Judaism


A while back, while cruising the web for interesting material regarding Hebrew and Judaism, I stumbled across the linguistic research of Professor Isaac E. Mozeson.  Through his database of related word cognates from the various lingustic dialects spoken around the globe he has begun to establish the common threads which tie these varying tongues to a single ancestral spoken language.  He’s dubbed this language “Edenic,” he’s published books, a power point slide show and now even a video game which you can play at http://www.edenics.net.

When I first saw the Power Point presentation I wanted to take the opportunity to make that presentation available through some of the newer “web 2.0” venues like youtube and facebook.  It also turned out that Professor Mozeson had a few changes in mind for the slideshow.  So, I set out to update what was already a fantastic tool for introducing people to the concepts of Edenics.

Finally, that update is ready and has been officially released to the public.  It is a bit shy of 35 minutes in total and broken into four parts to meet youtube’s 10 minute time limit.

So, without further ado, please enjoy the new Introduction to Edenics 5770:

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Question of the Week – Ask the Rabbi
Question:

I often hear rabbis complain that the Jewish people are shrinking due to intermarriage and assimilation. But it is you rabbis who are the major obstacle to Judaism growing! If you would make conversion a bit easier, many more non-Jews would join us. Why do you stubbornly insist on a long and difficult conversion process, when you are closing the door to many potential converts?

This question is definitely relevant considering I had thought I was going to complete my conversion to Judaism – which began some 38 years ago when I had my bris – sometime in the next few weeks.  For the last year I have been corresponding with a Rabbi from Chabad.org who was trying to help me arrange to complete my conversion by going to the mikveh (ritual bath).  When I was adopted as an infant, the Rabbi who officiated over my bris told my mom and dad that I didn’t need to go to the mikveh unless I was going to be an orthodox rabbi.

After my bris I was raised by my family as a Jew and even completed by bar mitzvah studies and came before the community to read my Torah portion.  For all I knew, I was as Jewish as the paschal lamb and matzah.  You can imagine my surprise, a year ago, when I learned through my own study of Torah that my conversion is not considered complete until I immerse in a mikveh under the supervision of a beit din (rabbinical legal court).

My revelations came after I wrote My First Tefillin. As soon as I realized the problem I contacted the “Ask a Rabbi” program through Chabad.org and then spent several agonizing months corresponding with the Rabbi from Chabad.  He asked me to provide proof of my bris, so I tried to contact the orthodox rabbi who officiated at my bris only to find that he passed away a few years back and his grandson had taken over his practice.  Luckily, he was able to find the paperwork for my bris and send me a copy which I forwarded to the Chabad rabbi.  Finally, I was informed that my bris was kosher and I only needed to immerse in the mikveh to complete the conversion process.

Unfortunately, there is no beit din within a hundred miles of where I live so, we determined to wait until I would travel to Los Angeles for my sister’s wedding to do the mikveh.  Now my sister finalized her wedding plans and we are preparing to travel down for the happy event.  So, I contacted the Chabad rabbi about arranging my immersion and he referred me to the Rabbinical Council of California.

Today I spoke with the Rabbinic Administrator and was informed that they are not willing to arrange my immersion unless I am going to move into and join an orthodox Jewish community!

There is no orthodox Jewish community where I live and I am already practicing the most orthodox form of Judaism of anyone in my area.  I am the only person in this area who even puts on tefillin or says Shemah on a daily basis.  Even the local rabbi doesn’t wear tefillin, yet somehow I am not good enough yet to be immersed in the mikveh.

Let my story be a lesson to any Jewish couples adopting a non-Jewish child.  Have the child’s conversion completed properly.  Do not leave it to the child to “decide” when they are older because it becomes prohibitively difficult.

This can also serve as a lesson to those of you who may be frustrated at trying to convert to Judaism now.  If it is this difficult for someone like me, who spent the last 38 years believing he was truly Jewish, then I’m sure whatever hardships you are facing in your own conversion process can be overcome. I can’t help but think that if it was this difficult for Avram Aveinu then Noah would have never been born.

G-d willing I will eventually find my path to join with my brothers and sisters as b’nei Yisrael and will merit to help bring the light of H-shem to the world.

Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean – A7 Exclusive Features – Israel News – Israel National News

Apparently, there is a book titled Jewish Pirates of the Caribbean: How a Generation of Swashbuckling Jews Carved Out an Empire in the New World in Their Quest for Treasure, Religious Freedom–and Revenge which details how many of the Pirates of the Caribbean were actually Jews fleeing the Spanish Inquisition.  Of course, this makes perfect sense, since the Pirates were funded by enemies of Spain it only makes sense that Jews would be among those supporters.

This book does not provide proof that Christopher Colombus was Jewish, it seems clear that he was at least sympathetic to the Jewish plight of religious freedom.

 

WEJEW Video and Mediashare Community – The Nice Jewish Girl Cool Rap Video

Archaeologist says he found oldest Hebrew writing – International Herald Tribune
HIRBET QEIYAFA, Israel: An Israeli archaeologist has discovered what he believes is the oldest known Hebrew inscription on a 3,000-year-old pottery shard — a find that suggests Biblical accounts of the ancient Israelite kingdom of David could have been based on written texts.

An American soldier makes a blessing on the Four Species in a sukkah set up with the help of the Aleph Institute at a base in the Middle East.

An American soldier makes a blessing on the Four Species in a sukkah set up with the help of the Aleph Institute at a base in the Middle East.

Special Shipments Bring Holiday Cheer to Jewish Soldiers Stationed Abroad – Stories – Chabad-Lubavitch News

I just wanted to share this story about helping our troops feel at home as they fight to bring liberty and democracy to the rest of the world.  The greatest promise of America is that we can be Jewish, Buddist, Muslim, Hindu, Christian, there is no law against practicing any religion.  We can live our lives as pious and observant members of our own religion while also living as patriotic Americans who revere and uphold the Constitution and Bill of Rights upon which the laws of our great country were founded.

Teruah – Jewish Music: Aharon Razels Crembo Song

I remember hearing a great song about an amazing little cream-filled chocolate treat made in Israel called a Krembo.  When I googled the song I found it with this cute little video.  It’s a great song, I be those Crembos are tasty, too.

^^

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