When I first met Ralph, he was 82 years old. He suffered from shortness of breath which started when his wife of 56 years was diagnosed with a rare bone cancer. Upon further investigation, I diagnosed him with a weak heart and a very tight aortic valve which required immediate...
Islamic State militants behead captive Lebanese soldier
Comedian Joan Rivers remains in serious condition at N.Y. hospital
Syrian rebels reinforce siege of U.N. peace-keepers on Golan Heights
U.N. peace-keepers rescued from militants in Golan Heights
5 Questions for Rabbi Block on the New York Times
David Getman, a 2010 Milken graduate, dies in San Francisco collision
Hillary Clinton, Israel and the Jews
Cleveland State University signs agreement with University of Haifa
May 29, 2014 | 7:27 am
May 21, 2014 | 10:53 am
A Christian, a Jew, and a Muslim walk into a bar. The bartender says, “What is this, a joke?”
Actually, it’s a true story: the Muslim, Rahmi Mowjood, ordered a virgin mojito and shared Sufi poetry. The Jew related how he became the Accidental Talmudist. And the Christian, Jason...
December 18, 2013 | 12:30 am
June 5, 2013 | 10:13 am
May 6, 2012 | 3:20 pm
January 25, 2012 | 10:47 am
August 31, 2009 | 7:35 am
November 3, 2008 | 6:03 pm
Volume V: Jew vs. Wild
One of the main reasons I moved to Los Angeles was for the weather. Unfortunately, it took me a few months before I really started taking advantage of the climate and outdoor activities, like hiking, fishing, swimming, sailing, sunbathing, people watching, breathing, etc. And of course, the common stereotype exists that Jews and the wilderness are not a match made in heaven. But I traveled deep into the wild (Santa Monica pier and the Hollywood Hills) to prove that in the battle between Jews and the wild…Jews win.
September 21, 2006 | 8:00 pm
April 27, 2006 | 8:00 pm
Why do bad things happen to good people? Or why do bad things happen to me? Dr. Aryeh Dean Cohen paraphrased these questions at an April 5 interfaith dialogue on theodicy or how to reconcile a benevolent God with evil.
The roundtable dialogue, "Jewish and...
March 2, 2006 | 7:00 pm
"Just one Shabbos and we'll all be free," religious rocker Mordechai Ben David sang back in the 1980s. Well, for the last decade, one Jewish organization has tried to get people to experience Shabbat at least once a year. The National Jewish Outreach Project (NJOP) on March 3...
September 15, 2005 | 8:00 pm
Let's face it. Many people go to synagogue on the High Holidays because they have to. A feeling of poorly understood and unappreciated obligation can pervade this time of year. But it doesn't have to. You can put yourself or your children in the spirit and in the know with help from...
September 8, 2005 | 8:00 pm
Are You watching, God?
Have You seen the innocent swept away?
Are You listening, God?
Have You heard their cries?
Be with them, God.
Be their strength and their comfort.
Let them know You are near.
Work through us, God.
Teach us to be Your messengers on earth.
Wake us up, God,...
September 8, 2005 | 8:00 pm
August 25, 2005 | 8:00 pm
When Boy Scout troop 711 from Alaska lost four of its leaders in a freak electrical accident on the first day of the recent National Scout Jamboree here, the one Jewish Scout in the Alaska contingent was left in a quandary.
On the Sunday morning of the gathering, when jamboree...
March 31, 2005 | 7:00 pm
When my friend, Debra, learned that a young man she knew had been in a tragic accident and was comatose, she went to the hospital to visit him every day for three months. No one knew if the man would emerge from his deep, distant sleep, but Debra believed that he would.
March 3, 2005 | 7:00 pm
Growing up religious in Crown Heights, Brooklyn, I didn't have much choice when it came to religious studies: it was full time till I was 18. I always felt it was being shoved down my throat.
So I stayed away from religious studies for about a decade -- from college, through...
February 3, 2005 | 7:00 pm
When my wife and I woke up on the day we made aliyah, we talked and decided that we felt good. Natural. Normal. A little excited. A bit eager. Somewhat tired from some late-night, last-minute packing. Above all, we were ready. It was time to go.
The family dressed in T-shirts that...
January 15, 2004 | 7:00 pm
January 2, 2003 | 7:00 pm
What a year! Struggle and loss, the threat of war, earthquakes and elections. Like many of us, I'd begun to feel as though peace, not to mention peace of mind, was always going to stay just one upheaval away.
And then the man in UPS brown arrived. He brought an envelope containing a...
December 5, 2002 | 7:00 pm
For some, synagogue choreography is as mystifying as opera. To enjoy an opera, though, aficionados know to review the scenes in a libretto before the curtain rises. Yet the typical siddur prayerbook provides no such guidance. "The prayerbook, rather than help them, becomes an...
September 12, 2002 | 8:00 pm
By the time you read this, it's probably too late for me.
To repent, I mean.
You might be reading this on the day before Yom Kippur, or the Day of Atonement itself, and by then -- despite all the rabbinic lore of last-minute deathbed confessions and Indiana Jones-style...
August 8, 2002 | 8:00 pm
We are entering the homestretch. Aug. 9 is the first of Elul, the last month in the Jewish calendar. It is a time when Jews around the world begin to prepare for the High Holy Days by saying prayers called "Selichot." These are prayers to ask forgiveness of God. It is said that...
August 8, 2002 | 8:00 pm
It was a postcard-perfect afternoon outside Kerckhoff Hall on UCLA's campus on Tuesday, Aug. 6., but Debra Bach could not stop crying.
The day before, Bach had been in San Diego attending the funeral of her Hebrew University roommate, Marla Bennett. Now she stood among 150 people...
January 3, 2002 | 7:00 pm
December 6, 2001 | 7:00 pm
Tuesday morning prayers at the girls school of Yeshiva High School of Los Angeles (YULA) took a little longer than usual this week.
It wasn't just the extra Tehillim (Psalms) the high school girls added for their former schoolmate Ariella Feinstein, 20, who was injured in Saturday...
November 29, 2001 | 7:00 pm
Today I received a phone call from an 18-year-old named Steven. Steven and I were scheduled to meet at Starbucks in a few days, prior to his leaving for U.S. military service. He called to let me know that he could not keep our appointment as the Marine Corps insisted that he report...
September 27, 2001 | 8:00 pm
There once was a man who could provide only potatoes for his family's subsistence. As the monotony and the poverty wore on, he prayed, and his prayers were answered. There fell into his hands a mysterious map to a magical Island of Diamonds.
Begging a boat, he set sail on a long and...
August 9, 2001 | 8:00 pm
Three Rabbis were talking over a regular Sunday morning breakfast get-together.
Rabbi Ginsberg said, "We have such a problem with mice at our shul. The shammos sets all kinds of baited traps but they keep coming back. Do either of you learned men know how I can get rid of these...
April 12, 2001 | 8:00 pm
"Entering the Temple of Dreams: Jewish Prayers, Movements and Meditations for the End of the Day" by Tamar Frankiel and Judy Greenfeld. (Jewish Lights Publishing, $16.95)
Jews have a long history of publishing various types of devotional literature. Historically, just as men and...