Tag Archives: Shabbat & holidays

A Yom Kippur Primer (Liturgical Highlights)

A dear friend and close colleague of some twenty years in the Department of Religion, not Jewish, asked about Yom Kippur. Just what is Yom Kippur and what exactly does one do all day, assuming of course that one is … Continue reading

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Caffeine Suppositories (Yom Kippur)

After excruciating headaches this Yom Kippur, I appreciate that this definitely seems to be a thing. From the Forward, you  can read the article here about the use of caffeine suppositories to ease the horrible effects of withdrawal on the … Continue reading

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U’netaneh Tokef is a Wolfish Prayer

I used to think I understood the U’netaneh Tokef, the famous High Holiday piyyut, or liturgical poem. It’s expression centered on the sublime eternity of God, the fleeting and uncertain condition of human life (how many will live and how … Continue reading

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Hegel Happy Purim Unhappy Consciousness

Here, then, we have a struggle against an enemy, to vanquish whom is really to suffer defeat, where victory in one consciousness is really lost in its opposite. Consciousness of life, of its existence and activity, is only an agonizing … Continue reading

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Hanukah & Hasmoneans

This time of year, there’s a lot of snark about the Hanuka taking up an ideological cudgel against the fanatic Maccabees. Some of the discussion relies on the ambivalence tending towards hostility expressed in the Bavli towards this minor festival … Continue reading

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Easy Fast & Yom Kippur Year of Vigilance (2017)

I don’t think I was the only one in my social circles on whom the Days of  Awe fell flat this year. There was AB, and AB, and SB, and I’m sure many more who said pretty much the same … Continue reading

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Not So Awesome Days of Awe This Year

Rituals, we know from the study of religion, are supposed to encapsulate a perfect order completely unlike the messiness of lived, daily life. In the ritual space, everything is supposed to go right. This is what marks the disjunctive quality, … Continue reading

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