For a hundred generations Jews lived in anticipation of redemption, a historical tension that continues to define Judaism
Why read the Talmud as a secular Jew? In part, for its expression of an independent Jewish creativity and spirituality.
The Talmud describes rabbis who were not just judges and legal analysts, but magicians as well
In staking claims about the validity of Jewish identity, the rabbis show that the Diaspora has existed for nearly as long as Judaism
Pi, irrational numbers, and squaring the circle are all brought to bear to find justifications for tradition
In her latest novel, Alice Hoffman renders the brutal world of Lower East Side immigrants in the romantic hues her readers expect
In dissenting opinions, Talmudic rabbis propose and debate every detail of Sukkot’s booth and, in so doing, measure God
A holy desecration is unethical in part because of the social pressure to reflect well on the tribe
In Joshua Max Feldman’s entertaining debut novel ‘The Book of Jonah,’ Greed is Good meets Sept. 11
Manna, and fasting, are not just miracles of sustenance and faith, but also elements of jurisprudence
Illogical Jewish laws are ‘matters that Satan challenges’: raising doubts for enemies of Judaism and skeptical Jews
Scott Stossel’s ‘My Age of Anxiety’ does for crippling fears what Andrew Solomon’s ‘The Noonday Demon’ did for depression
Judaism’s manual of sacred technology prizes holiness over beauty, action over thought, and ritual over belief
In Zeruya Shalev’s fearless new ‘The Remains of Love,’ lives on a kibbutz stand as a parable of Israel
Biblical examples of righteousness and wickedness show that in Judaism, goodness remains possible and divine
A Talmudic problem: Abraham lived before the law was given, so how can his actions be used to interpret the law?
An ancient principle of Judaism, debated at length in the Oral Law, is that it is a sin to count Jews—or is it?
To the Talmudic rabbis, a miracle is more plausible than the notion that their sources were incorrect
A ‘mezuzah,’ like Judaism, is designed for life in this world, not for a messianic future, or for martyrdom
In Slavko Goldstein’s newly translated ‘1941,’ Nazi-backed fascists tear through the Balkans. Yugoslavia never recovered.
The rabbinic tradition arose from the fact that the Bible doesn’t tell us what we need to know to lead our lives
In their faith, Talmudic rabbis kept contradictory thoughts, believing in both the reality of miracles and their unreliability
In the Talmud’s descriptions of self-glorifying and self-enriching Temple priests, lessons for today’s public officials
Homosexuality, Jewishness, and Zionism, in the newly collected letters of the charismatic musician
Daf Yomi: The Talmud provides the Jewish version of well-known Christian gospel about money-changers
The Talmud is not a literary text, yet its role in maintaining the continuity of Jewish history is undeniable
The debut novel ‘The Lion Seeker’ is the kind of representative Jewish epic Herman Wouk used to write