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And they walked together…

The Akeida (Binding of Isaac) is one of the most challenging stories of the Bible. It is a central Torah reading on Rosh Hashanah, it poses complex philosophical and theological questions, has been a dramatic artistic visual, and above all … Read the rest

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5 Basketball Lessons

At the Maimonides School I work with the students in preparing a weekly newsletter titled “MC – Maimonides Community”. A new feature this year is “High-5” each week students choose 5 key points about a certain subject.

This week was … Read the rest

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A Chassidic Drinking Song

Disclaimer: For Chassidim this song wasn’t about drinking, it’s a metaphor for the thirst Chassidim have for the Rebbe’s teaching and invigorating inspiration.

(It’s especially appropriate this week, as Columbus Day Weekend falls on Parshat Lech-Lecha, which tells of G-d … Read the rest

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Deb Tambor, Shulem Deen, and Us…

The tragic and untimely death of Deb Tambor this week brought to the fore a painful and troubling issue, well-articulated in a  Tablet magazine article written by Shulem Deen, another ex-Skver Chassid who like Deb Tambor was estranged from … Read the rest

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“Rabbi, in this attire!?”

We had a team of girls from APO take down the Schach and a later a team of guys from AEPI come over and help us take out the boards and put away the Sukkah. The guys were there late, … Read the rest

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Tribute to Simchas Torah Dancers

This year Simchat Torah may have been smaller crowd-wise, but was one of our liveliest and most dynamic ever! Thursday night Hakafot dancing started 8:30pm and the 7th Hakfah (dance circuit) was still going strong at midnight.

Often Simchat Torah … Read the rest

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“Dance because you are Jewish!”

In the early 199o’s Shlomo Carlebach (the well-known inspirational teacher, composer, folk-singer of hundreds of popular Jewish melodies) played his last concert in Albany. It was at the Albany Girls Academy auditorium on Academy Road and I remember it well. … Read the rest

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The “Hoshiyah” Song

One of the songs sung most often on Simchat Torah  is “Hoshiya es Amecha” – its an easy natural, comes right off the Aneinu intros, and is usually sung a couple of times before new Hakafah songs are sung.

There’s … Read the rest

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Why emphasize Lulav over Etrog?

It so happens that today, on Shabbos, the last of a long 3-day YomTov with many meals served, we’re down to 9 green tablecloths, and one yellow. This set-up makes you think of the Lulav and Etrog. (Truth is we … Read the rest

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Changing Lightbulbs

Bedtime is an important ritual in this house, especially for the younger kids, on nights that we don’t have events going on. Reading books, Or “stories from my mind” is a big part of it. We go to the Library … Read the rest

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