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History of Israel's National Anthem: Does HaTikvah Mean Hope for All?

young-adults - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am


This video is part of a series on Israeli History from Jerusalem U. Catch the entire series on YouTube. 


On this week's History of Israel Explained, we’re looking at one of the most Israeli things out there - HaTikvah, or The Hope - Israel’s stirring, meaningful and, some might say, controversial national anthem.

Unlike other anthems that speak of triumph and victory, the Israeli anthem is a mash up between a Romanian folk-melody, a 16th-century Italian song, and the lyrical thoughts of a drunk romantic poet. Not exactly the stuff of nationalistic dreams, but like the State of Israel itself, Hatikvah is both a symbol of Jewish hope and identity and the anthem for a multicultural and multi-ethnic state dedicated to equality.

Read & Watch.

A Very Queer Shabbat Dinner

LGBTQ - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
By Leah Koenig for Tablet Magazine


Food writer Jake Cohen cooks with soul at his monthly Friday night gatherings

On a recent Friday morning, Jake Cohen could be found chopping rainbow carrots, watermelon radishes, orange cauliflower, and a pile of other heirloom vegetables to serve as crudités alongside bowls of sweet potato hummus. A 16-quart (read: enormous) stock pot brimming with Persian bean and noodle stew called ash e reshteh rested in the fridge. Also prepped and chilling: many pounds of brisket, sweet noodle kugel, the elaborate makings of several cheese boards, and a sheet pan of his signature sumac and sea salt-spiked brownies.

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Seven MPs leave Labour Party in protest at Jeremy Corbyn's leadership

news-in-the-jewish-world - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
From BBC


Seven MPs have resigned from the Labour Party in protest at Jeremy Corbyn's approach to Brexit and anti-Semitism.


They are: Chuka Umunna, Luciana Berger, Chris Leslie, Angela Smith, Mike Gapes, Gavin Shuker and Ann Coffey.

Ms Berger said Labour had become institutionally anti-Semitic and she was "embarrassed and ashamed" to stay.

Read & Watch. 

Dear Erich: An Exciting Addition to the Jazz Opera Repertory

jewish-arts-and-media - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
By Aron Hirt-Manheimer for ReformJudaism.org 


Dear Erich: A Jazz Opera, co-produced by the New York City Opera and National Yiddish Theatre Folkbiene, premiered in January 2019 at the Museum of Jewish Heritage in Manhattan to standing ovations. The music is by Ted Rosenthal, the world-renowned jazz pianist and composer; he and Lesley Rosenthal wrote the libretto.


Ted Rosenthal conceived Dear Erich after learning the contents of 200 letters, written mostly by his grandmother, Herta, trapped in Nazi Germany, to his father, safe in America.


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Kim Kushner’s ‘I Heart Kosher’ Will Have You Loving Kosher, Too

jewish-food - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
By Jessica Halfin for Hadassah Magazine 


There was a time not too long ago when food-based, aspirational lifestyle brands were reserved for non-Jewish women like Martha Stewart, famous for her empire of domestic perfection. There was no place in that world, it seemed, for the modern Jewish woman who wasn’t looking to find the perfect glaze for a Sunday ham.

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My Go To School Lunch Recipes

children-and-families - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
Jamie Geller for JoyofKosher


Want to spice up your child’s lunchbox with a little love from Israel? Check out these delicious sandwich recipes. They are a cinch to make and the kids will give you two thumbs up!


Ultimate Israeli Sandwich


Three Cheese Pita Panini


The Unlikely Legacy of Judaism in the Caribbean

jewish-books - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
by Betsy Blumenthal for Conde Nast Traveler


Photographer Wyatt Gallery's new book documents the rich history of the region's centuries-old Jewish communities.


The story of the Jewish people is, and always has been, one of resilience. And perhaps nowhere is this legacy of perseverance more evident—or surprising—than in the Jewish communities of the Caribbean, whose sacred sites photographer Wyatt Gallery has amassed in his new book, Jewish Treasures of the Caribbean: The Legacy of Judaism in the New World. To him, offering a reminder of the Jewish people's struggles to persist in the practice and safekeeping of their faith is more important now than ever: "From the 1500s until the 1700s," he says, "Jews couldn't enter anywhere; no one wanted us. [Now,] we need to look out for those who are in trouble, and those who are refugees, because we were once refugees."

