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Who Was Rabbi Akiva?
Who Was Rabbi Akiva?

Akiva ben Yosef was once an ignorant and illiterate shepherd. So poor and downtrodden a figure was Akiva…

Rabbi Shimon’s Favorite Tree
Rabbi Shimon’s Favorite Tree

On Lag Ba’omer, Jews around the world honor the memory of Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai, a student of Rabbi Akiva who delved into…

Kabbalah and The Divine
Kabbalah and The Divine

While the study of Kabbalah (Jewish mysticism) has always been a part of Torah study, it only gained public prominence in…

Moving Plans
Moving Plans

It is not uncommon to picture the era of the rabbis of the Talmud as a world in which the vast majority of Jews still…

The First Jew in the Colonies
The First Jew in the Colonies

When does American Jewish history begin? Some would say that it begins in 1492, when Columbus…

The Second Passover
The Second Passover

On the first anniversary of the Exodus from Egypt, the Children of Israel prepared to celebrate their first Passover as…

A Town Named Kaplan
A Town Named Kaplan

Southwestern Louisiana is probably one of the last places in America that one would expect to find a town named “Kaplan.” Nevertheless…

Dancing for the Country
Dancing for the Country

Anyone who has ever attended Jewish summer camp has probably spent some time dancing in a…

The Harm of Gluttony
The Harm of Gluttony

For most people, exploring the delightful flavors of the many foods of the world is one of life’s simple but great…

Not the Time for Idle Thoughts
Not the Time for Idle Thoughts

The words of the sages compiled in Pirkei Avot/Ethics of the Fathers have multiple layers of meaning. They can be applied to…

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