The Terrifying Third Aliyah of Behukkotai

The Terrifying Third Aliyah of Behukkotai

May 31, 2024 By Marcus Mordecai Schwartz | Commentary | Behukkotai | Shavuot

Why do we continue to read such horrible curses, and another passage much like it in Parashat Ki Tavo (Deut. 28:1–68), each year? The simplest answer is that we read the entirety of the Torah each year, omitting nothing. However, the Mishnah (Megillah 3:6) already notes something special about the curses of the Leviticus passage: “The section of curses must not be broken up but must all be read by one person.”

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Holidays

Holidays

By The Jewish Theological Seminary | Collected Resources | Hanukkah | Pesah | Purim | Rosh Hashanah | Shavuot | Shemini Atzeret | Simhat Torah | Sukkot | Tishah Be'av | Yom Hashoah | Yom Hazikaron-Yom Ha'atzma'ut | Yom Kippur

Explore these sources from scholars and students at JTS to enrich your holiday experience.

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Psalm 19

Psalm 19

Translation by Dr. Benjamin D. Sommer, Professor of Bible and Ancient Semitic Languages, JTS. Find more on Dr. Sommer’s thoughts on this psalm which is recited on Shavuot here. The skies recount God’s splendor                               the expanse above proclaims His handiwork.                      One day utters a word to the next,                               one night conveys […]

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How Should We Know God?

How Should We Know God?

May 25, 2023 By Benjamin D. Sommer | Commentary | Shavuot

It’s well known that Jewish tradition assigns specific readings from the Torah and the Prophets for all the holidays. Less well known are several traditions that assign holiday readings from the Book of Psalms.[1] An Ashkenazic tradition associated with Rabbi Elijah, the Vilna Gaon (1720–1797), assigns Psalm 19 for recitation at the end of the Musaf service on the first day of Shavuot. This psalm deals with an appropriate question for the holiday of revelation: How do we come to know about God and God’s will?

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Shavuot Learning

Shavuot Learning

EXPLORE THESE SOURCES FROM SCHOLARS AND STUDENTS AT THEJEWISH THEOLOGICAL SEMINARY TO ENRICH YOUR SHAVUOT EXPERIENCE. These nine images are part of one illumination that depicts Moses receiving the law. It comes from a 15th Century Manuscript, The Rothschild Mahzor, which is part of JTS Special Collections. You can learn more here about the image […]

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Trope & Nusah

Trope & Nusah

Trope Recordings by Cantor Sarah Levine (CS ’17). For the Book of Ruth Festival Nusah (Lower Voice) Recordings by Rabbi and Hazzan Seth AdelsonProject coordinator: Rabbi David Freidenreich Festival Ma’ariv Festival Shaharit Festival Musaf Festival Nusah (Higher Voice) Recordings by Cantor Arianne BrownProject coordinator: Rabbi David Freidenreich Festival Ma’ariv Festival Shaharit Festival Musaf

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Your God is My God

Your God is My God

With these words, Ruth takes on Naomi’s religion. Ruth is emblematic of the process of becoming a Jew and these texts illuminate both her model and others of conversion. TEXT Love for All (Judith Hauptman): The commandment to love the stranger as yourself as a connection to conversion at Sinai Video Insight on Conversion from […]

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Gleanings

Gleanings

“Ruth came and gleaned in a field, behind the reapers, and as luck would have it, it was the piece of land belonging to Boaz, who was of Elimelech’s [Naomi’s late husband’s] family” (Ruth 2:3). Text Leftover Scraps (Julia Andelman): Using Millet’s painting, The Gleaners, to highlight the mitzvah of leaving the corners of fields and […]

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