The word Hebrew, according to etymological sources, is a transliteration of the word Ivri, which is a descriptive term used for Abraham in Genesis 14:13: “And there came one [from the captives of Sodom] that had escaped, and told Abram the Hebrew…”
One of the main mitzvot of the holiday of Sukkot is the waving of the four species: citron (etrog), palm, myrtle and willow. Trying to understand this mitzvah metaphorically, our sages compared the four species to four different types of Jews:
At this time of the year, Jews around the globe head out in search of the perfect Lulav and Etrog (Lulav refers to the grouping of lulav, hadassim and aravot, which, together with the etrog are referred to as
the four species.) Since the lulav and etrog are used for the mitzvah of waving the four species, it’s important to find a set that is as perfect as can be.
Now that the Jewish people have repented on Yom Kippur and, hopefully, received Divine forgiveness, it is time to sit back and relax…
Food on Yom Kippur? Isn’t Yom Kippur the most famous fast day on the Jewish calendar?
The observance of Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, calls for abstention from five activities: eating, drinking, anointing/washing oneself, wearing leather shoes and marital relations.
Respected Biblical commentators are rarely university professors or radio personalities. Even less common is for them to be female. And while her credentials were certainly not the norm, Nehama Leibowitz was unique beyond even that.
In order to fully understand Yom Kippur, it is important to look deeper at the Jewish concept of teshuva, “repentance.”
On Rosh Hashana, God judges the world (and all the people therein), but their fates are not sealed until 10 days later, on Yom Kippur. It is during these ten days during that we must present a compelling case of our worthiness to the heavenly court.
“I swear that this time I will lose weight”
“I am going to pray every day…”
We make promises all the time. We swear that we are going to do something, and then hope that we will be in a position to fulfill the vow.