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Groundbreaking Israeli Medical Device Treats Burns Without Ever Touching The Patient

israeil-news - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
By Viva Sarah Press, NoCamels


Imagine being able to treat burn injuries without causing added pain to the burn victim when dressing a wound. An Israeli nanotechnology company focused on the development and manufacturing of portable electrospinning technology for medical applications, has created a device that does just that and more.

Nanomedic Technologies Ltd, based in Lod, a city just outside of Tel Aviv, has developed a breakthrough medical device that looks like an oversized glue gun, which helps burn victims skip the unbearable pain usually associated with dressing changes in burn treatment.

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The video book trailer for The Interfaith Family Journal is here.

interfaith - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
Susan Katz Miller Blog: OnBeingBoth

While you wait for your pre-ordered journals to arrive on March 15th, I hope you get a kick out of watching this video featuring…

  • enthusiastic praise from experts
  • gorgeous cover art
  • and great indie music courtesy of Ladle Fight

…all packed into less than one minute.

For years, couples and families have been asking my advice on how to get joy from being an interfaith family. So I created the first and only book published to support any and all interfaith (or religious/non-religious, or completely secular) families. Whether your family roots are Hindu/Jewish, or Christian/atheist, or Pagan/Buddhist/Unitarian, this is the first interactive journal written for you.

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The History of Yiddish

celebrating-judaism - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
By Mordecai Walfish on MyJewishLearning


Yiddish originated in Germany, but was eventually spoken by Jews all over Europe.


In its 1,000-plus-year history, the Yiddish language has been called many things, including the tender name mameloshen (mother tongue), the adversarial moniker zhargon (jargon) and the more matter-of-fact Judeo-German.

Read & Watch.

9 eerie and stunning photos of the disappearing Dead Sea

green-living - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
By Naama Barak for Israel21c


Check out the natural wonder that is the lowest point on earth as it continues to vanish at alarming rate.


The Dead Sea is all kinds of things – a natural wonder, the lowest place on earth, its saltiest waterbody and a fabulous place to schmear on some mud and feel all rejuvenated. It’s also technically a lake.

But most importantly, it’s fast disappearing.

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Intro to Emancipation and Enlightenment

featured-articles - Mon, 02/25/2019 - 12:00am
from BimBam.com 


Birth of Modern Judaism


If you want to understand how Reform, Conservative and Orthodox Judaism came to be, you need to take a step back to when they first formed. Watch this explainer video to learn some Jewish history about the Enlightenment and Emancipation periods featuring BimBam producer Jeremy Shuback.

Watch video.

Ki Tisa

weekly-torah-portion - Mon, 02/18/2019 - 12:00am

Exodus 30:11−34:35

By Amy Kalmanofsky, JTS

Kept by Shabbat

Ahad Ha’am famously said: “More than Jews have kept Shabbat, Shabbat has kept the Jews.” Pretty remarkable coming from the founder of cultural Zionism!

Parashat Ki Tissa either supports or challenges Ha’am’s words. This week’s parashah relates one of the lowest moments in Israel’s story—the sin of the golden calf—in which Israel dances before a god of their own making. Coming down Mount Sinai with the stone tablets inscribed by God’s finger (Exod. 31:18), Moses sees Israel’s frenzy and smashes the tablets. Moses spends the rest of the parashah picking up the pieces and working to restore Israel’s relationship with God. The parashah ends with God giving a new set of tablets to Moses. The holy covenant between God and Israel is restored.

Read & Listen. 

It’s Time to Teach Our Tweens Some Super-Basic Phone Manners

young-adults - Mon, 02/18/2019 - 12:00am
By Zibby Owens for Kveller 

I think the iPhone should come with an instruction manual that’s required reading. It isn’t enough to know how to connect to Wifi or how to Facetime five people at once — it’s equally important to understand how to communicate with other humans in a decent, which isn’t intuitive to new users (i.e., tweens). 

