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Tag: Rituals

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  • Shabbat Shalom!

    Rabbi Elaine Rose Glickman

    November 1, 2013 | 5:46 am

    I was cleaning out my hard drive earlier this week (yay, me) and found a treasure trove - a stash of photos and videos from when my kids were small. A little head peeping out from a bubble bath, a teeny figure bundled into snow pants, a baby sleeping under the afghan my grandmother...

  • The Secular Bar Mitzvah

    By Annie Korzen

    August 22, 2011 | 12:46 pm

    Coming-of-age rituals are a part of growing up.  They exist in every culture: christenings, communions, sweet-sixteens, quinceaneras, debutante balls – whatever.  They can all take a bite out of your wallet. But, thrifty as we are, that is not the main reason we did not give our...

  • A World Record Bris

    By Lauren Bottner

    May 9, 2011 | 3:42 pm

    Every bris I’ve been to only had one screaming baby followed by a shmorgasborg of bagels and lox, mimosas, and mingling.  The ratio of surgical patients and onlookers has always been severly skewed – one crying baby to hoards of relatives and family friends. Apparently that’s...

  • Obituaries

    August 7, 2008 | 2:32 am

    June Walker, Presidents Conference Chair and Hadassah Leader, Dies at 74

    June Walker was in working mode two weeks ago.

    On July 21, she presided over a farewell reception for outgoing Israeli U.N. Ambassador Dan Gillerman. Two days later she led a meeting of the Conference of...

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  • Married . . . at last!

    By Mierel Verbit

    October 26, 2006 | 8:00 pm

    I got married for the first time at 50. The groom was 51. Yes, we are both Jewish. We met online. I am tall, thin, blonde, green-eyed, and have a little turned-up nose. My father-in-law's first comment, across the Thanksgiving table, was, "Doesn't she look like a shiksa?"

    My...

  • Just One Shabbat

    By Amy Klein

    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...

  • The Greatest Game

    By Susan Freudenheim

    January 12, 2006 | 7:00 pm

    We sat at my sister-in-law's kitchen table, 11 of us from three generations of my husband's family, absorbed by a wicked game of dreidel on the fifth night of Chanukah, howling with abandon and anticipation at each seemingly endless spin. My 10-year-old daughter, the youngest...

  • ‘Tis Never the Season for Chrismukkah

    By Jane Ulman

    December 22, 2005 | 7:00 pm

    On Dec. 25, Rod Shapiro and Pat Wong will exchange Christmas and Chanukah gifts spread under a seven-foot Christmas tree. They will listen to carols sung by Johnny Mathis and Chanukah songs by the Klezmatics.

    In the evening, this interfaith couple in their mid-50s, married two...

  • The Best Presents: Ritual and Repetition

    By Sharon Duke Estroff

    December 22, 2005 | 7:00 pm

    During my family's annual Thanksgiving beach road trip this year, my kids showed remarkable stamina for tolerating monotony as they watched the "Rugrats' Chanukah" video 12 times in a row. I was about to inquire how they could manage to consistently laugh like fiends each time they...

  • Chabad Menorahs Gain Acceptance

    By Chanan Tigay

    December 22, 2005 | 7:00 pm

    Ten years ago, the American Jewish Congress (AJCongress) sued the city of Beverly Hills to block the local Chabad house from erecting a 27-foot menorah in a public park near City Hall. Displaying the menorah -- a Jewish religious symbol -- on public property, the AJCongress argued,...

  • Mama Said…

    By Lori Gottlieb

    June 9, 2005 | 8:00 pm

    Taking relationship advice from your Jewish mother is like heeding a shiksa friend's advice about curly hair gel. It's not their area.

    Besides, your mom has an agenda: to get you married. Sure, she wants you to be happy. But in her mind, the two may or may not coincide. Consider the...

  • The Blessing of Bibhilu

    By Rabbi Daniel Bouskila

    April 21, 2005 | 8:00 pm

     

    A book's opening chapter is crucial to setting the mood and aura for the remainder of the book's journey. Likewise, the opening scene of a film usually helps set the tone for what will ensue.

    The Passover seder is both a reader's experience and a moviegoer's. We sit around the...

  • Shabbat on Slopes Takes Wrong Turn

    By David T. Levinson

    February 3, 2005 | 7:00 pm

     

    To me, skiing is almost a religious experience. When you're flying down the back bowls, sun on your face, cool air filling your lungs and a warm feeling filling your heart, it's like you can feel the hand of God.

    Last winter, my wife and I went skiing in Deer Valley, Utah.

    Deer...

  • Give Your Sukkah a Shot of Style

    By Keren Engelberg

    September 23, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    After the high of the High Holidays, twice-a-year Jews hang up their kippot for another 354 days, or so, and in the process miss out on the lesser-known treat of Sukkot. While not a "High" holiday anymore, Sukkot used to be one of the big three back in the time of the First Temple....

  • Ease Your Kids Into Holiday Services

    By Sharon Schatz Rosenthal

    September 16, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    I was tired, I was bored and I hated wearing pantyhose. I stood up and sat down at the right times, and even hummed along to the some of the prayers. But in my head I was replaying scenes from my favorite movies and wishing I was home playing video games.

    Ah, the High Holidays. The...

