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Israeli chefs take hamantaschen to a whole new level

jewish-food - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:00am
By Andrew Tobin for JTA

Cheesecake, amaretto or goat cheese and onion jam?

Those are just some of the new hamantaschen options this year at Roladin, a popular Israeli bakery chain. On Tuesday, the Dizengoff Center branch in Tel Aviv, one of dozens around the country, was bustling in advance of the Purim holiday, which starts next Wednesday evening.


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Want more information on Purim? Check out Jvillage Network's Purim Guide. 


What is Purim?

children-and-families - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:00am
From bimbam.com

From the parties to the reading of the Megillah to the piles and piles of Hamentashen, Purim is easily the most fun holiday in the Jewish calendar. This series of videos talks about all of the great traditions, the basics, the story, the graggers (including a video on making your own). Check them out!

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Want more information on Purim? Check out Jvillage Network's Purim Guide. 

Jewish Books to Look Forward to in 2018

jewish-books - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:00am
From Jewish Book Council

It's time to compile our reading lists for the year ahead. There are so many amazing Jewish-interest books coming out in 2018...We have a lot of reading to do! Here's just a small selection of forthcoming releases that we're particularly excited about.

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Saving lives in the ICU through artificial intelligence

israeil-news - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:00am

Photo from Shutterstock


By Brian Blum for Israel21c

An Israeli venture capitalist’s personal tragedy brought him to a startup seeking to provide immediate health updates for fragile patients.


Two years ago, Gal Salomon’s mother developed sepsis during a stay in the hospital. “It was a big hospital with a lot of patients and no one saw or understood it was happening,” Salomon recalls bitterly. “We lost her after two days.”

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How is “Interfaith Purim” Different From All Other Purims? It Isn’t.

interfaith - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:00am

Purim begins the evening of February 28


For interfaith families sharing Judaism and Christianity, spring is busy with holidays. From Christianity, we have Mardi Gras, Lent, Easter. From Judaism, we have Purim, Passover and Shavuot. When I tell folks we are celebrating any of these holidays with our independent interfaith community, I often get questions like, “How is interfaith Purim different from regular (Jewish) Purim?”

And the answer is: it isn’t, at least not in terms of the celebration, the rituals, the liturgy. The point of our interfaith community is not to change the traditions, or merge them, or create a third religion. Rather, the intent is to give our children the deepest experience of these rituals we possibly can, while remaining radically inclusive of who gets to participate, and how.

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Want more? Check out Jvillage Network's Purim Board on Pinterest. 

Want even more information on Purim? Check out Jvillage Network's Purim Guide. 



Looking Beyond Purim and the Megilla

celebrating-judaism - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:00am
By Peretz Goldstein for JPULSE in JewishBoston.com

Purim Begins the Evening of February 28, 2018

Have you ever wondered why Purim comes before Pesach?


Exactly 30 days after Purim, we celebrate the holiday of Pesach. Our Sages tell us that this is no coincidence. The juxtaposition of these two holidays is the theme of redemption; being saved. “Masmich geula le’geula” – connecting salvation to salvation.

The comparison of Pesach and Purim is clear. What we celebrate at Pesach time is another instance in Jewish history where the Jews were under extreme persecution, threatened to be wiped out, and were saved at the end of the day (that’s why we have a party and drink some le’chaims at the Seder night too!).

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Want more information on Purim? Check out Jvillage Network's Purim Guide. 

Is man-made pollution making storms more severe?

green-living - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:00am
by Jaime Bender for FromtheGrapevine

Research shows that even the smallest of man-made particles can intensify thunderstorms, which can lead to soil erosion, runoff and damaged crops.

In case you're still wondering what kind of impact something as commonplace as your car's exhaust is having on the environment ... wonder no more.

A new study from an international team of researchers – including Dr. Jiwen Fan at the U.S. Department of Energy and Professor Daniel Rosenfeld of the Institute of Earth Sciences at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, Israel – found that even the smallest particles from man-made emissions can fuel severe storms and influence weather. That, in turn, can wreak serious havoc on crops and agriculture.

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He Fought Polar Bears And Nazis And Was Called ‘The Most Unique Jew Alive’

featured-articles - Mon, 02/19/2018 - 12:00am
Talya Zax for The Forward


On December 20, 1934, the New York Jewish Daily Bulletin’s Michel Kraike published an article about one Peter Freuchen: “Eight feet tall, weighing close to 330 pounds, with a head like a grizzly bear’s and a thick, square red beard.”

