Seventy Faces of Torah jordan-schuster

Vertical Ladders of Sky, Horizontal Ladders of Earth

Parashat Va-Yetze (Genesis 28:10-32:3) I’ve been thinking about John Keats lately. About how he died at the age of 25. About how so much of his life up to that point was spent contemplating a way out of this world. Beauty, imagination, sleep – these were his exits and escapes. These were the paths he used to transcend reality, to free himself from the cruelty, the violence, the brokenness of this… Read Article →

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 →

Seventy Faces of Torah Rabbi Adam Lavitt

Closed Wells, Closed Hearts

Parashat Toldot (Genesis 25:19-28:9) A man in an elevator repeatedly presses the close button as a woman outside shares her story of sexual assault. T’ruah recently convened a group of rabbis and cantors in conversation with Ana Maria Archila, one of the women who confronted Senator Jeff Flake in that powerful moment. During our conversation, someone spoke about Dr. Ford’s courage, and the cautious optimism they felt leading up to… Read Article →

Seventy Faces of Torah Rabbi Becky SIlverstein

Lifting our eyes to find each other

Parashat Chayei Sarah (Genesis 23:1-25:18) Mah anachnu, meh chayeinu, meh chasdeinu, mah tzidkateinu, mah yeshuateinu, mah cohenu, mah gevuroteinu… the rhythm of the Hebrew words picks up speed as I move through the morning blessings. What are we?  What is our life? What is our loving-kindness?  What is our righteousness? What is our salvation?  What is our strength? What is our might? The parallelism in the English underscores the urgency of the questions…. 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 →

Seventy Faces of Torah michael-shire

The Call to Protest

Parashat Vayera (Genesis 18:1-22:24) The call to protest grows larger each day. From the women’s march in Washington in January 2016 to the climate change rallies around the world, to the #MeToo movement and anti-sexual harassment demonstrations, to vigils protesting the separation of children from their parents in immigration detention. From concern at the rise in antisemitism worldwide, to outrage of the treatment of journalists uncovering truth in the face… 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 →