  • Are Cell Phones Ever Cool in Shul?

    By Annabelle Stevens

    September 16, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    A few weeks ago, I was at a funeral at Mount Sinai in Glendale when, at one of the most emotional moments, a cell phone rang loudly for several minutes, humming a Broadway tune. Attendees fumbled into their handbags and pockets to check if they were the culprit. The cell phone...

  • Shavuot: A Link to God

    By Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson

    May 6, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    "Why is the festival of Shavuot called 'The time of the giving of our Torah' and not the time of the receiving of our Torah? Because the giving of the Torah happened at one specified time, but the receiving of the Torah happens at every time and in every generation. -- Rabbi Meir...

  • Groups Celebrate Seders With a Cause

    By Gaby Wenig

    April 8, 2004 | 8:00 pm

    At Jewish Family Service's Freedom Seder, participants read from a haggadah that was just a little bit different. Instead of reading of the four sons, those at the Freedom Seder read about the "four community members."

    "The wise community member asks, 'How can we, as individuals,...

  • The Next Generation Adds Its Own Touch to Seder

    By Julie G Fax

    April 1, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    When newer, color versions supplanted the 1923 Union Haggadah Revised, Tamar Soloff's brother and father hoarded enough copies of the original to ensure that their extended families would have a supply of their own.

    "That was the haggadah from my childhood," Soloff said. After...

  • The Sedermakers

    By Julie G Fax

    April 1, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    It's not that Jeanne Weiner wanted Aunt Leonie's Indian Tree dishes for herself. She hadn't used the hand-painted china in five years -- since just before her husband died -- and last Passover she was on the verge of giving the entire service for 31 to her daughter Joelle Keene, who...

  • A Superhero Dreams

    By Brendan Howard

    April 1, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    When friendly strangers find out I'm a convert to Judaism, they want to know why.

    And I've learned to be ready.

    I have two stories: One is

    respectable, and one involves comic books and video games.

    The first is the one I bring out for casual conversations, for puzzled strangers and...

  • Menopause Goes Mainstream

    By Nancy Sokoler Steiner

    January 29, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    After years of being talked about in hushed tones as "the change of life" -- or not being talked about at all -- menopause is now in the spotlight. Two recent plays, "Is it Hot in Here ... Or Is it Me?" and "Menopause the Musical" literally put menopause center stage. A support group...

  • Faith Holds Fast

    By Neil Steinberg

    January 15, 2004 | 7:00 pm

    Almost every Friday afternoon for the last few months, I've been visited at my office by a pair of young Chasidic Jews -- high school students in big black hats and sporting the wispy beginnings of what I am certain will someday be fine beards.

    "Howdy boys," I say, welcoming them.

    ...

  • Lights Were Last to Go

    By Kathleen Vallee Stein

    December 25, 2003 | 7:00 pm

    My family never went to church but celebrated Christian holidays by putting up a Christmas tree in December and hunting for Easter eggs in the spring. I had lots of fun as a child and counted myself lucky that I didn't have to spend long, boring hours at church like the other kids.

    ...
  • Turn the Tide

    By Rob Eshman

    September 25, 2003 | 8:00 pm

    One of the best things about being the editor of a Jewish paper is I get to meet a lot of Jews.

    Looking back over the past year, I see it's a fascinating perk of the job.

    Just in the past two weeks, for instance, I danced (poorly) at the Chabad Telethon when the tote board hit $3.4...

  • Finding Community

    By Hank Rosenfeld

    September 25, 2003 | 8:00 pm

    Synagogue is never mentioned in the Torah. -- Leo Rosten

    Like many unaffiliated Angelenos between 30 and marriage, I face a problem every Rosh: How to benefit from this diverse Jewish community while remaining a sort of post-sect/noninstitutionalized member of the family. Intending...

  • Remembering Dad During Days of Awe

    By Lisa J. Solomon

    September 4, 2003 | 8:00 pm

    This Rosh Hashanah brings to a close the year in which my father died. For this reason, and many others, I am grateful that the Jewish New Year is marked not by parties, but by days and weeks preceding and following of self-evaluation, quiet contemplation and prayers for blessings in...

  • Seder at Bubbie’s

    By Shoshana Lewin-Fischer

    April 3, 2003 | 7:00 pm

    Mah Nishtanah Ha Lila HaZeh Mikol HaLeilot?

    Why is this night different from all other nights?

    On all other nights I'm required to act like a 25-year-old adult, but on this first night -- being the youngest person at my seder table -- I get to be a kid.

    For the last seven years,...

  • Sweet Memories of Broken Matzah

    By Lisa J. Solomon

    April 3, 2003 | 7:00 pm

    My great-grandmother, Gouda, escaped Germany by boat at night when she was in her 60s. My grandfather, Opa, fled with her and his wife and two small children when he was 42. Both lived long, energetic, brave lives in their adopted country: she, chasing her great grandchildren around...

  • It’s Passover Time Down Under, Mate

    By Linda Morel

    April 3, 2003 | 7:00 pm

    Because Australia is situated below the equator, its seasons rebel against the Jewish calendar. Our winter is their summer; our spring their fall. Although Passover's rituals and symbols resonate spring, the holiday is celebrated in autumn Down Under.

    "Passover begins just as the...

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