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Jewish Journal

  • Binary vision isn’t healthy: Parashat Balak (Numbers 22:2-25:9)

    By Rabbi Joshua Levine Grater

    1 week ago

    Do you remember the classic 1980s film “The Breakfast Club”? It was a favorite of mine as a teen and made a lasting impression on me. The short summary is that a bunch of high-schoolers get weekend detention together in the school library with very little supervision and go from...

  • Torah portion: Time flies

    By Rabbi Lisa Edwards

    2 weeks ago

    I attended a memorial for a beloved colleague recently, and his widow remembered how at funerals he would invite people not to look at the birth and death dates on memorial plaques and grave markers, but to focus on the dash between the dates — that’s the part that matters. 

    This...

  • Torah Portion: Living with clergy killers

    By Rabbi Dov Fischer

    3 weeks ago

    Korach is a fascinating Torah portion because, as happens so often when the Torah narrates real-life events, the characters ring incredibly true. We all know superficially good people who have so much going for them, yet who propel themselves down a horrific course of...

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  • The big choice

    by Rabbi Michael Barclay

    June 11, 2014 | 9:16 am

    I’ve always held the belief that if three or more diverse cultures have the same teaching, that teaching may be worthwhile and worth exploring. Nearly every tradition in the world teaches that all personal choices are, at their deepest level, based on choosing between faith and...

  • Baseless discontent

    by Rabbi Avivah W. Erlick

    June 4, 2014 | 10:17 am

    I like to have a derash in my pocket with an addiction/recovery theme when I visit Jewish inmates in the county jail, and I’ve got to tell you, Beha’alotecha is the perfect one to do this. 

    Found in the book of Numbers, this parasha features a memorable scene in which the...

  • A mathematician’s dream blessing

    Rabbi Paul Kipnes

    May 28, 2014 | 11:07 am

    Two, 4, 6, 8 … What comes next? Once you recognize this as a sequence of even numbers, counted by twos, then you know that the numbers 10 and 12 come next.

    Two, 3, 5, 7, 11 … What comes next? This sequence of prime numbers (numbers divisible only by themselves and 1) continues...

  • Who counts?

    By Rabbi Laura Geller

    May 21, 2014 | 10:43 am

    For the past five weeks, the entire Jewish community has been counting … counting the days between Passover and Shavuot, the anniversary of the day we received Torah. This linking of Passover and receiving Torah reminds us that our exodus from Egypt wasn’t only about our own...

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