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Go Wash Your Hands
June 24, 2011 – 6:53 am
Go Wash Your Hands

Mothers always instruct their children to wash their hands before supper. After all, children play in unclean places, touch strange objects and suck their thumbs, so their hands definitely need to be washed before they touch any food. In a Jewish household, however, the request for a child to wash his/her hands might only be an indicator that the child is about to eat bread.

The Importance of Circumcision
June 23, 2011 – 7:38 am
The Importance of Circumcision

This coming November, the people of San Francisco will vote on a referendum to make it a misdemeanor to circumcise any male under the age of 18. And while many Americans were surprised by the proposal, and great debates are raging on the internet, if the referendum passes, this will certainly not be the first time that circumcision has been outlawed. The most famous prohibition of circumcision occurred during the rule of the Syrian-Greeks during the era of the Maccabees. At that time, however, circumcision was actually a capital offense.

Robyn and Eli
June 22, 2011 – 12:14 pm
Robyn and Eli

“Though I was guarded… he won me over and we were engaged to be married only one day shy of our 6 month anniversary.”

Cantor vs. Rabbi: Who Should Join You Under the Chuppah?
June 22, 2011 – 11:57 am
Cantor vs. Rabbi: Who Should Join You Under the Chuppah?

By Jewish law, all that’s required to make a marriage official is a ketubah and a couple of witnesses. A Jewishly knowledgeable person who steers the wedding rituals can “officiate” the chuppah ceremony and oversee the ketubah ceremony. Also according to Jewish law, you need two kosher witnesses, who, depending on your Jewish affiliation, can be either men or women, related or not to the bride and groom, and practice varying degrees of Jewish observance including the laws of kashrut (eating and keeping kosher). If you have a family rabbi, this would be something to clarify before the wedding day to make sure you’re following correct laws and traditions. As long as your ceremony officiate is ordained by your state, he or she can guide the ceremony for it to count Jewishly and civilly. The ceremony, if it is religious-based, simply requires a license that is filed with the secular authorities (your state) and it ends up fulfilling both secular and Jewish law.

The Missing Ark
June 22, 2011 – 7:19 am
The Missing Ark

Mention the Ark of the Covenant and most people think of Raiders of the Lost Ark, the 1981 movie starring Harrison Ford. The real Ark of the Covenant, created concurrently with the other vessels of the Mishkan (Tabernacle), was placed in the Holy of Holies of the First Temple by King Solomon. The question of the present location of the Ark is debated by the sages. When the Babylonians conquered Jerusalem and destroyed the Temple, was the Ark taken into captivity by the Babylonians or was it hidden?

Marisa and Jared
June 21, 2011 – 1:37 pm | One Comment
Marisa and Jared

After an incredible seven hour first date, Jared sent me a text message first thing in the morning, letting me know he had a great time and would love to get together again.”

No Sin For The Humble
June 21, 2011 – 6:37 am
No Sin For The Humble

Unfortunately, it would not be difficult to write a list of powerful men whose careers have been toppled by the scandal of adultery. Alas, we often say, sarcastically, what more can one expect of politicians, sports stars, celebrities, etc? The connection between wealth and power to the vice of adultery is, sadly, nothing new. “Rabbi Hiyya Ben Abbas said in the name of Rabbi Yochanan: Every man in whom is haughtiness of spirit will in the end stumble through an [unfaithful] married woman” (Sotah 4b).

Angela and Derek
June 20, 2011 – 11:59 am | One Comment
Angela and Derek

On the same day that Derek and I had our marathon first date in Orlando, his sister Alexis had her first date with Andrew in NYC. By coincidence, they had also met on JDate.  Alexis and Andrew married last November on almost the same date we will wed this year!

Don’t Wake Dad
June 20, 2011 – 3:05 am
Don’t Wake Dad

You receive a telephone call offering you ten million dollars; all you have to do is go upstairs and wake your father from his mid-day nap. Who’d hesitate?

Zucchini Blossoms
June 17, 2011 – 2:01 pm
Zucchini Blossoms

Firm and fresh blossoms that are only slightly open are cooked to be eaten, with pistils removed from female flowers, and stamens removed from male flowers. The stem on the flowers can be retained as a way of giving the cook something to hold onto during cooking, rather than injuring the delicate petals, or they can be removed prior to cooking, or prior to serving. There are a variety of recipes in which the flowers may be deep fried as fritters or tempura (after dipping in a light tempura batter), stuffed, sautéed, baked, or used in soups.

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