Pro­duc­ing con­tent on the Web since 1995.


some say­ings of ר‘משבצונה“ל

For many years I have worked hard, and strug­gled with mas­ter­ing virtuous. Now, in addi­tion, I’m work­ing on becom­ing more virtual.
This is an expres­sion of that effort.
* * * * * * *

השיבנו ה‘ אליך ונשובה חדש ימינו
כעוד לא היו
* * * * * * *
ומביא גאלה…
לצאצאיהם

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All pho­tographs are by Mark Hurvitz unless they are obvi­ously not (or credit oth­er­wise is given).

The pho­tos in the ban­ner at the top (only a shal­low sliver of a much larger photo) are either from our home or our trav­els and are offered for their beauty alone (though a brain-teaser for me: “Where was that?”).

#blogelul - bless

the priestly blessing "salute"

may the … be with you

Per­haps the most famous bless­ing is that expressed by the ancient priests in Jerusalem as recorded in the book of Num­bers (6:24–26):

יְבָרֶכְךָ יְיָ וְיִשְׁמְרֶךָ. יָאֵר יְיָ פָּנָיו אֵלֶיךָ וִיחֻנֶּךָ. יִשָּׂא יְיָ פָּנָיו אֵלֶיךָ וְיָשֵׂם לְךָ שָׁלוֹם.

The priests of old are no longer in a posi­tion to do the bless­ing as they […]

#blogexodus : spring (karpas)

כרפס | karpas | eat the green vegetables

Dip sprigs of pars­ley in salt water and dis­trib­ute them to all present at the Seder table while read­ing the fol­low­ing para­graphs and singing the following songs.

My heart over­flows with joy! I finally see more day­light than dark­ness and a full moon glows tonight. Cel­e­brate with me the flow­er­ing of the […]

how do I cleanse my life of chametz?

rabbi meir shmuel ben tzip­po­rah v’nechemia halevi [ר‘משבצונה“ל] teaches:

Judith came in from the fields where it appeared as though the whole com­mu­nity was out har­vest­ing the new grain crop. The rains had ceased and the ground had dried enough to enable them to walk through the plants and col­lect the ripened sheaves. The stone house […]

the new year; traveling for chocolate… and much more

Switzer­land was actu­ally “Plan B”

We had hoped to get to Fire Island (Long Island) at The Pines for Rosh haShan­nah to be with a col­league and at the beach. How­ever, because “the sea­son” at The Pines was still going strong, the two estab­lish­ments where we tried to book rooms could not com­mit, barely even return­ing our calls […]

The People of the…

We have been called a Peo­ple of the Book for nearly 1400 years. We did not invent the term. It was given to us (as well as to Chris­tians) by our cousins the Mus­lims. Nonethe­less, even as our tech­nolo­gies move us beyond the phys­i­cal book, the text remains. We return to the text that has served […]

what do you put in your coffee?

[cross posted at The Jew and the Carrot]

Phar­isees of course

A Tiny Vial of Pharisäer

Ever-sensitive to appear­ances of Jew­ish ref­er­ences in pop­u­lar cul­ture, I was a bit sur­prised to read Mau­reen Dowd’s head­line in The New York Times on Sun­day, July 19, 2009: “Phar­isees on the Potomac”

I did not see any men­tion of late antiq­uity in her […]

Hidden in plain sight

At the far east end of 47th Street in Man­hat­tan, between 2nd and 1st Avenues a broad lovely park leads up to the United Nations com­plex of build­ings on the East River. A farmer’s mar­ket is set up every Wednes­day through­out the year.

a mar­ket and plaza to rally against genocide

This broad space is known as Katharine Hep­burn Garden […]

hidden in plain sight (continued)

con­tin­ued from hid­den in plain sight

what are we hiding (from)?

As of this writ­ing, the phrase “hid­den in plain sight” appears in a Google search 142,000 times. It must refer to a wide vari­ety of con­cepts and sit­u­a­tions. How many things to we encounter and pass by that are as though they are hid­den from us in plain sight? I asked […]

Neapolitan

Over the years I have been asked:

What kind of a rabbi are you?

To which I answer with­out hesitation:

A good rabbi!

And then my inter­locu­tor stam­mers a bit and says:

No, no, what… oh, ah…. Are you…?

At which point I gen­tly inter­rupt and say:

Neapoli­tan

Which is the fast…?

[cross posted at the Jew and the Car­rot and at the Reli­gious Action Cen­ter of Reform Judaism].

The prophet Isa­iah asks (58:6–7):

Is not this the fast that I have cho­sen? to loose the fet­ters of wicked­ness, to undo the bands of the yoke, and to let the oppressed go free, and that ye break every yoke? Is […]