As we approach the upcoming High Holy Day season, we wish our members and supporters all the best, good health and happiness. This is a good time for us to invest in those institutions and causes that strengthen Jewish life, so that we may build a better and stronger future for our community. Each gift to the Institute for Jewish Ideas and Ideals is a vote for an intellectually vibrant, compassionate, inclusive Orthodox Judaism.
The Book of Jonah is a larger-than-life story of every individual who seeks closeness with God. There is a paradoxical recognition that the closer one comes to God, the more one becomes conscious of the chasm separating God’s wisdom from our own.
On August 29-30, Yeshivat Chovevei Torah will be holding its 19th annual Study Days in Bible and Jewish Thought over Zoom. Our National Scholar, Rabbi Hayyim Angel, will present a class on Sunday evening August 29, from 8:00-9:00pm. The event is co-sponsored by The Institute for Jewish Ideas and Ideals.
For registration and the full schedule, please see this link:
S. Y. Agnon, born in August 1887, was an Israeli author who won the Nobel Prize for Literature in 1966. His writings are infused with deep love of the Bible, Talmud, Israel...the Jewish People and the Jewish historical experience. In this short essay, Rabbi Marc Angel explores some of Agnon's major themes.
The Bible has a singular vision for Jews and humanity. Beginning with the unprecedented declaration in the first chapter of Genesis that all people are created in God’s Image (Genesis 1:26–27), the Torah and prophets present a program for Israel and humanity that can bring about a redeemed, harmonious, religious-ethical world.
It is through the sense of Jewish identity, forged by an observant lifestyle, that one is more likely to feel that distinct sense of peoplehood and that non-severable bond to the destiny of the Jewish people and to the state of Israel. It is only then that one can find the courage to speak the words that must be spoken, the truth about our people's proud history and Israel's proud struggle to survive.
With the growing success and utilization of Assisted Reproductive Technologies, it is not at all surprising that halakhic discussions abound concerning their appropriateness, how and when they should be carried out and under what circumstances couples should avail themselves of ART.
This essay examines the halakhic import of praying in the synagogue. As many synagogues are now able to return to the normal activity and hustle and bustle of our synagogue life, it is important to re-confirm the significance of synagogues for our religious lives.
It is no coincidence that this Mitzvah of Bikkurim is read in the Torah two weeks before Rosh HaShanah, the special time of renewal. Every year, we are faced with the challenge of finding a new way to bring in the year.
Dr. Elliot Turiel writes of his experiences as a child in the Island of Rhodes during World War II. When the Jews of Rhodes were deported to Auschwitz in July 1944, the Turiel family was saved by the Turkish Consul in Rhodes, since Elliot's mother held a Turkish passport.