These and Those

Musings from Students of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem

Archive: January 2016

Turkey 2016: Hail to the Chief

Posted on January 19, 2016 by Binyamin Cohen

The Hahambashi, Chief Rabbi of Turkey, Rabbi Yitzchak Haleva, is quite a character. He’s not a big man, but his jutting beard, bright eyes, and fireball personality make him unforgettable. We had the honor of meeting with him on Friday, and were honored by his presence throughout shabbat. We stepped into his office on Friday, Continue Reading »

Turkey 2016: Learning from History

Posted on January 14, 2016 by Binyamin Cohen

We got off our minibus at the top of the ridge, sparse trees all around us. We began to follow the road up to the peak, and as we do we begin to see signs of the reason we’re here: trenches, tunnels, foxholes. Gallipoli became much more real at the top of the hill: from Continue Reading »

Parshat Vayigash

Posted on December 18, 2015 by Binyamin Cohen

I don’t deserve this. We don’t deserve this. I’ve changed, we all have. We don’t deserve this, Yehuda thinks to himself, as he approaches the strange man on the strange throne before him. Strange, yet oddly familiar. This man on the seat of power, robed like an Egyptian vizier, but with eyes that make Yehuda Continue Reading »

Parshat Noach: Building and Community

Posted on October 16, 2015 by Binyamin Cohen

This week’s parsha, Parshat Noach, is a parsha about building. It is flanked by the stories of the Flood and the Tower of Babel, two stories in which something substantial is built by human hands. However, the similarities end there. In one story, there is a boat that is built by a single man. It Continue Reading »

[PCJE] VaYerah: Being Human

Posted on November 8, 2014 by Binyamin Cohen

Night Seder Chevrutas Binyamin Cohen and David Wallach join together to reflect on this week’s parshah. בְּרֵאשִׁית  י”ח:י”ז וַיהוָה, אָמָר: הַמְכַסֶּה אֲנִי מֵאַבְרָהָם, אֲשֶׁר אֲנִי עֹשֶׂה ‘God said, “Shall I hide from Abraham what I am going to do?”’ (Gen. 18:17) This week’s parshah is packed with stories of the lives of Abraham and Sarah. Continue Reading »

[PCJE] Lech-Lecha: Hearing the Call

Posted on November 3, 2014 by Binyamin Cohen

Night Seder Chevrutas Binyamin Cohen and David Wallach join together to reflect on this week’s parshah. בְּרֵאשִׁית י”ב:א “וַיֹּאמֶר יְהוָה אֶל-אַבְרָם, לֶךְ-לְךָ מֵאַרְצְךָ וּמִמּוֹלַדְתְּךָ וּמִבֵּית אָבִיךָ, אֶל-הָאָרֶץ, אֲשֶׁר אַרְאֶךָּ” ‘God said to Abram, “Go away from your land, from your birthplace, and from your father’s house, to the land that I will show you.”’ (Gen. Continue Reading »

[PCJE] Bereshit: The Nature of Creation

Posted on October 20, 2014 by Binyamin Cohen

Night Seder Chevrutas Binyamin Cohen and David Wallach join together to reflect on this week’s parshah. בְּרֵאשִׁית ב:ט וַיַּצְמַח יְהוָה אֱלֹהִים, מִן-הָאֲדָמָה, כָּל-עֵץ נֶחְמָד לְמַרְאֶה, וְטוֹב לְמַאֲכָל וְעֵץ הַחַיִּים, בְּתוֹךְ הַגָּן, וְעֵץ, הַדַּעַת טוֹב וָרָע “The Lord God made grow out of the ground every tree that is pleasant to look at and good to Continue Reading »

[PCJE] Vezot HaBeracha: His Last Bow

Posted on October 15, 2014 by Binyamin Cohen

Night Seder Chevrutas Binyamin Cohen and David Wallach join together to reflect on this week’s parshah. א  וְזֹאת הַבְּרָכָה, אֲשֶׁר בֵּרַךְ מֹשֶׁה אִישׁ הָאֱלֹהִים–אֶת-בְּנֵי יִשְׂרָאֵל:  לִפְנֵי, מוֹתוֹ ב  וַיֹּאמַר, יְהוָה מִסִּינַי בָּא וְזָרַח מִשֵּׂעִיר לָמוֹ–הוֹפִיעַ מֵהַר פָּארָן, וְאָתָה מֵרִבְבֹת קֹדֶשׁ; מִימִינוֹ, אשדת (אֵשׁ דָּת) לָמוֹ “This is the blessing that Moses, the man of God, Continue Reading »

[PCJE] Kohelet: Let it Go

Posted on October 14, 2014 by Binyamin Cohen

Night Seder Chevrutas Binyamin Cohen and David Wallach join together to reflect on this week’s parshah. Kohelet, the book of Ecclesiastes, which we read on Shabbat Chol HaMoed Sukkot, is a depressing and troubling book. It is written by “Kohelet the son of David, king in Jerusalem” (Ecc. 1:1). Who was this king, and why Continue Reading »

Yom Kippur and Shabbat: Conflict and Compromise

Posted on October 2, 2014 by Binyamin Cohen

This year Yom Kippur falls on Shabbat: the two holiest days in the Jewish calendar at the same time. However, the ethos of Yom Kippur and the ethos of Shabbat are contradictory. How do we negotiate these differences, and how do we find compromise between them? Before we answer those questions, we must first address Continue Reading »

Page 1 of 212