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Gabi Ashkenazi and Faith

Moments after hearing Ashkenazi and an impressive panel of individuals speak, hundreds of people began moving to a hallway and the next session. I walked in one direction, greeted two friends, and then suddenly found myself a few feet away from Gabi Ashkenazi. You have a split second to decide – talk to him or don’t. Say something, or not. In a session where everyone else spoke English, he understood all the discussions, but chose to speak in Hebrew. I did the same.

As NYC Jewish Population Grows, Haredim Deny Abusing the Safety Net

According to a survey of 5,993 individuals conducted by the UJA Federation, the Jewish community in New York City is growing, mainly fueled by an increase in the Orthodox and Chasidic community. The downside is, according to their critics, Welfare is a crucial ingredient in these communities.

This Sunday, Don’t Read the New York Times – Read The Kuzari

Written in the form of a conversation between a Rabbi and a gentile king who is looking to find the true religion, The Kuzari lucidly explains the foundations upon which Judaism is based. What better time than “Book Week” to take another look at this wonderful classic? If you never studied its teachings, you’re missing a building block in your understanding of Judaism which the Gaon of Vilna made top priority for his students.

Alan Dershowitz: Edwards’ Jury Couldn’t Decide and For Good Reason

This entire farce of a trial is part of a larger problem that infects not only America but other Western countries as well: the criminalization of policy differences and of personal sin.

The Man Behind the Curtain

Rabbi Tzvi Yehuda Kook used to refer to Rabbi Yehuda Hazani affectionately as "the assembler of great assemblies." Hazani was one of the people who nurtured Gush Emunim, the grassroots movement that worked to resettle Jews in the territories liberated from Arab occupation in 1967, but always behind the curtain. He was an unknown figure to most of the public, a person who took care to be known only by those who had to know him.

Facebook! Gevalt!

Do you have a teenager who is doing badly in school? Do you have a kid who hates to pray? Does the tiny kippah he wears come off his head the moment he’s down the block? This may be the reason. Nothing desensitizes a person from Torah more than an exposure to porn. Don’t delude yourselves – when it comes to computers, children are geniuses. They know how to navigate through the intricacies of the web like private eyes.

Lockerbie Bomber Dies in Libya

A former Libyan intelligence officer sentenced to life in prison for his role in bombing Pan Am Flight 103 over Lockerbie, Scotland, has died in a Libyan prison. He was 60.

Understanding Post Partum Feelings

Dear Dr. Yael, I gave birth a little over a year ago and, even though it was not my first child, I felt differently this time around. I have always been a happy-go-lucky person, but after having this baby I could not seem to return to my previous self. I was moody, short-tempered and gloomy. While some of these symptoms could have been chalked up to normal baby blues, they persisted and I was becoming scared.

Parshat Behar-Bechukotai

In a famous photo, President John F. Kennedy is seen facing the windows of the Oval Office with his back to the camera. Slightly bent over, with his hands spread out on a credenza, he appears in deep and painful thought. The caption of the picture says it all: “The Loneliest Job.” Only the relatively few people who have been President of the United States truly understand the enormity of the job’s burden. It is for this reason presidents, despite their party affiliation, and often after leaving office, develop close bonds with one another, give the current office holder the benefit of the doubt and make themselves available to whoever may be president at the moment to help and advise.

Everybody’s Doing It

When we are on our own land we are commanded to keep every seventh year as the shemittah year, and at the completion of seven shemittahs to add an additional shemittah year – the yovel. During this year, all land lays fallow. Homesteads return to their original owners, and all Jewish slaves are freed.

JBlog Roundup: Love and Marriage and Hate and Divorce and Blintzes

You want strange news? I'll give you strange news: According to a complaint filed in Federal Court, Nancy Genovese, a mother of three, was arrested...

School Sued for Ignoring Anti-Semitic Taunts

A suburban New York father is suing his school district over the anti-Semitic taunting of his son. Robert Slade filed the suit last week alleging...

New Gifts for New York Hospital-Cornell Bikur Cholim

Students of Moriah Yeshiva of Englewood, NJ put together a Chessed project for children visiting New York Hospital Cornell

Our Calling Card: ‘Baruch Hashem’

B’ezrat Hashem I will continue to share with you my challenging days spent at Scripps Memorial Hospital in San Diego. Whenever difficult days befell me, my revered father would always say “Hashem sends us tests so that we might know how to help others when they have to confront their trials.”

A Jew on Broadway

On a friend’s recommendation, I went to see the Broadway musical Godspell. I found myself watching Jesus get hoisted on a cross by Judas Iscariot, surrounded by an audience with tears and/or rage in their eyes. At that moment, being the only person in the room with a Kippah on his head…made me stand out. But I forced myself to stay. Because I had never experienced this as a Jew.

Proposed ‘Add-Ons’ To Classic Informal Blessing

It seems that from time immemorial, or more specifically from some time after G-d first declared that a person’s days shall be limited to 120 years, at best (Genesis 6:3), Jews have been blessing each other with the wish “May you live to be 120.” I have noticed, however, that many people look at that goal with trepidation, as if it is not necessarily something positive to live for.

Four Questions To Heal The Pain

About a month ago, we began the Passover Seder by asking “the four questions,” which led to a narrative explaining how the Jewish people were freed from Egypt. We are now in the midst of a forty-nine day process of spiritual growth in which we prepare ourselves to receive the Torah.

Yehareg V’al Ya’avor

The following is one unique halacha that is associated with arayos (forbidden relationships): Concerning most aveiros, if one is put in a predicament where he must choose between saving his life and fulfilling a mitzvah he must choose to live and transgress the mitzvah. The Gemara says that arayos are one of the three mitzvos that are yehareg v’al ya’avor (one must allow himself to be killed so as not to transgress the mitzvah), along with murder and avodah zarah.

Daily Midot Program

Our Mission: When it comes to Chesed the Jewish people are at the front of the line. We’ve tackled Chesed and everyone is aware of the unbelievable work and generosity that we are involved in. Now it’s time to take on a new, more difficult challenge: Middot (character trait).

The Hat

I do not dress like the average Orthodox man in my Brooklyn neighborhood. It’s not that I’m trying to make a statement by often going hatless and wearing blue and brown suits, it’s just that in becoming religious I have changed so much - there are certain things I don’t want to give up, especially since my religion doesn’t truly ask me to do so.

When Is A Single Witness Believed?

At the end of parshas Metzora the Torah discusses the halachos of when a woman becomes a niddah. The Torah says that a woman who becomes a niddah must count seven days from when she stops seeing blood, and then becomes tahor by immersing in a mikveh.

The Merit Of Living In Israel

Yaakov Avinu received word that his brother Eisav was coming to greet him. He understood fully well that this was not to be a warm family reunion. Eisav came accompanied by a band of four hundred armed men, bent on revenge. The Torah says Yaakov was “very frightened,” so he prepared for war.

The Wisdom Of Yerushalayim

The inhabitants of Yerushalayim were exceptionally clever. Rabi Chuna said in the name of Rabi Yose, “Wherever this Yerushalmi went in the provinces, they arranged a seat of honor for him to sit upon in order to listen to his wisdom.”

For The Sake Of His Name

When Rabbi Berel Wein began working for the O.U. kashrus division, he shared an office with Rabbi Alexander Rosenberg a’h, the founder of the kashrus division and its administrator for thirty years.

Birthday Parties (Part II) (Keritut 2a, Shabbat 25a, Yevamot 2a and Pesachim 32b)

In addition to karet, there is another type of premature death at the hand of God known as “mita bedei shamayim.”

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