Happy Chanukah

HAPPY CHANUKAH to you and your families. Chanukah is the celebration commemorating the rededication of the second Temple over 2,000 years ago. As a small piece of that continuum, we are in the process of celebrating and rededicating Temple Beth Sholom after 75 years. (more…)

Comments Off on Happy Chanukah

Israel Matters! – December 2021

New Jersey and Israel: Roads Scholars

The New Jersey-Israel Commission (https://nj.gov/state/njic.shtml) was established to foster a spirit of cooperation between the State of Israel and the State of New Jersey. New Jersey is not the only American state with such an office, but here at Israel Matters we have discovered that New Jersey and Israel do in fact have a lot in common. For starters, Israel and New Jersey take up roughly the same amount of space on a map, that is, they are about the same size! But how do people get around? (more…)

Comments Off on Israel Matters! – December 2021

Israel Matters! – November 2021

 

Dome on the Range

After the failure of the Bill Clinton-moderated 2000 Camp David peace talks between Palestinian Chairman Yasser Arafat and Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak, Palestinians launched the Second Intifada, a violent uprising against Israel that regularly featured terror attacks targeting Israeli civilians. The initial terror tactics involved shootings into outlying buildings in Israeli towns or on Israelis driving along roads. (more…)

Comments Off on Israel Matters! – November 2021

Cancel Culture

There was a special gift that G-d gave us at the dawn of creation. It was the gift of speech. Speaking is an important part of being human.

There is a famous story in the Torah that tells us how we almost lost that Divine gift. The people after the Flood built the Tower of Babel. And they were punished. We know the generation of the Flood sinned and was therefore punished. (more…)

Comments Off on Cancel Culture

“He who saves a life, saves the world.” A Jewish Proverb

Since the Covid-19 Pandemic has become such an important part of our lives, there is an important piece of history to be told and retold, as well. I always feel very proud reading this story. Some of you may have heard of it before, but it’s important enough to be repeated.
“He who saves a life, saves the world.” A Jewish Proverb (more…)

Comments Off on “He who saves a life, saves the world.” A Jewish Proverb

Temple Mount: Will Jerusalem’s holiest site become religious tug-of-war?

As Jewish visitation to the Temple Mount increases in numbers and scope, Muslim concern grows.

THE WRITER captures Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount during a July visit. (photo credit: JEREMY SHARON)

THE WRITER captures Jewish prayer on the Temple Mount during a July visit.
(photo credit: JEREMY SHARON)

On Yom Kippur of 5728, or 1967 of the Common Era, an event took place the likes of which had not been seen for hundreds of years. (more…)

Comments Off on Temple Mount: Will Jerusalem’s holiest site become religious tug-of-war?

The TBS Book Club

When bad things happen, you must try to turn them into good things. So our shul took the terrible, lonely, bizarre months of the pandemic and came up with programs that promoted togetherness. (more…)

Comments Off on The TBS Book Club

Kol Nidre 5782

Gut yontif. I have heard there are three secrets to a successful Kol Nidre speech. First, have a good beginning. Second, have a good ending and third, have the two as close together as possible. I will try to make it short and sweet. This is (about) the 75th time that a President has stood in front of this congregation on Kol Nidre. What a wonderful milestone and I’m very proud to be standing here right now. (more…)

Comments Off on Kol Nidre 5782

“Only the rich could afford toilets.”

Archaeologists find 2,700-year-old toilet in luxurious palace in Jerusalem

The extraordinary find sheds light on life under the kings of Judah: “Only the rich could afford toilets.”

By ROSSELLA TERCATIN  OCTOBER 5, 2021

 

 The rare stone toilet is 2700 years old. Most likely used by one of the dignitaries of Jerusalem. (photo credit: YOLI SCHWARTZ/IAA)

The rare stone toilet is 2700 years old. Most likely used by one of the dignitaries of Jerusalem.
(photo credit: YOLI SCHWARTZ/IAA)

A privatetoilet dating back

to some 2,700-years was uncovered in a luxurious palace in the Armon Hanatziv neighborhood of Jerusalem, the Israel Antiquities Authority announced Tuesday.

“A private toilet cubicle was very rare in antiquity, and only a few were found to date, most of them in the City of David,” said archaeologist Yaakov Billig, director of the excavation on behalf of the IAA. “In fact, only the rich could afford toilets. A thousand years later, the Mishnah and the Talmud raised various criteria that defined a rich person, and Rabbi Yossi suggested that to be rich is ‘to have the toilet next to his table’.” (more…)

Comments Off on “Only the rich could afford toilets.”