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Jewish Rituals

Caught in the Mirror of Jewish Texts Before the High Holy Days

Ted Merwin | Posted 09.30.2016 | Religion
Ted Merwin

Yom Kippur came early for me this year. It was one of the last weekends of the summer at Camp Ramah in the Poconos, where my wife serves as educational director. An extraordinarily skilled Bible teacher, Aron Freidenreich, was giving a class for the rabbis, staff and spouses who were up for the weekend.

Are Christians Going Gaga for Judaism?

Ted Merwin | Posted 12.22.2016 | Religion
Ted Merwin

As a Jewish child growing up on Long Island in the 1980s, I was entranced by Christmas. I loved riding the train into Manhattan and gazing at the shop...

Pew Study's Portrait of Jewish Americans Paints Troubling Landscape

Rabbi Hayim Herring, Ph.D. | Posted 02.09.2014 | Religion
Rabbi Hayim Herring, Ph.D.

We live in a hyper-changing present, saturated with expanding choices that clamor for immediate attention. For how long will Jews continue to be passionate about social justice, morality and ethics without the reinforcement of ritual?

Understanding the Art of Shavous

Jonathan Greenstein | Posted 06.15.2013 | Arts
Jonathan Greenstein

Over the centuries, there have been many different ways to decorate the Torah. Like all Judaica, there is no particular style of Jewish art. Jews adapted their decoration to whatever surrounding local style they were living in. Here are some examples.

Counting The Days, Up Or Down: Cancer Patients Count The Omer

Posted 04.08.2013 | Religion

By Benjamin W. Corn Tablet Magazine The mitzvah of Sefirat HaOmer, or counting the Omer -- the 49 days from the second day of Passover until the d...

Sitting Shiva For Traditional Shiva

Rabbi Jason Miller | Posted 03.25.2012 | Religion
Rabbi Jason Miller

It is certainly more convenient to post a quick sentence or two of condolence on the mourner's Facebook Wall, but that shouldn't preclude us from performing the tradition acts of comforting the mourners.

The Neuroscience Of The Bar Mitzvah

William Grassie | Posted 02.09.2012 | Religion
William Grassie

At the Bar Mitzvah, I couldn't help but think that the tribe had done this young man a great service, literally surrounding him with family and friends expressing loving affirmation and setting high expectations for his future.

Kaparot: The Jewish Chicken-Waving Ritual To Absolve Sins (PHOTOS)

Posted 12.05.2011 | Religion

Yom Kippur, the Jewish fast-day of repentance, begins at sundown on Friday (Oct. 7), and some Jews are preparing with ... chickens? The Kaparot rit...

On Passover, Braking For The Holiday Checkpoint

Shira Hirschman Weiss | Posted 06.07.2011 | Religion
Shira Hirschman Weiss

Why do we wait until we're right down to the wire? We're transforming our entire modus operandi to become better individuals. Isn't this something that should be taking place all year round?