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
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
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
By elevating witches and demons to the level of gods, Talmudic rabbis diminished religious thought
In the Talmud, examples of real-life rabbinic behavior and the intensely personal nature of lawmaking
In the Bible, the rabbis had the most accurate possible description of the world—a flawed and limited cosmology
Daf Yomi: The one protection God granted the Jews was to scatter them, so that no single enemy could destroy them all at once
In this week’s Daf Yomi, deference, privilege, and the appearance of impropriety from the rabbis of ancient Jewish society
Instead of asking us to passively agree with the rabbis, oral law engages the intellect in concrete problems of logic and interpretation