From Mourning to Morning

December 13, 2017

From Mourning to Morning

“If only common sense was wise enough to comfort mourners and to cope with the tragedy of death. As a Rabbi and highly respected hospital chaplain, Simeon Schreiber has written an invaluable modern day guide to the perplexed, all those well-meaning friends and relatives who come to bring a measure of consolation to those suffering the loss of a loved one and – because of their lack of knowledge of fundamental psychological insights as well as profound Jewish ideas hallowed by tradition – undo all the good that might be accomplished with a shiva call. I wish everyone who is about to fulfill the great mitzvah of visiting those who grieve their beloved departed reads and then rereads the valuable guidance offered by a masterful practitioner of the art of helping people move from mourning to morning.”

Rabbi Benjamin Blech, Professor of Talmud, Yeshiva University

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‘Between War and Peace’ Is Not Your Average Rabbinical Biography

December 4, 2017

Review by Prof. Sam Lehman-Wilzig, Jewish Link of New Jersey

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The hero of this book—Rabbi She’ar Yashuv Cohen, z”l, (1927-2016)—was probably the most influential and greatest Israeli rabbi that you might never have heard of (if you don’t live in Israel). His biography, translated from the original Hebrew edition with an added chapter, makes for fascinating (and at times even amazing) reading. That’s not only because of 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 »


Rabbi Haim David Halevy: Gentle Scholar and Courageous Thinker

November 30, 2017

Reviewed by Ben Rothke in The Jewish Press

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For many Americans, when thinking of chief Sephardic rabbis, their list may consist only of one whom they know: Rav Ovadia Yosef, zt”l. As chief Sephardic rabbi of Tel Aviv, R’ Haim David Halevy, zt”l, is not as well-known as R’ Ovadia Yosef, but was certainly in his league.

In Rabbi Haim David Halevy: Gentle Scholar and Courageous Thinker, Rabbis Marc Angel and Hayyim Angel have written a masterful biography of this fascinating sage. Halevy was a man of myriad talents. Be it a noted author, significant talmid chacham, master Read the rest of this entry »


Gender Equality and Prayer in Jewish Law

November 27, 2017

Benedict Roth, Jewish Chronicle UK

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Orthodox women could enjoy greater equality if rabbis were ready to pursue it

A new book takes a fresh look at rabbinic sources on women’s prayer

The expressions “gender equality” and “Jewish law” rarely appear in the same sentence and many would expect a book on the subject to be a short one. Gender equality is the language of today’s equal rights movement, while Jewish law contains features that are conspicuously unequal: a woman’s testimony is invalid in a Jewish court and she is categorised with slaves and children for many halachic purposes.

But the true picture is Read the rest of this entry »


Rabbi Shear Yashuv Cohen: Between War and Peace

November 26, 2017

Daniel D. Stuhlman, AJL Reviews

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“Rabbi Eliyahu Yosef Shear Yashuv Cohen (1927-2016) had his feet in more than one world. He fought in the battle for Jerusalem in the 1948-49 war and was taken prisoner to Jordan when the Old City fell, hence the subtitle “Between War and Peace.” One chapter is his diary from the battle and his captivity. After the war, he was appointed chief chaplain of the Air Force. His brother-in-law Rabbi Shlomo Goren was the chief chaplain of the army. In 1953, he married Naomi Goldstein the daughter of Rabbi Herbert Goldstein of New York and grand-daughter of Harry Fischel.

As chief rabbi of the Israel Air Force and of the city of Haifa he had frequent meetings with Jews of many levels of observance and with Arabs and Christians. He even went to Rome to meet the Pope and address the synod of the Catholic Church. He was respected by religious leaders, heads of state, public figures and his own community in Haifa and Jerusalem.

This is an interesting book that introduces Rabbi Shear Yashuv Cohen to a new audience even though he died less than 2 years ago. The book is highly recommended for academic, synagogue, school, and personal collections.

Frisch, Yechiel & Yedidya HaCohen. Rabbi Shear Yashuv Cohen: Between War and Peace. Translated by Irene Lancaster. Jerusalem; New York: Urim Publications, 2017. 334 pp. (9789655243539).


BOOK REVIEW: JEWISH GUIDE TO PRACTICAL MEDICAL DECISION-MAKING

November 20, 2017

Reviewed by Devorah Talia Gordon • 

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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 »