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Jewish Journal

Tag: Ritual

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  • Pew’s construct of “Jews of no religion” is imprecise and misleading

    Roger Price

    December 12, 2013 | 3:14 pm

    Of the many interesting aspects of the recently released survey of Jewish Americans by the Pew Research Center (the “Pew Portrait”), perhaps none is more troubling than the distorted bisection  of American Jews into two primary sub-groups, one labeled “Jews by religion” and the...

  • Give Polish Jewry a kosher choice

    July 31, 2013 | 1:51 pm

    Remember “Had Gadya”? What satisfaction when, onto the scene of carnage, walks the Holy One of Blessing, and destroys the angel of death that slew the butcher that killed the ox that drank the water that quenched the fire that burned the stick that beat the dog that bit the cat...

  • Taharah for Gentiles?

    By Susan Esther Barnes

    May 1, 2013 | 8:00 am

    Kavod v’Nichum, the organization that assists chevra kadisha groups, synagogues and others regarding mitzvot concerning chaplaincy, burial, mourning, and related topics, recently hosted a webinar titled, “Ritual Washing for Non-Jews After Death.” The webinar presenters were two...

  • German Parliament passes law guaranteeing legality of ritual circumcision

    December 12, 2012 | 10:58 am

    The German Parliament passed a law protecting the right of Jewish and Muslim parents to choose a ritual circumcision for their sons, after months of heated debate over efforts to ban the practice.

    In all, 434 legislators voted Wednesday for the new law proposed by the federal...

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  • European rabbis protest circumcision bans, plan to lobby

    July 25, 2012 | 10:45 am

    The Conference of European Rabbis will lobby against recent circumcision bans by advocating legislation supporting the practice.

    This week, hospitals in Switzerland and a province of Austria announced that they would stop allowing ritual circumcision.

    The German lower house of...

  • Germany’s Jews won’t be punished for circumcisions

    July 13, 2012 | 9:52 am

    Germany’s Jews and Muslims will not be punished for breaking the law if they carry out circumcisions on young boys, Chancellor Angela Merkel’s spokesman said.

    “For everyone in the government it is absolutely clear that we want to have Jewish and Muslim religious life in...

  • Rabbis to meet in Berlin to protest circumcision ban

    July 9, 2012 | 5:32 pm

    Jewish religious leaders will hold an international meeting in Berlin on Tuesday to discuss how to respond to a German court ruling against performing circumcision on baby boys, which also sparked protests from Muslims and Christians in Germany.

    A court in the western city of...

  • Dutch Senate to appoint ritual slaughter commission

    December 21, 2011 | 10:22 am

    The Dutch Senate has delayed its vote on banning ritual slaughter and will appoint a commission to study putting new standards for such slaughter into place.

    Undersecretary for Agriculture Henk Bleker said Wednesday that he will appoint the commission to establish standards for...

  • Anti-circumcision:  Is this equal to anti-Semitism?

    By Norman Lavin, M.D, PhD., UCLA Medical School

    June 30, 2011 | 11:46 am

    Believe it or not, an American city, San Francisco, is voting to proscribe one of the central rituals of an entire religious community, the Jewish people, who have been circumcising male infants since the time of Abraham.  Many Muslims, of course, also practice circumcision for...

  • Proposed Dutch ban on ritual slaughter is unfair, ill advised

    April 12, 2011 | 1:52 pm

    Animal rights or Jewish rites? That is the question this week before the Tweede Kamer, the lower house of the Dutch parliament, as it considers a bill that effectively would prohibit shechitah, the Jewish ritual slaughter of animals.

    According to the Jewish Historical Museum in...

  • Who shall live and who shall die: God’s iPhone, Rosh Hashanah 5769

    September 26, 2008 | 11:49 pm

    ALTTEXT

    On Rosh Hashanah it is inscribed,
    And on Yom Kippur it is sealed.
    How many shall pass away and how many shall be born,
    Who shall live and who shall die,
    Who shall reach the end of his days and who shall not,
    Who shall perish by water and who by fire,
    Who by sword and who by wild...

  • Is our fate really sealed? Is change possible?

    By Marty Kaplan

    September 25, 2008 | 3:19 am

    These are nervous-making times.

    No, I'm not talking about the damage the capital campaign may do to you, or -- at my temple, anyway -- whether you'll find a parking place for services, which is enough to make anyone want to reach for a Xanax.

    What I mean is this protracted season...
  • The very best Tashlich custom is a toss-up

    By Rachel Heller

    September 25, 2008 | 2:43 am

    On paper, the Rosh Hashanah ritual of Tashlich is about doffing one's sins to start the new year with a clean slate. For Jason Mauro, 16, it's also about beach football.

    Every year since he was 8, Mauro and his friends at Temple Israel of Hollywood have marked the afternoon...

  • VIDEO: Kids make shofars with Chabad in South Carolina

    By The Web Guy

    September 23, 2008 | 2:59 am

    65 Jewish children from Columbia, S.C. learn how to make a shofar with Rabbi Levi Marrus. 

    The Gipsy Kings, we think, only sing in the video.

     

  • Mom’s final resting places—a cremation story

    By Ellie Kahn

    August 7, 2008 | 3:18 pm

    If you are offended either by the idea of cremation or humor about the dead, you may want to stop reading. It's OK.

