The Holy Land Through American Eyes

December 31, 2017

Aaron Leibel | Jewish News | Washington Jewish Week

american interests

There’s the Kotel, the Western Wall, in 1859, not much different than it is today. There are tourists outside Jerusalem in 1867. There are Polish Jews staring into a camera in 1867, while their counterparts from Yemen do the same in 1900.

These photographs and dozens of others, culled from the Library of Congress online collection and the digital collections of many other libraries and institutions, are the heart of “American Interests in the Holy Land Revealed in Early Photographs From 1840 to 1940.” It was cobbled together by Lenny Ben-David, former deputy chief of mission at the Israeli Embassy in Washington.

Many of the photographers were American Christians who benefited from two 19th-century inventions — the steam-powered ship and photography — enabling their trips and their documentation of life in the Holy Land.

Read the rest of this entry »

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Reclaiming Humanity

December 27, 2017

Review by Rabbi Dov Peretz Elkins • Jewish Media Review

Reclaiming Humanity web1

 

The inner world of a healthy child is filled with wonder, awe, and faith in a fair and just world. But for some children, a belief in the benevolence of the world and its people is often too hard to claim. In this unique guidebook, Dr. Norman Fried gives valuable insights into the lives of children who have been victimized by chaos or disease, and teaches how to help them grow within the context of a loving, accepting, and ethical bond. Using these examples, along with insightful writings of psychology, faith, and the wisdom of trauma specialists, Dr. Fried shows how divine connections can serve as an inspiration, as well as a template, for other healthy interactions in a world that needs repair. Through directed action, biblical citations, and psychotherapeutic techniques that provide empowerment and hope, Dr. Fried takes the reader on a journey toward healthier functioning.

Norman J. Fried, PhD, is a clinical psychologist and a disaster mental health specialist for the American Red Cross of Greater New York. he is a former director of psychosocial services at the Cancer Center for Kids and the division of pediatric hematology/oncology at Winthrop University on Long Island. He has also taught in the medical schools of New York University and St. John’s University, and has been a fellow in clinical and pediatric psychology at Harvard Medical Schoo. He is the author of The Angel Letters: Lessons that Dying Can Teach Us about Living and Every Day I Bless You: Reflections on the Healing Power of Shiva. He lives in Roslyn, New York.


American Interests in the Holy Land

December 20, 2017

Yankees in Zion

A series of essays examines a century of curious photos of the Holy Land, revealing a complex weave of relationships among Americans, Arabs, and Jews.

Written by Elka Weber, Segula Magazine

american interests

Americans have long been fascinated with Israel (if not always enamored of it). In the 19th century, many American Protestants saw the return of the Jews to the Holy Land as a prerequisite of the Second Coming. At the same time, Jewish immigration to the land increased, buoyed by the nationalist fervor sweeping Europe and by anti-Semitism around the world.
This mass immigration coincided with Read the rest of this entry »


Am I My Body’s Keeper?Torah, Science, Diet, and Fitness – for Life

December 3, 2017

Reviewed by By Rosally Saltsman in The Jewish Press

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Am I My Body’s Keeper is octogenarian Michael Kaufman’s ninth book. Kaufman writes prolifically on Jewish thought and this book is no different because keeping fit and healthy is a Jewish precept.

Venishmartem Meod Lenafshoteichem (Devarim 4:15).

Am I My Body’s Keeper? The answer is Read the rest of this entry »


BOOK REVIEW: JEWISH GUIDE TO PRACTICAL MEDICAL DECISION-MAKING

November 20, 2017

Reviewed by Devorah Talia Gordon • 

Medical Decisions web 1

When asked to review Rabbi Jason Weiner’s book, Jewish Guide to Practical Decision-Making, I hesitated. Surely my editor had asked the wrong writer. Having almost no medical or halachic knowledge, I imagined the read would be akin to Read the rest of this entry »


Rabbi Dr. Yitz Greenberg with a copy of ‘A Torah Giant’

October 25, 2017

yitz holding our book

Rabbi Dr. Irving (Yitz) Greenberg holding a copy of

A Torah Giant edited by Rabbi Dr. Shmuly Yanklowitz

 

torah giant web 1Discover the breadth of wisdom provided by this generation’s giant of Torah: Rabbi Irving “Yitz” Greenberg. Rabbi Yitz is one of the most renowned leaders in contemporary Jewish communal life. His dedication to foster a more interconnected and vibrant Judaism has been felt across the academic and broader world. In this new work, the legacy of Rabbi Yitz is discussed at length by those who have been affected by his inclusive model of contemporary Judaism, approachable erudition, commitment to fostering meaningful interfaith dialogue, and constant striving to make the world a more just place. These intellectual progenies divulge the lasting impact Rabbi Yitz has had on their lives and the lives of people around the globe.

 

Edited by Rabbi Dr. Shmuly Yanklowitz
Foreword by Rabbi Avi Weiss
Introduction by Rabbi Joseph Telushkin
Hardcover, 344 pages
KTAV Publishing House and Urim Publications 2018
ISBN 978-965-524-271-3

Genesis: ‘From The Heart of a Lion’

October 17, 2017

 

Written by Alan Jay Gerber.

Originally appeared in The Jewish Star on October 8, 2017. 

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One of the most charismatic young rabbis in education today is Rabbi Aryeh Cohen, the Mashgiach Ruchani at the DRS High School in Woodmere. Rabbi Cohen has assembled in book form (“From The Heart of a Lion,” Penina Press) a series of eloquent and timely essays themed to each parasha in Bereshis. The content of each chapter fully lives up to the rabbi’s reputation of combining his analytic learning style with anecdotes relating to life’s experiences.

In Noach, next week’s parasha, Rabbi Cohen relates a personal relationship to demonstrate respect for authority especially in terms of religious reverence and mentorship.

The rabbinical authority in this essay was HaRav Nosson Finkel, zt”l, rosh yeshiva of the Mir Yeshiva in Jerusalem, who was, in Rabbi Cohen’s words, the “foundation of my life as a Jew.”

The relationship that Rabbi Cohen describes illustrates the author’s style and the greatness of his subject.

“From the time I began to Read the rest of this entry »