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Shmoozing the Dharma, Davening on the Sly

By Moshe Waldoks

While fierce February winds howled outside as another week of winter’s deep freeze began, inside a meditation hall in Barre, Mass., 100 people sat silently, many wrapped in blankets. Some cross-legged and others in chairs were part of a weeklong silent metta retreat hosted by the Insight Meditation Society, based inRead More


Sundry Lessons of the Exodus

By David Curzon

This week’s portion, Pekude, covers the last chapters of Exodus and so is a good place to try to draw some general lessons from our story of stories.The poets have been finding metaphors and similes in Exodus for quite some time. John Greenleaf Whittier (1807-1892), for example, found in the burning bush (Exodus 3:1-6) an extended metaphor forRead More


Sephardic Music Comes Out of the Shadows

By Andrew Muchin

More than faithfully reproducing centuries-old Sephardic melodies, an emerging group of American Jewish songwriters is developing a Jewish world-beat sound that includes Sephardic melodies and instruments, whether sung in Hebrew, English, Ladino (Sephardic Judeo-Spanish) or even Yiddish.In St. Louis, for example, Jewish Renewal Rabbi James StoneRead More


Having a Gay Old Time At Uncle’s Brit Ahava

By Marjorie Ingall

Josie’s childhood is already pretty different from mine. I took my first airplane flight when I was a year old (to see Grandma in Florida); she took hers at 5 weeks (to see Auntie Ellen wed in Milwaukee). I wasn’t present at my own baby-naming; my dad ran into shul on a Monday morning and had an aliya. Josie, meanwhile, had her own carefullyRead More


Big Brass on Board for Intrepid ‘Salute’

By Masha Leon

The “winds of war” were on hold aboard the Intrepid Sea-Air-Space Museum for the February 14 Intrepid Museum Foundation’s Salute to Freedom Award dinner honoring Secretary of Defense Donald Rumsfeld. Greetings by the foundation’s chief operating officer, BillRead More


Columnist Castigated: Minority of One?

By Wendy Belzberg

My February 7 “Ask Wendy” column on collective punishment was ill received by many readers. Whenever I discover that my opinion is in the minority — a minority of one, it seems — I am prepared to take my licks in public. The points made in the letters below are compelling and valid, and I would have been well served to qualifyRead More


DER YIDDISH-VINKL March 7, 2003

Mark Warshawsky (1840-1907) was a versatile poet whose songs voiced both hope and despair, depending on the situation he was describing. In his poem-song “Dem Milner’s Trern” (“The Miller’s Tears”), he sounds a note of melancholy. It is a dark dirge about the Jews who are being driven from their shtetl in czarist Russia. To the miller,Read More


T.G.I.S.

By Ephraim Z. Buchwald

We live in a pressure cooker. You can’t watch the news or read a newspaper without being bombarded with stories about war and terror threats. Our government gives us tips on how to prepare for possible chemical, biological or radiological attacks. The economy and stock market continue to sag. The Jewish psyche is taking a thrashing theseRead More


When Empty Nesters Go Looking for God

By Lisa Keys

Growing up in Birmingham, Ala., Gennye Feldman, along with her mother and her four siblings, kept kosher, ate Sabbath dinner on Fridays and drove to services at their Conservative synagogue every weekend.“Judaism was definitely a core part of our family values,” Gennye, a 28-year-old marketing manager, told the Forward.Now a young adult livingRead More


Designer Molly Stern Trots Out Garb for Bodies Botticelli Favored

By Malina Saval

When 30-year-old fashion entrepreneur Molly Stern was still a teenager, her boyfriend took her to a museum to gawk at the Botticelli paintings. “That’s your body,” he told the cute, curvy pubescent girl. “They’ve been painting you for centuries.”Of course, most Jewish women who can’t squeeze their hips into a pair of made-for-shiksasRead More


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