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Moses, Stage Fright…

…and a CONVERSATION  with NECHAMA LEIBOWITZ  Fifty-nine years ago, for my Bar Mitzva, I chanted the Torah portion called “Va’era” (“And I appeared…,” Exodus 6:2-9:35) that we read this past Shabbat (1.1.22). It begins with a prelude to the 10 plagues. For the second time, Moses tries to convince God that he isn’t fit for…Continue readingMoses, Stage Fright…

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Hebrew Language Day

HEBREW LANGUAGE DAY!! YOM HaLASHON HaIVRIT – יום הלשון העברית Time to Celebrate! In 2012 the Government of Israel formally declared the 21st of the month of Tevet as “Hebrew Language Day.” Since this year the 21st falls on Shabbat, the public observance of the day has been brought forward to Thursday, December 22, 2021.…Continue readingHebrew Language Day

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The First Cliffhanger

Saturday night, December 4, 2021 In the Jewish Tradition we read a portion of the Torah every week on Shabbat (Saturday) morning, completing the Five Books of Moses each year. The weekly portions were established prior to the division of the Hebrew Bible into chapters (which was developed by Christian clergy in the 13th century).…Continue readingThe First Cliffhanger

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THE MENORAH… OR THE MAGEN DAVID (JEWISH STAR)

WHICH IS THE PARAMOUNT JEWISH SYMBOL? Would you like to learn something new? Watch the free video (link below) for a unique and (I hope) fascinating virtual seminar. For hundreds of years the MENORAH (מְנוֹרָה – candelabra) and MA-GEN DAVID (מָגֵן דָּוִד – Shield of David or “Jewish Star”) have represented Judaism and the Jewish…Continue readingTHE MENORAH… OR THE MAGEN DAVID (JEWISH STAR)

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Videos Virtual Tours

IsraCLIPS

IsraCLIPS: brief virtual tours of sites in Israel. See the first installment: A discovery from 2600 years ago! and a Second Temple Period (1st Century CE) Burial Cave I’ve also posted A Virtual Tour of Jerusalem: The City Lines: 1948-1967-Today. Please check out my YouTube channel here.Continue readingIsraCLIPS

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Music

She Wrote Our Song

On a warm summer evening on June 26, 2004, corresponding to the 7th day of the Hebrew month of Tammuz, Naomi Shemer parted from this world. She left us a legacy of hundreds of songs most of which were both written and composed by her, others were melodies that she composed for poems that were…Continue readingShe Wrote Our Song

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Media Torah Portion

Grasshopppers or Grapes: Plan your Trip to Israel Now

Please READ and SHARE. So here’s what’s behind the strange title. The lead story of the weekly Torah portion – “Shelah Lekha” (Numbers 13-15) – which we will read on Shabbat, June 5,  is about the Twelve Spies (one from each tribe) who, at God’s command, are sent from the desert by Moses to scout the…Continue readingGrasshopppers or Grapes: Plan your Trip to Israel Now

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Media

The Other “Home Front”

וַיֹּ֨אמֶר אַבְרָ֜ם אֶל־ל֗וֹט אַל־נָ֨א תְהִ֤י מְרִיבָה֙ בֵּינִ֣י וּבֵינֶ֔יךָ …כִּֽי־אֲנָשִׁ֥ים אַחִ֖ים אֲנָֽחְנוּ׃ …فقال ابرام للوط لا تكن مخاصمة بيني وبينك …. لاننا نحن اخوان ‘Abram said to Lot, “Let there be no strife between you and me…for we are kinsmen…’(Genesis 13:8) While most of the news media and social media have focused on the conflict between…Continue readingThe Other “Home Front”

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Media Torah Portion

Proverbs and Israeli PR

In studying the book of Proverbs (Ch. 26 – today’s chapter of the daily Tanakh/Bible study program called “929” – the number of chapters in the Hebrew Bible), I came across two consecutive, contradictory verses (vs. 4-5) that are most apt for responding – or not responding – to anti-Israel and anti-Zionist media: אַל־תַּ֣עַן כְּ֭סִיל…Continue readingProverbs and Israeli PR

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Literature Personalities

Occupy Oneself with Jerusalem

In honor of Jerusalem Day, following is one of my favorite quotations of S.Y. Agnon, who was awarded the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1966, from the collection of his short stories “Within the Walls”, (the Hebrew follows the English translation; I take responsibility for the latter): There are places in Jerusalem that are familiar…Continue readingOccupy Oneself with Jerusalem