What does archaeology tell us about the origins of Judaism?

“I’ve looked for a period of time when we know that something called Judaism exists, when we have clear evidence that ancient Judeans knew about the Torah and were keeping the laws of the Torah.”
By ROSSELLA TERCATIN JUNE 10, 2021

Dr. Yonatan Adler, senior lecturer at Ariel University, speaks to The Jerusalem Post
When did ancient Jews start keeping mitzvot? What kind of evidence do we have of observance of dietary and purity laws, or practices like wrapping tefillin? The Origins of Judaism Archaeological Project, a new project directed by Dr. Yonatan Adler, a senior lecturer at Ariel University, aims to shed light on some of these questions. (more…)

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Sheikh Jarrah, Shimon Hatzadik: A tale of two gravesites in Jerusalem

The current dispute surrounding the Sheikh Jarrah area has deep roots, stretching back to the first years of Arab and Jewish settlement outside the walls of Jerusalem’s Old City, in the 19th century.

Security forces clash with protesters during a protest against a visit of right wing politicians and against Israel’s plan to demolish some houses of Palestinians in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah on May 10, 2021 (photo credit: OLIVIER FITOUSSI/FLASH90)

Security forces clash with protesters during a protest against a visit of right wing politicians and against Israel’s plan to demolish some houses of Palestinians in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah on May 10, 2021
(photo credit: OLIVIER FITOUSSI/FLASH90)

 The current conflicts in Jerusalem are not traceable to a single source. The always charged period of Ramadan, the cancellation of Palestinian elections, the attacks on ultra-Orthodox Jews and the response to these by Jewish far-right activists, the placing of barriers at the Damascus Gate, and the frustrations born of a year of lockdowns are all important contributory factors. 

The long dispute over housing rights in the neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, however, forms a prominent ingredient in the incendiary mix. The Supreme Court this week was due to rule on the appeal of three Arab families seeking the overturning of an eviction order against them. The ruling has now been postponed.

What is the background to this “real estate dispute between two private parties,” as the Foreign Ministry website refers to it? And why has  “ Sheikh Jarrah ” become a rallying cry for Arabs and their supporters both in Jerusalem and with echoes far beyond it?  (more…)

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What defines Jewish music?

From Shlomo Carlebach to Debbie Friedman to Yiddish tunes, there is a vast history to explore.

ARED STEIN blows a shofar as Rabbi Naomi Levy plays a drum at the Nashuva Spiritual Community Jewish New Year celebration in LA, 2015 (photo credit: LUCY NICHOLSON / REUTERS)

ARED STEIN blows a shofar as Rabbi Naomi Levy plays a drum at the Nashuva Spiritual Community Jewish New Year celebration in LA, 2015
(photo credit: LUCY NICHOLSON / REUTERS)

What is Jewish music? (more…)

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Israel post-COVID-19: Haredi integration or end of liberal democracy?

This is the fourth and final installment in a series of in-depth articles examining key aspects of ultra-Orthodox society and its role in and influence on the country today.

HUNDREDS OF haredi protesters gather outside the IDF recruitment office in Jerusalem’s Mekor Baruch neighborhood to protest IDF induction, in 2018. (photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)

HUNDREDS OF haredi protesters gather outside the IDF recruitment office in Jerusalem’s Mekor Baruch neighborhood to protest IDF induction, in 2018.
(photo credit: MARC ISRAEL SELLEM/THE JERUSALEM POST)

Passover 2015, I was in the midst of my term as Canadian ambassador to Israel, facing a dilemma that so many do, particularly those finding themselves without a home or family. (more…)

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The Last Class in Munkacs

The Munkacs Hebrew Gymnasium was among the most progressive experiments in the history of Jewish secondary education.

Bob Bahr – September 18, 2019

Students of the Munkacs Hebrew Gymnasium in 1941 on a holiday outing.

Students of the Munkacs Hebrew Gymnasium in 1941 on a holiday outing.

It was one of the most progressive experiments in the history of Jewish secondary education in Eastern Europe. The Munkacs Hebrew Gymnasium, in a major Jewish community in the Carpathian Mountains, was established in 1925 as a school where every subject in a modern high school curriculum was taught in Hebrew. Young Jewish men and women studied alongside one another as equals. Historians have described it as the most prestigious Jewish high school east of Warsaw. (more…)

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Coronavirus and the haredim: By the numbers

Why the haredi status quo cannot be sustained

By VIVIAN BERCOVICI – MARCH 11, 2021

 

Gathering at the Rashbi gravesite, Meron, June 6, 2020 (photo credit: DAVID COHEN/FLASH 90)

Gathering at the Rashbi gravesite, Meron, June 6, 2020 (photo credit: DAVID COHEN/FLASH 90)

This is the third in an in-depth series of articles examining key aspects of haredi society and its role in and influence on the country today. (more…)

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Haredim drift further from Israeli mainstream

This is the second in an in-depth series of articles examining key aspects of haredi society and its role in and influence on the country today.

BY  VIVIAN BERCOVICI – MARCH 4, 2021

SIMMERING ANGER: The torched bus burns in Bnei Brak in late January. (photo credit: ISRAEL POLICE SPOKESMAN)

SIMMERING ANGER: The torched bus burns in Bnei Brak in late January.
(photo credit: ISRAEL POLICE SPOKESMAN)

 The burning bus. Torched and aflame on a main street in Bnei Brak a haredi enclave abutting Tel Aviv, the bus was seen around the world in late January. It has become an iconic image, seen by some to reflect the lawlessness and autonomy among haredim in Israel that has become somewhat regular in the COVID era. Not even the firefighters would rush to douse the blaze without a police escort. (more…)

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