The very last act performed before bringing Shabbat into the home is the lighting of the Shabbat candles. While this mitzvah is considered one of the three primary mitzvot of a Jewish woman, Shabbat candles may also be lit by a man.
The classic courtroom image portrays a witness standing in the dock, right hand raised and left hand resting gently on the Bible. The witness is then asked: “Do you solemnly swear to tell the truth, the whole truth, and nothing but the truth, so help you God?”
In Hebrew, one word can say so much. For instance, hineni. This seemingly simple phrase is understood as a powerful statement of a person’s state of mind. Literally, it is translated: “Here I am.” It is a statement first pronounced in the Torah by Abraham, and it underscores one of the essential differences between Adam and Abraham.
In 1980, Barry Commoner, a prominent biologist, environmentalist and author of Jewish parentage, ran as a candidate for the President of the United States. As the third party candidate for the Citizens Party (which he founded), Commoner garnered .25% of the vote. While a few hundred thousand votes may seem like nothing among the millions of potential votes, his true goal was to raise the nation’s consciousness to the need for societal reform to benefit the environment.
The Jewish dietary laws prohibit Jews from eating any food products derived from animals that do not have both split hooves and chew their cud. It is not an uncommon assumption that Jews are forbidden, as well, to touch objects made from non-kosher animals. However, the fact of the matter is that if a Jewish football fan came upon an actual pigskin football (originally the game was played with an inflated pig bladder) that Jew would have no issue picking it up and taking a toss.
In the early twentieth century, one of the critical political battles was the fight for women’s right to vote. Among the suffragist organizations of Great Britain, there arose a unique organization known as The Jewish League for Woman Suffrage (JLWS).
As few members of the British aristocracy have converted to Judaism, the conversion of Lord George Gordon* (1751 – 1793) was a matter of note in British society.
To much of the American populace, tonight [Halloween] is a night of goblins and ghouls, vampires and witches. These monsters are actually characters found in old myths and fairytales.
“It was taught: There is no measure [of reward] for visiting the sick. What is meant by, ‘there is no measure for visiting the sick?’ Rabbi Joseph thought to explain that: Its reward is unlimited…. Rabbi Abba son of Rabbi Hanina said: He who visits an invalid takes away a sixtieth of his pain” (Nedarim 39b).
On 13 MarCheshvan, 1960, Rabbi Haim Nahum Effendi passed away in Cairo, and thousands of people – Jews, Muslims and Christians – attended his funeral.