WAS YOSEF ON THE SPECTRUM? Understanding Joseph through Torah, Midrash and Classical Jewish Sources by Samuel J. Levine (Urim 2019). In general, I am not drawn to Torah commentaries that seek to frame biblical personalities in the language of today, at the cost of understanding their words and actions as expressed by the language of … More WAS YOSEF ON THE SPECTRUM?
SEARCH ENGINE – FINDING MEANING IN JEWISH TEXTS, VOLUME 1: JEWISH LIFE By Rabbi Gil Student (Kodesh Press, 2018) INTRODUCTION Imagine you asked me for a book recommendation – specifically, a book that discussed Jewish law, but somehow not just Jewish law. A book that addressed technological developments and social trends through the halachic lens, … More SEARCH ENGINE – FINDING MEANING IN JEWISH TEXTS, VOLUME 1: JEWISH LIFE
JEWISH LAW AS A JOURNEY: FINDING MEANING IN DAILY JEWISH PRACTICE by Rabbi David Silverstein, Menorah Books (2017) Over the past three years I have reviewed over 100 Jewish books and I can say with absolute honesty that I have drawn wisdom and understanding from them all. However, I must admit that I do not … More JEWISH LAW AS A JOURNEY: FINDING MEANING IN DAILY JEWISH PRACTICE
BEGINNINGS: THE KABBALISTIC HISTORY OF CIVILIZATION by Rabbi Yaacov Haber (Mosaica Press, 2018) Many years ago I read a fascinating article written by Alfred Jospe in 1965 exploring why Jews in general, and specifically college aged Jews, seem to disconnect from their heritage. As he explains, it is at that age that the sophistication of … More BEGINNINGS: THE KABBALISTIC HISTORY OF CIVILIZATION by Rabbi Yaacov Haber
By Yaacov David Shulman CreateSpace Independent Publishing Platform, 2017 126 pages (nb. This review was featured in Jewish Action Fall 2018 and can be read here). Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook (1865-1935), best known as the first chief rabbi of pre-state Israel, was a truly unique Talmudist, halachist, mystic, poet and Jewish thinker. As chief rabbi, … More Airport Lights
JEWISH GUIDE TO PRACTICAL MEDICAL DECISION-MAKING by Rabbi Jason Weiner (Urim, 2017) It takes considerable skill to write a book about modern medicine, and even greater skill to explain how halakha (Jewish law) responds to the dilemmas generated by modern medicine. Still, even those with the requisite knowledge of medicine and Jewish law may struggle to … More JEWISH GUIDE TO PRACTICAL MEDICAL DECISION-MAKING
I. Introduction Over many years I have developed a great passion towards the study of contemporary halakhah – and specifically – towards contemporary She’elot U’Teshuvot (responsa literature). This is due to the fact that while codified halakhah is often recorded by the author ‘after examining the halakhic materials from a theoretical point of view’, responsa … More SEFER NISHMAT HABAYIT