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Humility…

In the days and hours before my operation, many of my friends, even strangers that I meet, are asking me for my name and when the operation will be.

Can Women say Kaddish?

I do not see this as a feminist issue at all. This is a human issue.

Famous Last Words

President Barack Obama and former Massachusetts Gov. Mitt Romney are pictured in the Oval Office, Nov. 29, 2012. What does one say on such an...

The Mashgiach Wore a Dress: The Fight over Opening Kosher Supervision to Women

Israel's Chief Rabbinate is yet to give its formal approval to the initiative.

Happy Thanksgiving – 2012

I see nothing wrong with our participating with all American citizens in observing Thanksgiving.

Birth Under Fire with Israel’s Doulas

Israeli doulas have formed a group of volunteers who are offering their services free of charge to the residents of the south.

What Were They Thinking?

Sometimes you just have to wonder, "What were they thinking?" My wife and I speak on marriage-related topics to variant crowds. We know what we're going to say, but we have no idea what the audience may offer. So, when we speak publicly, before we open the floor to comments or questions (which we welcome), we always preface with a cautionary word not to make any personal or disparaging remarks about one's spouse.

Don’t Drink Alone

It occurred to me that with so much of this website being devoted to politics and the Islamist threat, we should probably use some...

Score! Susie Fishbein Strikes Again

Your mother may have taught you how to separate an egg and how to dice a mango, but I am willing to bet your mother never taught you to spatchcock a chicken. No, that is not a typographical error.

Gaming the System

One of the more troubling issues for me about the current right-wing push for all of their students to learn Torah full time for as long as possible (well into their marriage and long after having a number of children to support) is the way in which this is financed. I have long ago expressed my disagreement with this policy as it is currently applied. The idea of directing every single male in all of Jewry into a life of Torah study as the ideal (to the exclusion of any other productive endeavor) is anathema to the very idea of a Jewish nation.

PLO Official Suggests Confederation with Jordan

The official "said he supported the idea of a federation or confederation between the West Bank and Jordan." A confederation has been an Israeli suggestion for decades and now they are finally getting around to discussing it.

Blackout

In Union Square the chess players sit alone under the statue of George Washington waiting for a game. A Latino family, father, mother and son, sit on the sidewalk holding cardboard signs and singing. “I’ll be your friend, when you’re not strong.” The big chain stores are closed but the bodegas are open and Muslim and Chinese storekeepers charge up to ten dollars for a gallon of water. New York City in blackout, in short, is much like New York City as usual.

I Want to have Your Baby, Sarah Silverman

Let's talk about motherhood and babies, and why some young girls start planning their weddings at age 7 and have the albums to show for it.

The Upsherin

Have you ever been to an upsherin, a hair-cutting ceremony? I had never been to one until I was invited by my gentleman friend, Sy, to attend one in honor of his great-grandson, Gabriel, given by his grandparents, Steve and Robin Kerzer. Even Sy, an Orthodox Jew, had not heard of it. Both of us knew it was the custom not to cut a boy’s hair until he was three years old, but we had no idea what was involved.

How To Make Resolutions Into A Habit

There is a long laundry list of personal goals running through my head that I want to work on. I love taking advantage of a celebratory date to select one of these pressing items and promise myself that this time, I really will begin to do whatever it is that will make my life better. Yet, somehow, after the birthday or New Year passes, my fervent declarations are quickly forgotten and I lapse into my old behavior.

Do It Yourself Sukkah Shelf

Way back then, when we put up our Sukkah for the first time, my father-in-law added a shelf along one of the walls. Right away I was struck by how simple and practical this idea was. Years later, people are still commenting about it. So here are the details for the many who have a wood panel Sukkahs. With simple supplies, and minimal “handy man skills” your candlesticks, seforim, bentchers, flowers, etc can “hang around” the entire Yom Tov, and not be moved and removed countless times from being in the way.

Chic Hanging Vases

For many of us, there can never be too many flowers around, so here are some “bright” ideas to add to your Sukkah decoration repertoire.

Language of The Heart: A Conversation With Rabbi Moshe Tzvi Weinberg

Rabbi Moshe Tzvi Weinberg, mashgiach ruchani of Yeshiva University’s SBMP (Irving I Stone Beit Midrash Program) was born and raised in Philadelphia. Rabbi Weinberg currently lives in Bergenfield NJ with his wife and three daughters.

Tishrei: A Time to Examine Your Deeds and Your Portfolio

Spiritual accounting is similar to the financial accounting. In order to be an effective investor, it’s a good idea to sit down once a year with your financial adviser and ask a few questions.

It’s My Opinion: Hurricane Season

The Labor Day weekend and the resumption of school are signals that mark the end of summer in many parts of the United States. Families have one last barbecue. Women put away their white shoes. Everyone anticipates the bright colors of falling leaves and cooler weather.

2016: Effective, Well Done, a Caveat or Two

Dinesh D’Souza’s film, 2016: Obama’s America, is very good at putting the viewer in the milieu of Jakarta or Nairobi, which continue to feel “different” enough to engage the American viewer’s sense of distance and wonder. Conveying the difference of Barack Obama’s childhood and his idea of cultural roots – the difference from American life – is the movie’s most effective accomplishment.

The Greatest Misconception

Focusing on the relations between Israel and the Palestinians turns the conflict inside out. In fact it is driven by the absolute rejection of a Jewish state in the Middle East by all the Muslim nations in the region, which dates back to the beginning of Zionism, before the founding of the state of Israel, before the development of specifically Palestinian nationalism, and long before the 1967 war.

A Paradoxical Relationship

Let’s explain what is usually considered a major paradox: the US provides billions in military aid to Israel, enabling it to keep its enemies at bay. But at the same time its diplomats claim that they don’t know what the capital is, and the major thrust of US policy since 1973 has been to force Israel to withdraw to indefensible boundaries, despite the obvious damage to its security.

Making a Horse Look Like an Elephant

I believe that Partnership Minyanim are sourced in a culture that is foreign to Judaism - the radical feminist ideal of equating the sexes in all areas of life. In Orthodoxy that idea is doomed to failure. The mere fact that women can never be counted towards constituting a Minyan means that equality can never be fully achieved in the sense that feminism requires it. Even if there are a hundred women and 9 men, there is no Minyan.

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