Author: Avi Shafran


A Worthy Thought

Two South Carolina Republican Party chairmen were roundly denounced recently for invoking “stereotypes about Jews,” as the Anti-Defamation League declared, that will “reinforce anti-Semitism.” What Edwin Merwin and James Ulmer did was write an...


The Daily Jews

there is still a mass of Jews who daily and diligently heed the Talmud’s admonition to act in a way that “causes the name of G-d to be loved because of you[r actions]” (Yoma 86a)


The People Problem

The life work of Norman Borlaug, who died shortly before Rosh Hashana at the age of 95, should give deep pause to those who see humans as a threat to the planet. Those, that...


Thirteen Times Two Equals One

Oddly, a Hebrew phrase familiar to the Jewishly-educated is routinely used to refer to two entirely different and seemingly unrelated things. The phrase is “Yud Gimmel Middot” – literally, “13 Measures” – and one...


Wings and Prayers

There is a world of difference between Tevya’s celebration of “Tradition!” for tradition’s sake and the deep meanings that lie in the rites and rituals of Jewish religious life.


Selichos, 1939

The smell of smoke grew even stronger as did the cries of the hundreds of Jews packed in the synagogue awaiting a terrible death. And then, a miracle occurred.


Justice Sotomayor and the Jews

Reports have it that a popular inscription of late on coffee mugs and t-shirts is “wise Latina woman.” The reference, of course, is to U.S. Supreme Court Justice Sonia Sotomayor’s contention in a 2001...

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