By ISRAEL21c Staff
National Geographic Travel reveals the likely reasons why Israel ranks 5th for healthy longevity as cited in the UN World Happiness Report 2018.
The combination of a Mediterranean-style diet, low alcohol consumption, strong family and cultural values, and an excellent healthcare system could be the main factors that put Israel in fifth place worldwide on the longevity scale, according to National Geographic Travel.
This article has been reprinted with permission from InterfaithFamily
Wedding Email Series
If you and your partner are from two different faith backgrounds and planning a Jewish or Jewish and... wedding ceremony, there’s a lot to consider. From who will officiate to which Jewish rituals you will include to how to handle family dynamics, our rabbis have heard all the questions and helped many couples design the wedding of their dreams. We’re taking all our expertise and dishing it out in eight emails designed to offer ideas and options, answer common questions and connect you to a wealth of additional resources (and other couples!) so you can plan a ceremony that’s right for you. The first email will arrive on June 4.
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By Suzanne Selengut for Tablet Magazine
Hispanic crypto-Jews use social media and DNA testing to reconnect with their heritage
When retired civil servant Carl Montoya arrives for prayers at Mikveh Israel Synagogue in Philadelphia, he has a routine. He expertly wraps tefillin, dons his Sephardic prayer shawl, and greets his many friends in the pews. The Hebrew prayers can be tricky for him, but he is slowly mastering them all, together with the rest of Jewish ritual life. As a convert to Conservative Judaism and an active member of an Orthodox synagogue, Montoya has definitely broken from his past as a Catholic with deep roots in New Mexico’s historic Hispanic community. But what makes his story truly remarkable is not just that he is a Jew by choice, but that he is a Jew by birth.
By Paula Jacobs for Tablet Magazine
Congregations around the country have found ways to protect the environment and combat the effects of climate change
In Florida, synagogues are combating the effects of rising sea levels, high tides, and tropical storms. In California, they are conserving water in the aftermath of years of drought and water shortages. In New York, they are working to eliminate greenhouse gases and toxic waste. And in Massachusetts, they are reducing energy consumption and dependency on fossil fuels.
Irish Jewish Genealogical Database
Celts one of the Ten Lost Tribes of Israel?
There is a theory that the Irish, or that Insular Celts as a whole, are descended from the Ten Lost Tribes. Proponents of this theory state that there is evidence that the prophet Jeremiah came to Ireland with Princess Tea Tephi, a member of the Israelite royal family.
Proponents of this theory point to various parallels between Irish and ancient Hebrew culture. For example, they note that the harp, the symbol of Ireland, also plays a role in Jewish history, as the musical instrument of King David.
BY RACHEL AIN for JTS
Abracadabra! These words, recited by magicians all over the world, when broken down into smaller words introduce us to the truest mystery-the creation of the world. A'bara K'adabra - I will create as I have spoken. Just as magicians claim to have the power to change the reality that is in front of them with words, so too, when God created the world it was done not with hands, not with tools, but with speech. In Genesis 1:3 the first thing that God does is to speak. This verse reads, "And God said: 'Let there be light'; And there was light." What is it about the power of the spoken word that causes it to transform worlds?
By Abigail Klein Leichman for Israel21c
Tikkun Olam exposes high school freshmen to kids with disabilities, instilling feelings of empathy, acceptance and inclusion.
Nearly 400 ninth-graders from the Interdisciplinary High School in Hadera accompanied students from the nearby Neve Etgar School for Children with Special Needs on a Tu B’Shvat tree-planting activity earlier this year. The Hadera students decided to organize a music and crafts activity for the special-needs kids a week later.
By Uzi Baruch, Arutz Sheva
IDF receives order not to ask new recruits for their opinions on LGBTs, whether women should serve in combat roles.
Israelis arriving for a personal interview at the IDF's draft office may not be asked for their opinions on female combat soldiers or the LGBT movement, IDF Ombudsman Major-General Yizhak Barik (Res.) told the IDF's Meitav Unit (Reception and Sorting Base).
Following World War II and the establishment of the state of Israel, four new holidays, referred to as ‘modern’ Jewish holidays have been added to the Jewish calendar. Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day), Yom HaZikaron (Memorial Day), Yom HaAtzmaut (Independence Day) and Yom Yerushalayim (Jerusalem Day) are observed as national holidays in Israel, and recognized around the world by Jewish communities.
Yom HaShoah, also known as Yom Hashoah VeHagevurah, literally means the “day of remembrance of the Catastrophe and the Heroism.” It is commemorated on the 27th day in the month of Nisan. The observance is held one week after the seventh day of Passover. It also falls one week before Yom Hazikaron, the memorial day for Israel’s fallen soldiers.
By Diana Muir Appelbaum for Mosaic
Critics accuse it of threatening the separation of church and state; in truth, Washington’s new museum makes an invaluable contribution to American (and Jewish) cultural literacy.
The loud noise that you can hear from the National Mall in Washington is the sound of brickbats pelting the glass roof of the city’s new Museum of the Bible (MOTB). The museum houses an enormous display of the history and archaeology of the Bible. Its collections are spectacular. Entrance is free. Christian philanthropists paid for it. Evidently, it is for some or all of these reasons that so many of the nation’s critics are outraged.
