Math Problem for Talmudic Rabbis: Building the Right Size Sukkah

Pi, irrational numbers, and squaring the circle are all brought to bear to find justifications for tradition

How Large Must a Sukkah Be To Be Called a Sukkah—And Yet Still Be Far From Heaven?

In dissenting opinions, Talmudic rabbis propose and debate every detail of Sukkot’s booth and, in so doing, measure God

In the Talmud, One Sin Is Beyond Repentance: Giving God and Jews a Bad Name

A holy desecration is unethical in part because of the social pressure to reflect well on the tribe

For Some Believers Trying To Connect With Jesus, the Answer Is To Live Like a Jew

The Torah-observant gentiles of the Hebrew Roots movement get circumcised, lay tefillin, and grow peyos

Too Much, Too Little: Talmudic Rabbis’ Creativity Shines When Interpreting Prohibitions

Manna, and fasting, are not just miracles of sustenance and faith, but also elements of jurisprudence

A Mother’s Kaddish: Mourning for My Son, From the Women’s Section

After my child died, I reconnected with God through prayer—which is the point of Kaddish, on both sides of the mechitza

Some Jewish Acts Seem Meaningless. The Talmud Says You Should Do Them Anyway.

Illogical Jewish laws are ‘matters that Satan challenges’: raising doubts for enemies of Judaism and skeptical Jews

What Happens When the Talmud Asks, ‘What If?’

Probing hypothetical, metaphysical problems was the rabbis’ way of defining what matters most in Judaism

The Talmud Pays Little Attention to What Jews Believe, Yet Asks Them To Have Faith

Judaism’s manual of sacred technology prizes holiness over beauty, action over thought, and ritual over belief

In the Talmud, the Fall of a Priestly Upper Class Is Just Deserts

Biblical examples of righteousness and wickedness show that in Judaism, goodness remains possible and divine

Finding Comfort in Synagogue—But Only When I’m on the Road

Overseas, I sought out ways to connect to the community, but when I came home, my old sense of alienation would quickly return

Which Came First: Abraham and the Patriarchs or Moses and the Torah?

A Talmudic problem: Abraham lived before the law was given, so how can his actions be used to interpret the law?

How Buying a Tallit at 46 Helped Me Claim My Place in the Jewish Community

I’ve struggled for decades to feel comfortable in synagogue as a single woman. Wrapped in a silk prayer shawl, I finally felt at home.

What the Talmud Would Say About the Pew Survey of American Jews: Stop Counting

An ancient principle of Judaism, debated at length in the Oral Law, is that it is a sin to count Jews—or is it?

My Wig Was Beautiful and Expensive, and Everybody Loved It—Except Me

When I got married, my sheitel was a symbol of my vows and my Orthodoxy. Then it became a symbol of my discontent.

Thank You!

Thank you for subscribing to the Tablet Magazine Daily Digest.
Please tell us about you.