    Maybe you weren't raised (as I was) by a woman who had no short-term memory for several years before she died, but retained a sharp and sick sense of humor --...

  • Shuls to observe Tisha B’Av through study, films

    August 6, 2008 | 11:23 pm

    Tisha B'Av -- the ninth day of the month of Av -- is a day of fasting and mourning to commemorate some of the greatest tragedies to befall the Jewish people, among them the destruction of both Holy Temples in Jerusalem and the expulsion from Spain in 1492. But despite this litany of...
  • Write your own dirge for Tisha B’Av 2008

    July 29, 2008 | 4:15 am

    Jewish tradition teaches that we are commanded to write a Torah in our lifetime, but not a kinah, or dirge. For ages, our prophets and rabbis have done this for us, filtering and distancing, putting our most painful group memories into acrostic, poetic form.

    Beginning with Eicha...

  • Yesterday’s Ashes

    By Rabbi Dan Shevitz

    March 20, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    What do you do with yesterday's holiness?

    Everything has a shelf life, even holiness. Only God is eternal. Ancient forms and rituals give way to new interpretations. The Tent of Meeting gave way to the Mishkan, which in turn gave way to the Temple and, later, the synagogue....

  • Unique party planning isn’t chopped liver

    By Michele Alperin

    March 13, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    Some things never change, or do they? Bar and bat mitzvah parties overwhelmingly follow a recipe that everyone assumes is written in stone, said Gail Greenberg, creator of mitzvahchic.com. The only room for creativity, people think, is to have a unique theme.

    So why are people stuck?...

  • Will ‘Bro Mitzvah’ find roots in African American community?

    By Jane Ulman

    March 13, 2008 | 6:00 pm

    Decked out in a black tuxedo, a brimmed hat set fashionably on his head, Douglas LeVandia Ulmer Jr., better known as DJ, walked down the aisle to the beat of two African drummers.

    This was the night of his 16th birthday, and his mother, Lillie Hill, was celebrating his coming of age...

  • Finding the sacred in the mundane

    By Amy Klein

    February 14, 2008 | 5:00 pm

    My grandparents were not big readers. Their English was slightly accented but fluent -- they both left Poland in their early teens and came to America in the 1920s. But like many Orthodox Jews of their generation, when they had "leisure" time (although I'm not sure they knew the...
  • Sukkot Man

    By Rob Eshman

    September 20, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    I have perfectly normal, respectable friends -- doctors, producers, financiers -- who every year slip into something more comfortable and head down to Burning Man.

    About 25,000 gather for one week each year in Nevada's Black Rock Desert to create "an experimental community"...

  • Yichud—a romantic oasis

    By Sharon Schatz Rosenthal

    April 19, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Jennifer Tralins' wedding on a private beach near Miami was picture perfect, from the warm sand under her bare feet to the sweet sounds of the flute as she walked down the aisle in an elegant beaded gown. But for the bride, the most memorable aspect of the ceremony was her yichud,...
  • The seder offers 15 steps toward empowerment

    By Rabbi Michael Gotlieb

    March 29, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    Fifteen steps or ritual components make up the Passover seder.

    Knowing that in advance can empower your guests and everyone else gathered around the dinner table. Most haggadot list the 15 steps at the beginning of the text. Think of it as a key, or GPS, to help you navigate...

  • Silencing Passover

    By David Suissa

    March 29, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    You'll have to forgive me this week if I get all wistful and spiritual on you, but there's something about Passover I need to get off my chest.

    I have a question for my readers. How many of you have been so moved by a Passover experience that something inside of you changed?

    I ask...

  • A Place at the Table

    By Rabbi David Baron

    March 29, 2007 | 8:00 pm

    A few years ago I invited a Mormon family to our seder. The presence of non-Jewish guests in our home changed the dynamic in many ways, not the least of which was our newfound enthusiasm for giving clear and thorough explanations of the rituals we observe each year. This Mormon...
  • Sacramento PBS TV affiliate won’t run anti-Semitism documentary

    By Joe Eskenazi

    January 18, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    David Hosley thinks a scene in which a group of devious Jews slash the throat of a young boy in a ritual slaughter to cull his blood for Passover matzah is not the type of thing that should be shown on television. Yitzhak Santis thinks it's exactly what we should be seeing. Santis...
  • Time warp again? Take a step toward tradition

    By Judy Gruen

    January 11, 2007 | 7:00 pm

    When I think back to my bat mitzvah 30-plus years ago, here's what I remember most: following the photographer's prompts as I posed against the tree in the synagogue courtyard, standing nervously on the bimah chanting my Torah portion, and giving a speech in which I excoriated...
  • Alter Kayakers make waves in Newport Bay

    By Barry Zwick

    December 21, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    Every Thursday morning, 11 supremely fit old men come thundering into Newport Bay, rounding up all the good rental kayaks on the Balboa Peninsula and singing at the top of their lungs.

    Most are major fundraisers for Heritage Pointe, Orange County's Home for the Jewish Aging, and...

  • Fry the latkes, try the gingerbread

    By Wendy Mogel

    December 21, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    In a second-grade classroom I visited recently, the children were comparing how many presents they were going to receive for Christmas. When they finished, Sarah announced, "I don't celebrate Christmas, I celebrate Chanukah. We get eight presents every night for eight nights."

    Even...

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