Hummus was one of the very first recipes I ever blogged about, and it continues to be a favorite recipe on my site. Making your own hummus is easy and affordable, and the resulting flavor is far superior to those tubs of store-bought dip. When you peel the chickpeas before blending, a light, silky texture emerges that is simply irresistible.
See the full post:https://toriavey.com/toris-kitchen/classic-hummus/#LkYmPCD0Is3Lep0H.99
This animated short film was produced at Camp Ramah in New England by our 2014 Animation Kishroniyah participants in Magshimim & Bogrim. This program was the result of campers working with a visiting animation specialist.
By David Mikics for Tablet Magazine
Beate and Serge Klarsfeld’s moving memoirs trace the evolution of a new idea: that Germans were responsible for the Nazi past. Can today’s Europe learn from their moral courage?
Beate Klarsfeld had been saying for weeks that she would slap the chancellor. Twenty-five years earlier Kurt Georg Kiesinger had been Hitler’s assistant director of foreign propaganda in France. Now he was Germany’s head of state, and this ought to be a scandal, Klarsfeld thought. On Nov. 7, 1968, the 29-year-old Klarsfeld rushed across the stage during a meeting of Kiesinger’s Christian Democratic party and struck the surprised chancellor across the face. “Ohrfeige für den Kanzler!” (“A slap for the chancellor!”) the newspapers excitedly proclaimed.
Sarah Aaronsohn and Her Nili Spy Ring by Gregory J Wallace
About the Book
Though she lived only to twenty-seven, Sarah Aaronsohn led a remarkable life. The Woman Who Fought an Empire tells the improbable but true odyssey of a bold young woman—the daughter of Romanian-born Jewish settlers in Palestine—who became the daring leader of a Middle East spy ring.
Just in time for Yom Ha'Atzmaut, Israel Independence Day, April 20/5 Iyar
Join us on a journey through the last 70 years to discover how Israel has become one of the most creative and innovative countries in the world. Our fascinating timeline of accomplishment is the first part in a special multimedia package we've created to celebrate Israel's 70th anniversary.
By Stephie Grob Plante for Tablet Magazine
A ceremony that honored both Judaism and Catholicism without offending our parents proved elusive—until an uncle saved the day
When I got engaged four years ago, some of my relatives asked if my fiancé Chris was planning to convert. The answer was no: I was Jewish, he was Catholic, and none of that would change once we were married. Being an interfaith couple wasn’t something we worried about much. Our thinking, we recognize now, was matter of fact and fairly superficial. At 24 and 25 years old, we’d been together for five years already and lived together since senior year of college. Religion never posed an issue before—why should it now?
We were young. We had much to learn.
From BBC History Magazine
Jewish people first began arriving in England following the Norman Conquest in 1066 and their histories can be traced in the country’s major cities today. Through the story of a bronze cauldron known as the Bodleian Bowl, historian Rebecca Abrams explores the experiences of Jews in medieval England, from prosperity to persecution…
Jewish communities spread rapidly throughout the Mediterranean world from the first century AD, but it was not until the 11th century that Jewish people in any significant number began to cross the Channel and settle in England. This magnificent bronze cauldron, from the Ashmolean Museum in Oxford (pictured), is intimately bound up with the story of how the Jews first came to England in 1070, and what happened to them during the next 200 years before they were abruptly expelled from the country in 1290.
By ISRAEL21c Staff
A new study predicts an extended hot season in the eastern Mediterranean that will impact regional ecosystems and human health.
Summer in the eastern Mediterranean is already a brutally hot dry period of four months, with steady temperatures in the high 80s and 90s. Now, a new study says that by 2100, climate changes caused by global warming will extend the region’s summer season by two full months.
By Ofer Aderet for Haaretz
On the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day, Levie Kanes received an email: 'Are you the baby who was taken off a train in mid-journey that departed The Hague on April 23, 1943?'
A year ago, on the eve of Holocaust Remembrance Day, Levie Kanes of Kfar Haroeh, north of Tel Aviv, received a surprising email with a question that took the 75-year-old lawyer back to his infancy: “Are you baby Jantje de Ridder, who was taken off a train in mid-journey that departed The Hague on April 23, 1943?”
Leviticus 9:1 - 11:47
BY MATTHEW BERKOWITZ, DIRECTOR OF ISRAEL PROGRAMS for JTS
Silence and Loss
One of the most enigmatic and painful moments of all of Tanakh occurs in Parashat Shemini. Nadav and Avihu, Aaron’s sons, come before the altar and offer what Torah describes as an “alien fire.” Without any sense of deliberation or warning, a divine fire issues forth and consumes Aaron’s progeny. Clearly shocked by the mystery of their deaths, Leviticus tells us that “Aaron was silent” (Lev. 10:1–3). Though I have often pointed to Aaron and his response as a powerful example of mourning the inexplicable loss of loved ones, Nahmanides gives us pause to reconsider the peshat(Torah’s literal meaning) of this verse. I, and many others, have always understood Aaron’s reaction as a deep, impenetrable silence reflecting the most genuine and profound reaction to tragedy. Ramban is far more nuanced in his reading.