationalist and moralistic perspectives. I. Don’t Say This A mourner is required to justify God’s judgment, to say “tziduk ha-din.” The Talmud (Berakhos 19a) […]

     
  • Vort from the Rav: Bereishis

    Vort from the Rav: Bereishis
    By Arnold Lustiger
    (0)

    Genesis 4:6 וְכִי תַאֲוָה הוּא לָעֵינַיִם וְנֶחְמָד הָעֵץ לְהַשְׂכִּיל and that it was a desire to the eyes, and the tree was attractive to look at. The Tree of Knowledge is described in purely esthetic categories: 1) תַאֲוָה – the moment of lust, invincible, hypnotic desire that spells ethical atrophy and indifference; 2) נֶחְמָד – in the sense of attractiveness and fascination: esthetic tension brought about by the experience of beauty (Le-haskil) therefore in this context denotes to the eye. Onkelos translates לְהַשְׂכִּיל as לְאִסתַּכָָּלָא בֵּיה (“to look at”). David […]

     
 
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    ▪ RABBINICAL COUNCIL OF AMERICA...

     
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    ▪ I recognize a lot of similarities...

     
  • Books Received

    Books Received (0)

    A Guide to the Complex: Contemporary...

     
 
 
 

Recent Essays

  • The Sin and Punishment of the Tower of Bavel

    Elchanan Samet (0)
    The Sin and Punishment of the Tower of Bavel

    “And Man’s Loftiness Will be Bowed:”(( Yeshayahu 2:17.)) The Sin and Punishment of the Tower of Bavel by...

     
  • The 9/11 Memorial and Jewish Law

    Gil Student (1)
    The 9/11 Memorial and Jewish Law

    by R. Gil Student As a New York resident who worked in Manhattan on September 11, 2001, I will forever be haunted by the...

     
  • Audio Roundup

    Joel Rich (0)
    Audio Roundup

    by Joel Rich Shulchan Aruch Chapter 607: 6. ….. Yom Kippur only forgives the transgressions that one sincerely atoned for....

     
  • A Matter of Pride

    Aron White (1)
    A Matter of Pride

    by Aron White Torah study has been a fundamental part of Judaism for a long time. However, there is one element of it which...

     
  • Speaking With Satan

    Gil Student (0)
    Speaking With Satan

    by R. Gil Student God is just, merciful and fair. Why, then, are we told that saying something bad–opening our mouths...

     
  • Vort from the Rav: Bereishis

    Arnold Lustiger (0)
    Vort from the Rav: Bereishis

    Genesis 4:6 וְכִי תַאֲוָה הוּא לָעֵינַיִם וְנֶחְמָד הָעֵץ לְהַשְׂכִּיל and...

     
  • Books Received

    Gil Student (0)
    Books Received

    A Guide to the Complex: Contemporary Halakhic Debates by R. Shlomo M. Brody (Maggid) ...

     
  • How and Why Should One Rejoice On the Festivals?

    Chaim Navon (0)
    How and Why Should One Rejoice On the Festivals?

    by Rav Chaim Navon Limits to the Mitzva of Rejoicing Elsewhere, we noted that the mitzva of rejoicing on a festival is exceptional,...

     
  • Audio Roundup

    Joel Rich (2)
    Audio Roundup

    by Joel Rich Laws Borel’s Law – “Events with a sufficiently small probability never occur” Stigler’s Law – “No...

     
  • Women Dancing With Torah Scrolls

    Gil Student (3)
    Women Dancing With Torah Scrolls

    by R. Gil Student I don’t like dancing, not on Simchas Torah nor at bar mitvahs nor even at my wedding. It’s...