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Israel Rocks Shushan Purim in Jerusalem and Walled Cities!

During the day expect to see LOTS of costumes and happy faces in Jerusalem, especially around Safra Square, the biggest Purim street fair in the country.

Diapora Yeshiva T’shuva Movement Pioneer Rabbi Mordechai Goldstein Dead at 82

Unlike traditional Orthodox academies, Rabbi Goldstein's Diaspora Yeshiva appealed to students who identified with the nonconformist beatnik and hippie subcultures, adopting a neo-Chasidic approach.

Maj. Gen. Mordechai to World Vision: ‘Assume Responsibility and Set your House in Order’

But World Vision Australia chief executive Tim Costello said he was “mystified” by the charges, because independent audits had found the charity's programs in Palestine were "clean."

The Origins of Purim

There are many questions surrounding Purim, here are a few answers....

Was Mordechai Crazy? A Torah Thought for Purim

Just like Moses and Aaron, Mordechai decides to ruin the party…

The Capacity to Change

Esther's name, which means “hidden,” reminds us that at the outset she hides her Jewish identity.

Those Jerusalem Views, Always Changing

It doesn't matter how many apartments are built. Housing prices still go up in Jerusalem.

Vacationing Tip: Get Lost

If you’re looking to get away from the irritations of technology and people in your way, the best place to go is Lancaster County, Pennsylvania.

Zechut Avot : An Eternal Birthright

The first time was many years ago. I had just concluded explanations about Yeshivat Knesset Yisrael” which arrived in Hebron from Slobodka, in Lithuania...

Why Most Marriages Can Work

Mordechai, 36, and Chani, 35, were married for six years and came to me for advice on how to save their relationship. They seemed to have everything going for them. They were working professionals, successful and upwardly mobile; they shared many common factors including similar religious beliefs, intelligence levels, and were both pleasantly extroverted.

Awkward Timing

Welcome once again to “You’re Asking Me?” where we answer any and all questions sent in by readers. It’s a lot like all the other “ask the expert” columns, except that, whereas the other experts are interested in giving you a well-researched answer, our interest is more in meeting our deadlines so we can get back to looking for our car keys. Most of the time, we tackle advice questions, but once in a while we have to take a break from those, because of the lawsuits.

The Claim Of The Daughters Of Tzelaphchad

The Gemara in Baba Basra 119b relays the following conversation that took place in this week’s parshah: Moshe Rabbeinu was teaching the halachos of yibum when the daughters of Tzelaphchad approached him with the following question: Our father died in the midbar and did not have any sons. Why then is our mother not required to fulfill the obligation of yibum? And if the fact that he had daughters is the reason that she is not obligated to fulfill this requirement, why then can we (his daughters) not receive an inheritance – just like sons would?

A Little Gallows Humor

Achashveiros of Poras, Beset by domestic tzoras, Got a quickie fivoras... But being single again just wasn’t the same.

Yoram Ettinger: Purim Guide for the Perplexed 2012

Purim is the holiday of contradictions and tenacity-driven-optimism: Grief replaced by joy; Esther's concealment replaced by the disclosure of her national/religious identity; Haman's intended genocide of the Jews replaced by redemption; Haman replaced by Mordechai; national and personal pessimism replaced by optimism.

The Megillah: How-To Manual on Defeating Anti-Semites

Israel must demonstrate confidence in ourselves and an iron determination to defy our antagonists. Mordechai teaches that it is not through appeasement that one achieves peace but rather through strength, self-assurance and unequivocally firm resistance to tyranny and injustice.

Inside Purim: Even More Fascinating And Intriguing Insights On Purim And The Megillah

These are excerpts from the sefer “Inside Purim” which contains additional answers to the following questions and much more.

Bully To You, Haman

Purim is just a few days away, and Jews young and old are gearing up to celebrate this most festive of holidays, during which all will eat, drink and nosh merrily and in great relief over our come-up-from-behind triumph against a vicious Jew hater whose goal was to annihilate the Jewish people, but who instead had the tables turned against him in a dramatic and unforeseen manner. Sadly, bullying is alive and well in the 21st century afflicting all societies and the individuals that comprise them. For those who think that our heimishe communities have been spared the scourge of bullying - it's time to get their head out of the cholent.

Understanding The Mitzvah Of Megillah

To properly fulfill the mitzvah of listening to the megillah, each word must be heard. If a word is missed, the listener should read it quietly to himself from the text in his hand. The principal purpose of reciting the megillah is to publicize the miracle of Purim. Accordingly, many poskim permit the megillah to be read in English if the reader does not understand Hebrew.

Drinking on Purim: Holy or Wholly Irresponsible?

The word the Gemara uses to get drunk on wine is “l’besumai,” literally - to become fragrant. Not stinking drunk, but rather like the incense in the Holy Temple; a sweet smelling aroma.

Leftovers Exchange Program

Welcome to “You’re Asking Me?” where we answer any and all questions -- not necessarily in the hopes that we can make your issues go away by waving a newspaper at them, but more in the hopes that if we make enough jokes, you’ll forget what your problem was, unless you reread the beginning of the article, where we helpfully put your problems in bold face.

‘Getting’ Purim This Year

Although most of us are now focused on Pesach and rolling up our sleeves - both physically and mentally - we need to keep close to our hearts a wrenching message that was brought to the fore this particular Purim. For me and many other Jews, Purim was not "business as usual" in terms of having great fun, merrymaking and partying. Our joy was deeply tempered by the haunting images of the murdered Fogel family - a young mother, father, and three of their six children, including a three-month old infant girl - who were ruthlessly slaughtered as they slept, by Palestinian descendants of Amalek.

Title: The Queen You Thought You Knew: Unmasking Esther’s Hidden Story

Rabbi David Fohrman of the Hoffberger Institute for Torah Study is an engaging speaker and astonishing interpreter of Torah texts, captivating his devoted listeners and readers for decades. The Queen You Thought You Knew: Unmasking Esther's Hidden Story is his most recent publication, unrolling the Megillah with the excitement of a blockbuster.

Siona Benjamin’s Megillas Esther

There is nothing funny about Siona Benjamin's Megillas Esther (2010). Unlike some contemporary illuminated megillas that emphasize the absurd and outlandish nature of the corrupt Persian court and the buffoonish character of the king, Benjamin takes the Book of Esther quite seriously. She is obviously deeply sensitive to the terrible consequences of God's hester panim (hidden face) in our own time.

Purim And The Blessing Of Unity

Klal Yisrael. All of Israel. One people. One community. One.

Title: Purim and the Persian Empire: A Historical, Archaeological & Geographical Perspective

Feldheim's motto, "Torah Literature of Quality," is well-suited to Purim and the Persian Empire: A Historical, Archaeological & Geographical Perspective. Written by Yeshivat Itri graduate Rabbi Yehuda Landy, this magnum opus is wonderfully prepared, informative and valuable to a wide range of readers. Landy teaches at Yeshivat Ohr Yerushalayim and is a certified tour guide in Israel. His credentials served his research efforts well.

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