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Jewish Journal

Rabbi Yitzchok Adlerstein

  • Sukkahs are for sleeping

    September 27, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    We were all refugees from New York, where shivering in the sukkah made global warming seem like an attractive alternative. Taking up residence in California conferred some advantages -- and responsibilities. We were intent on doing what our Ashkenazi forebearers, who lived in...
  • Kabbalist Theory of Everything

    December 16, 2004 | 7:00 pm

     

    "Derech Hashem -- The Way of God" by Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto (Feldheim, 1997).

    Quietly studying a page of the Talmud on a crowded plane, the great Orthodox teacher and thinker Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik was interrupted by a passenger in the next seat.

    "Pardon me. What is that...

  • Kabbalist Theory of Everything

    December 16, 2004 | 7:00 pm

     

    "Derech Hashem -- The Way of God" by Rabbi Moshe Chaim Luzzatto (Feldheim, 1997).

    Quietly studying a page of the Talmud on a crowded plane, the great Orthodox teacher and thinker Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik was interrupted by a passenger in the next seat.

    "Pardon me. What is that...

  • Lenin, Meet Noah

    October 14, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    Fall was just beginning to turn the Moscow air crispy when the lot of us -- 10 high school seniors and three faculty members of Yeshiva University Los Angeles Girls' School -- trudged down the stairs of our Intourist Hotel in the late '80s, and began our walk of several miles, not to...

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  • In Praise of Hypocrisy

    October 24, 2002 | 8:00 pm

    "Why do you Jews cheat so much?"

    The nun sitting next to a colleague of mine on a plane had first asked him whether she could pose a question about his Jewishness. He was more than agreeable, but expected to be queried about some point of Jewish custom or thought. He had not...

  • The Presence of Greatness

    July 25, 2002 | 8:00 pm

    Inspirational speeches are sometimes improved by leaving out the words.

    Deuteronomy records, for the most part, Moses' farewell address to his people. He begins by rehashing the events of the last 40 years, a story laden with some nasty national failings. Seeing that his audience at...

  • Conservation and Appreciation

    May 2, 2002 | 8:00 pm

    I learned of the Jewish slant on conservation on my first flight to Israel in my late teens. Fate would have it that I was seated next to a very dignified and sage-looking haredi gentlemen. He was quite pleased, since he would not have to fend off small talk about soccer teams with...

  • Strengthen Bonds, Don’t Stretch Them

    February 28, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    Somerset Maugham could have had the Israeli High Court in mind when he wrote, "For every complex problem, there is a solution that is simple, direct -- and wrong."

    The decision to register converts of all denominations as Jews will not only be regretted by the Orthodox in the short...

  • One People

    February 21, 2002 | 7:00 pm

    Standing a bit under five feet, the speaker surprised his audience with the passion and power of his voice.

    The Purim message he delivered was born on a hurried journey a half-century before, but its impact was timeless.

    "Haman convinces Ahasuerus to exterminate the Jews. 'There is...

  • Lenin, Meet Noah

    October 18, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    Fall was just beginning to turn the Moscow air crispy when the lot of us -- 10 high school seniors and three faculty members of YULA Girls' School -- trudged down the stairs of our Intourist Hotel in the late '80s, and began our walk of several miles, not to the better-known Chabad...

  • Wordless Lessons

    July 12, 2001 | 8:00 pm

    The proverbial apple may not fall far from the tree. Often, though, the question is: which tree?

    The Torah portion opens by tracing Pinchas' lineage back to his paternal grandfather, Moses' brother, Aaron. Pinchas, it will be recalled from last week's reading, dramatically put an end...

  • Flawed Methodology

    September 14, 2000 | 8:00 pm

    No one seems to believe what Pini Herman does. While all observers - particularly outside of the Orthodox community - take for granted the phenomenal growth of the Orthodox, he continues to stand behind the seriously flawed methods he used in the Los Angeles Jewish Population Survey...