Author: Avi Shafran

A Most Meaningful Mineral

The word “sacrifices” used for korbanos, the mainstay topic of parshas Vayikra, is a misnomer. Korban doesn’t carry the meaning of “giving up something.” Its most accurate, if awkward, translation would be “bringer of...

“Bloc”-Headedness

An article I wrote for Forward about how chareidi Jews are vilified by some for simply exercising their democratic right to vote appears here.

Parshas Vayakhel – Not All Donations Welcome

Sometimes money amassed through questionable means is donated to good causes like charities or educational institutions. Perhaps the donors’ subconscious, or even conscious, intent is to somehow render their ill-gotten gains “kosher” in some...

NBC-Think about the Equality Act

A column  I wrote for NBC-Think about the Equality Act, a piece of legislation that could have dire consequences for religious institutions, can be read here.  

Of Idols and Ideals – parshas Ki Sisa

Describing our ancestors’ worshipping of the egel hazahav, the golden calf, the Torah relates that “Early next day, the people offered up olos [burnt offerings] and shelamim [peace sacrifices], they sat down to eat...

Parshas Tetzaveh – Redolence and Relationship

After the Torah prescribes the details of the various vessels attendant to the mishkan (tabernacle), of the construction of the mishkan itself, of the mizbeach (altar), of the daily lighting of the menorah, of the...

Defining Debauchery Down

One would have been forgiven for assuming it an elaborate Purim joke.  In fact, assuming otherwise would have strained credulity. But credible, unfortunately, it is. “It” — a new glossy magazine I prefer not...

Lazer in Space

It takes an impressive degree of repugnancy for a Republican lawmaker to evoke condemnation from Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell. Enter newly elected Representative Marjorie Taylor Greene of Georgia. She earned that dishonor by...

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