Born in Denmark, Freuchen held a series of professions that, to modern ears, might sound unlikely: He was an Arctic explorer who traded goods with the Eskimos, a novelist who accidentally starred in a Hollywood adaptation of his book “Eskimo,” an amateur-surgeon-by-necessity — suffering from frostbite during his time with the Eskimos, he amputated several of his own toes before eventually having his leg amputated — and a onetime governor of a Greenland colony.

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weekly-torah-portion - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am

Exodus 25:1 - 27:19

Rabbi Brent C. Spodek for myjewishlearning.com

In Forgiveness, Making Space for the Divine

To forgive is to hold on to the future more tightly than the past.

A dear friend recently got a letter that is rearranging her life.

Her childhood was difficult — screaming fights, police intervention when her father got violent, constant fear. Her body and soul were scarred by her father, and then one day she came home from middle school and her father was gone, never to be heard from again.


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Turning ideas into action at our first ambassador retreat

young-adults - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
By Nicky Blackburn for Israel21c

Student ambassadors from all over the United States descended on Chicago to take part in an ISRAEL21c hackathon.

At a conference room at theWit hotel in downtown Chicago, the ideas were coming in thick and fast. At five different tables, 25 students from colleges across the United States were sharing thoughts and suggestions about how to take ISRAEL21c content and turn it into innovative social-media campaigns.

Outside it was snowing, the temperature hovering around minus 6 degrees Celsius in true wintertime Chicago fashion, but inside was a hive of warmth and activity, the room abuzz with original and creative proposals.

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5 Steps for Creating LGBTQ-Friendly Hillels

LGBTQ - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
EMILY STRAUSS for newvoices.org

I saw women and men sitting across from each other at tables and sat on the ground in between to make my presence visible. It was awkward for all of us. Apparently the irony of a heteronormative speed dating event taking place next door to a gay bar was lost on my Hillel.

But the event was more than awkward. It was hurtful, at least for me. My Hillel’s speed dating was only open to heterosexual, gender binary conforming students. It was clear to me that it had been planned with no thought of my presence, LGBTQ Jews in our community. It sent a message about what kind of couples and families are wanted in the Jewish communal future. It made me realize Hillel needs guidance on inclusion for queer students, so here is my advice:

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SACRED PROTECTORS: Crossing Boundaries of Time and Faith, These Muslims Safeguard Morocco’s Holy Jewish Sites

news-in-the-jewish-world - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
BY AOMAR BOUM for the JewishJournal.com

It’s a hot summer day when I arrive at Khmis Arazan, a small rural town in southern Morocco, about 170 miles south of Marrakesh. It’s Thursday, market day, and a group of local children spots me. Before I say a word, they know where I’m headed. There’s only one reason why outsiders find their way to this remote community: to visit the synagogue.

It has been four decades since the last of the Jews left Khmis Arazan, whose 8,000-some residents are nearly all Muslims. But it’s clear from the well-trodden path that more than a few tourists have made their way down these unpaved streets to the now crumbling Jewish neighborhood.

Arriving at the synagogue — an adobe structure dating from the late 19th century and recently renovated — I am greeted by Hmad Harim, a Muslim man in his late 60s who has spent much of his life working as caretaker for this relic of Morocco’s rich Jewish past.

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Fact-Checking The Frisco Kid: A Historian’s Take on a Jewish Classic

jewish-arts-and-media - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
Shari Rabin for Jewish Book Council

While writing my book about Jews in the era of westward expansion, I found myself getting asked (a lot) about the Gene Wilder comedic western The Frisco Kid. Although there are countless cinematic depictions—and historical accounts—of Jewish life on the Lower East Side, apparently the rest of the country has to resign itself to this 1979 box office flop, which tells the story of a Polish rabbi traveling westward to San Francisco in 1850. Recently, some twenty years after I last saw it, I sat down to confront my subject’s most famous treatment.

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A Purim Treat That’s Fit for a Queen

jewish-food - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
By Joan Nathan for Tablet Magazine  

Purim begins the evening of February 28


Every year at Purim we look forward to eating sweet triangular pastries called hamantaschen, but the first recipe I could find for cookies we might recognize as hamantaschen—filled with poppy seeds—appeared in Aunt Babette’s Cookbook of 1889. So what did American Jews eat on Purim before then? Purim fritters, also known as Queen Esther’s toast.

