Archive for 'Holidays'

Novel ideas needed for Simchat Torah

Image result for Simchat Torah pictures

Simchat Torah is a relatively new holiday. Nowhere is it mentioned in the Talmud; nor is it mentioned in Maimonides or the Tur Shulchan Aruch. But it is explicitly mentioned in the Zohar,[1] a work that dates back to about 1270—although it is a holiday that probably began many centuries earlier when the Babylonian and Palestinian communities finished reading their Torah cycles. Undoubtedly, just as the conclusion of Talmudic ...

Learn More

Rediscovering the Meaning of Yahrzeit

One of the most important but also neglected customs of the year is when we observe the Yahrzeit of a loved one.  It occurs with such frequency that we often will forget about the date altogether because we may have forgotten the Hebrew calendar date.

According to R. Solomon Freehoff, this circumstance is the principle reason why he thinks a secular date of death may be used lest the actual day of Yahrzeit ...

Learn More

‘Twas the night before Purim …

Haredim Purin Mea  Shearim Santa Claus
My good friend Yochanan Lavie  sent me some time ago one of the best Purim stories that I have read in a long time.
Now, who says the Haredim don’t have a good sense of humor?
========

Posted by Yochanan Lavie on 28.02.10 at 4:18 pm

‘Twas the night before Purim, when all through the shul

Not a creature was stirring, not even a mule;

The stockings were hung by the aron with care,

In ...

Learn More

Why Do We Celebrate Hanukah?– A Potpourri of Judaic Perspectives

One of the famous and most important questions asked about Hanukkah reads: What is Hanukkah? [i.e., “Why do we celebrate Hanukkah?”]. The question strikes a modern reader as odd. Surely, the Jews must have known about the holiday’s significance for several centuries! On the surface, one could argue that the question is purely rhetorical in nature. It serves to help provide the rabbinical teachers with a new interpretation of the famous Maccabean ...

Learn More

The Metaphysics of the Dreidel

I often get asked the questions, “What is the symbolism of the dreidel? What exactly is its origin?” The dreidel is a four cornered top that was popular in the medieval era and originally used for gambling. Jewish folklore purports that when the Syrians prohibited the study of Torah, the Jews insurrectionists would take a top to gamble with, so that the soldiers would let them play their game in peace. The ...

Learn More
Page 1 of 6 12345...»