How We Build Character

How We Build Character

Jun 14, 2019 By Marjorie Lehman | Commentary | Naso

Parashat Naso begins with the appointment of the Levite families of Gershon and Merari to take care of the Mishkan, the Israelites’ portable sanctuary in the desert. While Aaron and his family were given the responsibility of overseeing the actual service of God in the Mishkan, the descendants of Gershon and Merari were defined as mere helpers, charged with the role of caring for the structure of the Mishkan, its cloths, its equipment, its posts and their sockets, its planks, pegs, and furnishings.

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From Sarah to Mrs. Portnoy

From Sarah to Mrs. Portnoy

Oct 10, 2017 By Marjorie Lehman | Commentary

From Sarah in the Bible to Philip Roth’s Mrs. Portnoy, images of the mother have been a hallmark of Jewish culture. Hallowed by some, excoriated by others—mothers have been depicted, on the one hand, as all that is good and sacred in the Jewish family, and, on the other, and far more frequently, as overbearing, guilt-inducing, and interfering.

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En Yaaqov: Jacob Ibn Habib’s Search for Faith in the Talmudic Corpus

En Yaaqov: Jacob Ibn Habib’s Search for Faith in the Talmudic Corpus

Feb 7, 2012 By Marjorie Lehman | Public Event audio

Dr. Marjorie Lehman discusses the research behind her book The En Yaaqov: Jacob Ibn Habib’s Search for Faith in the Talmudic Corpus during a Library Book Talk at JTS in January. The book examines the tumultuous period surrounding the origins and development of the En Yaaqov, an early 16th-century collection of Talmudic Aggadah, and the En Yaaqov’s journey to the present as one of the most enduring texts of Judaism. Dr. Lehman argues that the experiences of Ibn Habib, its compiler, a Jew exiled from Spain in 1492, prompted him to make decisions not only about how the Talmud should be studied in the name of spiritual restoration, but also about how Jews could survive future expulsions by cultivating a sustainable faithful relationship with God.

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How We Build Character

How We Build Character

Jun 4, 2011 By Marjorie Lehman | Commentary | Naso

Parashat Naso begins with the appointment of the Levite families of Gershon and Merari to take care of the Mishkan, the Israelites’ portable sanctuary in the desert. While Aaron and his family were given the responsibility of overseeing the actual service of God in the Mishkan, the descendants of Gershon and Merari were defined as mere helpers, charged with the role of caring for the structure of the Mishkan, its cloths, its equipment, its posts and their sockets, its planks, pegs, and furnishings. I have always wondered—why did God divide up the care of the Mishkan in this way?

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