Being Raised from the Pit

Being Raised from the Pit

Dec 23, 2016 By Simeon Cohen | Commentary | Vayeshev | Hanukkah

Three years ago, Jewish novelist Dara Horn published her fourth novel, A Guide for the Perplexed. Borrowing its title from Maimonides’s quintessential work of Jewish philosophy, the book follows two sisters, Josephine and Judith, as they struggle with issues of faith, reason, memory, and sibling rivalry. Josephine and Judith serve as stand-ins for Joseph and Judah; in a sense, the novel functions as an extended midrash on a key biblical incident which can be found in this week’s parashah, Vayeshev: the casting of Joseph into the pit at the hands of his brothers. Ultimately, Horn’s Josephine and the biblical Joseph arrive at the same conclusion: through suffering, which both characters experience in their respective tales, one can ultimately come to achieve greatness.

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Hanukkah Nights

Hanukkah Nights

Dec 24, 2016 By David Hoffman | Collected Resources | Text Study | Hanukkah

A text, insight, and discussion question for each night of Hanukkah.

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Al Hanissim

Al Hanissim

Dec 10, 2014 By The Jewish Theological Seminary | Prayer Recordings | Hanukkah

In preparation for Hanukkah, we are excited to share a recording of Al Hanissim, composed by Mike Boxer of the Jewish a cappella group Six13 and performed by the Chorus of the H. L. Miller Cantorial School and College of Jewish Music.

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The Symbolism of Light

The Symbolism of Light

Dec 27, 2003 By Lauren Eichler Berkun | Commentary | Hanukkah

As the menorah shines with all eight candles on this Shabbat Hanukkah, I am inspired to reflect on the powerful spiritual metaphor of light in the Jewish tradition.

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The Refuge of Judaism

The Refuge of Judaism

Dec 8, 2001 By Ismar Schorsch | Commentary | Vayeshev | Hanukkah

In his richly thoughtful one-volume History of the Jews in Modern Times, Professor Lloyd P. Gartner observes that “few Jews in the world of 1950 lived in the city or country where their grandparents had lived in 1880” (p. 213). Like the rest of the world, Jews in the nineteenth and twentieth centuries were on the move, to burgeoning cities in the countries where they lived or to lands abroad that beckoned with opportunity. By 1915, the Jewish population in the United States had mushroomed from 280,000 to 3,197,000.

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How to Be Righteous

How to Be Righteous

Dec 3, 2015 By Adam Zagoria-Moffet | Short Video | Hanukkah

The purely righteous do not complain about darkness, but increase light. They don’t complain about evil, but increase justice. They don’t complain about heresy, but increase faith. They don’t complain about ignorance, but increase wisdom.

Rabbi Abraham Isaac Kook, Arpilei Tohar (1914), p. 2.

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Revolutionaries at Home

Revolutionaries at Home

Dec 3, 2015 By Alisa Braun | Short Video | Hanukkah

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The Story of We

The Story of We

Dec 3, 2015 By Stephanie Ruskay | Short Video | Hanukkah

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