A recipe for Purim fritters appears in Jennie June’s Cookbook of 1866, and it was copied as Queen Esther’s toast in the National Cookery Book 10 years later, celebrating the Centennial Exhibition in Philadelphia. It was made from the inside of a stale roll or loaf of bread, with the crust removed, soaked in eggs and milk; it was then fried in butter and served with cinnamon, a sugar syrup, honey, or “hundreds and thousands”—essentially, jimmies or sprinkles.

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Want more information on Purim? Check out Jvillage Network's Purim Guide. 

How to Make Savory Hamantaschen, Six Ways

children-and-families - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
BY SAMANTHA FERRARO for The Nosher for myjewishlearning.com 

Purim Begins the Evening of February 28, 2018

Purim is all about the party, the fun and the celebrating. Get in the spirit this year and host a build-your-own hamantaschen party! Not everyone wants sweet treats these days, so why not make them savory?


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Want more information on Purim? Check out Jvillage Network's Purim Guide. 


Author Talk: Rose Tremain

jewish-books - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
By Joanne Sydney Lessner for Hadassah Magazine

The Gustav Sonata, winner of Hadassah Magazine’s Harold U. Ribalow Award as well as a National Jewish Book Award, is the first of Rose Tremain’s 14 novels to address a Jewish theme. Tremain, 74, who lives in Norfolk, England, often writes about social groups slightly out of the prevailing mainstream. Her Orange Prize-winner The Road Home concerns an Eastern European immigrant trying to make a life in England. The Gustav Sonata, set in Switzerland before, during and after World War II, traces the lifelong friendship between exuberant, ambitious (and Jewish) Anton and reserved, empathetic Gustav (who is not). While exploring the evolution of their relationship and the family circumstances that shape them, Tremain turns her delicately penetrating prose to themes of unspoken love, loyalty, music and the sacrifices made in pursuit of neutrality.

What was your inspiration for The Gustav Sonata?

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The 3 big breakthroughs coming to digital health in 2018

israeil-news - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
By Abigail Klein Leichman for Israel21c

Israel is pioneering digital health developments for the world. Which ones will hit their stride in the coming months?

Medication personalization, personalized disease management and reducing chronic pain will be the three biggest breakthroughs in digital health this year, predicts Dr. Yossi Bahagon, a family physician, global digital health consultant and managing partner of OurCrowd Qure, Israel’s first exclusively focused digital health fund.

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interfaith - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
This article has been reprinted with permission from InterfaithFamily 


Purim Begins the Evening of February 28, 2018

Purim is a Jewish Halloween, a Jewish Mardi Gras and a secular New Year rolled into one. And it is not just a holiday for children who know immediately that anything with a costume will be fun. All Jews are commanded to be silly and celebrate the ancient victory against their adversaries by giving gifts of food to friends and to the poor.

Purim comes in the late winter or early spring. Jews have celebrated by dressing up as both the heroes and villains of the Purim story, as they chase away their winter doldrums and acknowledge that Purim brings springtime.

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Want more? Check out Jvillage Network's Purim Board on Pinterest. 

Want even more information on Purim? Check out Jvillage Network's Purim Guide. 

Your Guide to Reading the Hebrew Bible

celebrating-judaism - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
myjewishlearning.com Staff

Learn the many chapters that make up the Tanach and find out where you can find more information about each.

Have you always wanted to read the Bible, but didn’t know how to get started?

In addition to the myriad editions of the Hebrew Bible (also known as the Tanach ) available in book form, the entire Bible can be read in Hebrew and English on Sefaria, an online resource that enables users to search by keyword and provides links to commentaries and other related materials. Below, we outline the contents of the Bible, with links to our articles about each section.

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Pollution’s impact on weather, crops worse than once thought

green-living - Mon, 02/12/2018 - 12:00am
By ISRAEL21c Staff

New multinational research reveals that even small amounts of manmade aerosol particles can wreak havoc.

Even the tiniest of particles from human emissions can fuel powerful storms and influence weather and crops much more than previously thought, according to new research published January 26 in the journal Science.

The study focuses on the power of manmade aerosol emissions to grow rain clouds and intensify storms. These particles come from urban and industrial air pollution, wildfires and other sources.

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