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In Defense of Transgender Military Service Members

LGBTQ - Mon, 02/18/2019 - 12:00am
A Wider Bridge

A Wider Bridge is deeply disappointed that the Supreme Court has reinstated President Trump’s partial ban on transgender people in the United States Military.

Transgender Americans who wish to serve their country deserve the same respect and decency from their representative government as cisgender people. The administration’s proposed policies, which would strip trans people of their dignity, are rooted in bigotry and fear. These policies echo similar efforts throughout history to discriminate against gays and lesbians, immigrants, people of color, Muslims and Jews.

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Jews Of Uganda Are Torn Apart Over A Bitter Sibling Rivalry

news-in-the-jewish-world - Mon, 02/18/2019 - 12:00am
Tonny Onyulo for The Forward 


During a recent Shabbat service here, Rabbi Gershom Sizomu led dozens of worshippers in a prayer for unity. Women sang psalms. Children clapped. Men wearing yarmulkes played drums and guitars.

Locally known in Uganda as Abayudaya or “the people of Judah,” they practice Conservative Judaism with an African flair — and right now, need exactly that prayer. A conflict is now splitting the community, which is almost a century old.

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Israeli Photographer Brings Female Biblical Figures to Life

jewish-arts-and-media - Mon, 02/18/2019 - 12:00am
By NoCamels Team

The bible has for centuries been a source of inspiration and influence for art in all its forms. The canonical collection of texts sacred to Abrahamic religions has indeed inspired some of the world’s greatest known works of art.

Israeli photographer Dikla Laor has worked for six years to bring the stories of female biblical figures to life through the camera lens, embarking on a unique project to imagine these characters’ appearances, dress, and demeanor against breathtaking backdrops. Her “Biblical Women Series” includes the “first woman,” Eve, the Jewish matriarchs – Sarah, Rivka (Rebecca), Leah and Rachel – Lot’s wife, the Queen of Sheba, the prophetess Deborah, and Jezebel, among over 40 such photographs.

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6 soups and stews from Israel to warm you this winter

jewish-food - Mon, 02/18/2019 - 12:00am
by Josh Lew for FromtheGrapevine

These hearty dishes will make you forget about the cold weather.

A good soup can warm your body from the inside. When winter begins, so too do people's cravings for steamy bowls of broth. The cuisine of every country that experiences cold weather has at least a few trademark soups and stews. The best of these recipes are often exported to other four-season places around the globe.

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New device alerts parents when kids are in danger of drowning

children-and-families - Mon, 02/18/2019 - 12:00am
by Benyamin Cohen for FromtheGrapevine

Unveiled at CES, the Coral Manta camera keeps a watchful eye at residential swimming pools.

Eyal Golan, an Israeli entrepreneur with three young children, built a swimming pool at his home about five years ago. At the time, he was looking for safety features to give him some peace of mind. "But there was nothing that works like a lifeguard," he said. "Something that always watches the pool and does not depend on the child's behavior – like whether he wears the device or forgot to wear it."

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The Alter Bible

jewish-books - Mon, 02/18/2019 - 12:00am
By Adam Kirsch for Tablet Magazine

In a landmark new translation, Robert Alter revives the literary power of a Hebrew masterpiece

The Bible is a refractory book, never behaving quite as we expect it to. Indeed, much of the creativity of Jewish tradition has been devoted to harmonizing the actual Bible with Judaism’s changing expectations of what it should be. The rabbinic genre of midrash tries to make sense of the text’s many narrative contradictions and ethical perplexities. The Talmud assumes that every word in the Torah is there to teach a point of halacha, while Maimonides insisted that the Bible actually teaches the same truths as Greek philosophy, though it uses an allegorical method that can easily mislead the ignorant. And the mystical Zohar, written in medieval Spain, says that if all there were to the Torah were its surface meaning, it would be easy to write a better book: It is only the hidden, esoteric content of the Torah that makes it sacred.

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