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Monday, January 20, 2020

Features

A New Proposal Regarding the Tuition Crisis

What our community has termed the “day school tuition crisis” may seem intractable. But our community is not a poor one, and communal and para-communal organizations raise millions of dollars from it for various programs and services here and in Israel. The open secret that is the answer to this paradox is that the Orthodox community

Triggering Outdoor Motion Sensors on Shabbat: Detecting Hashem’s Hand in the Halachic Process

On the way home from Shaarei Orah this past Friday night, I asked my sons to swerve out of range of a motion detector that would trigger a light when we passed by. While my sons happily complied (and even thanked me), one might wonder as to whether this was truly necessary. The answer depends on the resolution of a number of fundamental

Refusing to Listen, Refusing to Believe

Parshat Shemot

When commenting on this week’s haftarah over these past years, we have searched for a logical connection to the parsha. After all, the parsha focuses upon the years of enslavement that our people endured and the dawning of the long-awaited redemption from their oppression, while the

‘Mas’ and ‘Miskenot’ (Exodus 1:11)

Last year I read a book by someone very familiar with rabbinic Hebrew and modern Hebrew who ended up studying the King James Bible and writing a book about the inadequacies of its translations.

When she got to Exodus 1:11, “sarei misim,” she was shocked at its translation: “taskmasters.” She

‘Mas’ and ‘Miskenot’ (Exodus 1:11)

Last year I read a book by someone very familiar with rabbinic Hebrew and modern Hebrew who ended up studying the King James Bible and writing a book about the inadequacies of its translations.

When she got to Exodus 1:11, “sarei misim,” she was shocked at its translation: “taskmasters.” She

‘Mas’ and ‘Miskenot’ (Exodus 1:11)

Last year I read a book by someone very familiar with rabbinic Hebrew and modern Hebrew who ended up studying the King James Bible and writing a book about the inadequacies of its translations.

When she got to Exodus 1:11, “sarei misim,” she was shocked at its translation: “taskmasters.” She

Tapping Into the Power Of Student Leadership

Each student deserves to be a citizen of a school and not just a visitor for the duration of time they spend inside the school. Knowing that school life is demanding socially and academically, it is important for schools to offer ways to foster character development and boost self-awareness as they navigate those challenges. Leadership

Ads Well That Ends Well

Advertising is important because it enables people to hear about your business if you have one, helps you locate a business if you need one and often funds the entertainment in which the advertising appears, such as perhaps the very pages you’re reading right now. The thing about advertising, unlike word of mouth, is that it’s

What Is Life Worth? Thoughts On the Siyum HaShas

Author’s note: This brief talk was presented at the Hadran Women’s Siyyum Ha-Shas in Jerusalem on January 5, 2020, 8 Tevet 5780. Standing at the podium, looking out on a sea of over 3,300 people, mostly women, celebrating Torah study together felt like walking in a dream. There was so much hope and power in that room. I recited the

Framing and Creating a Brilliant Context for the Book of Exodus

Reviewing: “The Koren Tanakh of the Land of Israel: Exodus,” edited by David Arnovitz; English translation by Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks. Koren Publishers Jerusalem; 2020. Hebrew, English. Hardcover. 327 pages. ISBN-13: 978-9657760338.

When it comes to an understanding of a subject, context

A Mother’s Beautiful Strength, Shared Passionately

Reviewing: “Expecting My Child: A Mother’s Longing,” by Bat-Galim Shaer, 2018. Translated by David Swidler, edited by Hila Ratzabi.

As I begin to write about the courageous, heart-wrenching account written by Bat-Galim Shaer, households throughout many communities in Israel are

What’s in a (Tanachic) Name?

Part 1

When did the Jewish practice of naming children after someone begin?

The practice seemed to have been instituted in Judea sometime after the destruction of the Second Temple (or possibly during the end of the First Commonwealth). Before that period, children