Category Archives: Community Blog

Community Blog Hebrew College Tablet Logo

A New Relationship With My Jewish Self

I was shocked at the degree to which the structure of Eser helped me to re-imagine a Jewish identity that had not been updated in decades. I abandoned Jewish education in high school, the moment my parents stopped insisting that I go. Each Jewish life cycle event, from consecration to b’nai mitzvah to confirmation, had required me to affirm beliefs and commit to practices that I didn’t know if I… Read Article →

Community Blog michael-shire

What studying text can teach us about our place in the world

Learning Jewish texts has long been the practice of Jewish education, though I personally was not exposed to a rabbinic text in its original language and printed setting until late in adolescence. I remember it being a thrill to see a passage in an edition of the Talmud and slowly make my way through the Mishnah and some commentary on the side of the page. It felt truly authentic and… Read Article →

Community Blog Hebrew College Tablet Logo

“May the divine compassion that is within each and every one of us be awakened now”

Dear friends, In the aftermath of Saturday’s horrifying and murderous attack in Pittsburgh, our hearts go out to the members of the Tree of Life synagogue, to the injured and their families, to those whose loved ones were killed, to the entire Jewish community of Pittsburgh, and to all those tied to them through countless invisible threads of connection. On Saturday, in Jewish communities around the world, we listened to… Read Article →

Community Blog Rabbi-Sharon-Cohen-Anisfeld

Open your eyes and look for each other.

As I write this week, my heart is trembling with love, fear, and a fierce sense of protectiveness for the transgender people in my life – friends, teachers, colleagues, students, children of friends. I tremble for them because of the latest attempt to erase their experience by taking away the language that might help us begin to see them and understand their lives. I tremble for all of us, because… Read Article →

Community Blog Hebrew College Tablet Logo

Introducing All Genders Wrap

Rabbinical School student Rachel Putterman’s desire to empower Jews of all genders with the knowledge of how to put on tefillin, a sacred practice that has traditionally been solely within the purview of cis-gender men. “As a relatively late-in-life rabbinical school student, I really wanted to learn how to put on tefillin… When I asked a friend my age how she learned, she said by watching YouTube videos. When I went on… Read Article →

Community Blog Rabbi Arthur Green

Hebrew College Presidential Installation Address: Rabbi Arthur Green

.בעוד שלוש שנים, תחוג המכללה העברית מאה שנה להיווסדה Three years from now, Hebrew College will celebrate the hundredth anniversary of its founding. Throughout this near-century, this institution and the community of faculty, students, alumni, and supporters who constitute it have been committed to the goal of building and strengthening the Jewish future. We do so through education, teaching the great literary and spiritual treasures of the Jewish tradition, whenever… Read Article →

Community Blog Rabbi-Sharon-Cohen-Anisfeld

Hebrew College Presidential Installation: Words of Reflection and Hope

Honored guests, beloved family, friends, teachers, students, colleagues, alumni, members of the Shabbat Table and President’s Council and the Hebrew College Board of Trustees. Thank you. To everyone who worked so generously to create this special evening — Guided by our installation chairs, Rabbi Suzanne Offit and Rabbi Sonia Saltzman, With extraordinary vision, grace, and loving attention — Im kol halev, todah. With all my heart, thank you. Andy, and… Read Article →

Community Blog Hebrew College Tablet Logo

Can There Be Joy Amidst Vulnerability?

The Torah makes it very clear that we are to be joyful on Sukkot. We read in Deuteronomy, “V’samachta b’chagecha … You shall rejoice in your festival … v’haita ach sameach … and you shall have nothing but joy.”[1] Given that Sukkot goes by another name, z’man simchateinu, “the time of our rejoicing,” it is no surprise that these verses have become the major theme song of our festival. And… Read Article →

Community Blog Hebrew College Tablet Logo

Why I talk to dead guys about my uterus

I spend a lot of my time talking to old dead guys about my uterus. It’s not a popular thing for a young person to do – especially when it comes to controversial, timely social issues like immigration, LGBTQ rights, and reproductive justice. The people most natural for me to consult should be my peers – leaders in these fields, champions of progress, and fighters for justice in the here… Read Article →

Community Blog Rabbi-Sharon-Cohen-Anisfeld

The Call of the Shofar

Amidst all the noise of the world in which we live, we prepare ourselves to hear the call of the shofar, the call of the ram’s horn, on Rosh Hashanah morning. I want to return for a moment to the ram’s appearance in the Torah reading for the second day of Rosh Hashanah. Vayisa Avraham et eynav vayar v’hinei ayil achar ne’echaz bas’vach b’karnav. “Abraham looked up, and his eye fell… Read Article →