Category: Religion

shutterstock_220973980.0

Addressing Dishonesty

There are some writers whom you imagine will disagree in an appropriate and logical fashion, without straw men and without inspiring people to mock words of our greatest teachers. And sometimes you will be disappointed.

Mendy Pellin - Talk Yiddish to Me 1

Lessons of a Viral Video

The Orthodox video that went viral last week dispels a lot of stereotypes about the Orthodox world and is frankly inspirational… but you won’t see that in any of the coverage.

Kippot

Ferry Tale

Sitting among other commuters in the cavernous terminal, waiting for the next ferry from Staten Island to Manhattan, I sensed some commotion in my periphery. Looking up from my reading,...

3874922926_a80521383f_b

Liberation Theology

In the summer of 1776, Benjamin Franklin proposed that the Great Seal of the United States should depict Moshe Rabbeinu at the Yam Suf, his staff lifted high and the...

maxresdefault

Routing Rote

“Please don’t bring your toys into my kitchen, young lady!” the busy mother warned her loaded-up little daughter. The child’s response: “Well, it’s MY kitchen too!” Her parents had a...

birkatkohanim 7

Political Posturing at the Western Wall

Women of the Wall plans to show preference to some women over others in a way unsupported by any version of Judaism, doing a “Jewish” ritual supported by no version of Jewish ritual, in imitation of a ceremony that aims to restore Judaism’s doubly undemocratic Holy Temple. And it claims to be doing all this in the name of egalitarianism.

leohau / Pixabay

The Evidence in the Barrel

Back in a previous lifetime, when I was a mesivta rebbe, I once heard a menahel exhort our talmidim to not get carried away on Purim. As an illustration, he...

ResoneTIC / Pixabay

Golden Silence

The mother was understandably concerned. Her first-grader was a sociable, talkative little girl, and so her teacher’s phone call was certainly disturbing. This is a true story and took place...

babyboom 29

Why Seminary Still Makes Sense

In a recent piece on Matzav.com, Rabbi Yitschak Rudomin discusses “Sending Girls to Seminaries and the Shidduch Crisis” and asks: “who are the American boys supposed to marry at 21 if...

erase

Error Message

Is it permissible to drink water on Shabbos? Yes, the question is facetious. But not pointless. Because the parshiyos of this time of year, which deal with the construction of...

Vegie_buffet

The American Jewish Buffet

“Secular Orthodox.” That’s how Avinoam Bar-Yosef, president of the Jewish People Policy Planning Institute, recently characterized many Israelis. What he meant was that, while an Israeli may not be observant...

A member of "Women of the Wall" group (2nd R) wears a prayer shawl and Tefillin, leather straps and boxes containing sacred parchments, that Orthodox law says only men should don, during a monthly prayer session at the Western Wall in Jerusalem's Old City May 10, 2013. An Israeli police spokesman said on Friday that five ultra-Orthodox Jewish men were detained during a protest against the group. Last month the Jerusalem District Court said that the women should not be arrested for wearing prayer shawls at the site. REUTERS/Amir Cohen (JERUSALEM - Tags: RELIGION) - RTXZH7M

Western Walls

Many are celebrating the official setting aside and expansion of a part of the Kotel Maaravi for non-traditional public prayer. I’m not among them. My thoughts on the matter are...

258817 / Pixabay

Illogical Leadership

“Because you were convincing me,” was the woman’s straightforward reply. Her questioner was my rebbe, Rav Yaakov Weinberg, zt”l, then the Rosh Yeshivah of Yeshivas Ner Yisrael in Baltimore. He...

dog-06 5

Like the Face of a Dog

R’ Yisroel Salanter described modern politics quite accurately when he explained the Mishnah’s cryptic statement that “the face of the generation will be like the face of the dog.” Sadly, he described modern religion, too.

cellphone-davening3

From the Mouths of Mexicans

I’ll call him Pedro; maybe it’s even his name. He seems to be a custodian of some sort for a shul – though I have no idea where it might...