This month’s blog post marks my 10-year anniversary writing for feminismandreligion.com (FAR) and my 122nd post. I would just like to take a moment to acknowledge this milestone and thank the community for both its dialogue with me and support… Read More ›
This week’s Torah portion is Vayechi, or Genesis 47:28-50:26. It is the last part of the Joseph saga (For my thoughts on two other parshot relating to Joseph, see Mikeitz and Vayigash). While there is much that could be said,… Read More ›
On our table, the crimson pomegranate seeds my mother had carefully separated from the skin glistened like jewels illumined from within; a pale green jam made from the grated flesh of a gourd, scented with rosewater and studded with thin slivers of blanched almonds, shone with a numinous, interior light. Bowls of black-eyed peas simmered with cinnamon and tomatoes were arrayed beside a delicately-flavored leek omelet, breaded and fried brains, roasted beets, fresh dates, apples, and—best of all—a previously untasted new fruit of the season: usually fresh fig or persimmon or prickly pear.
This post is dedicated to Carol P. Christ. I knew her first as my professor and then my friend for over 15 years. May her memory be a blessing. This week’s Torah portion is Shofetim (also spelt Shoftim), or Deutoronomy… Read More ›
This week’s Torah portion is Devarim (Deuteronomy 1:1-3:22). In it, the Isrealites are preparing to enter the Promised Land, as the last of the sinful generation have died. Most of the parshah consists of Moses recalling the divinely sanctioned wars… Read More ›
This week’s Torah portion is Chukat. It covers a lot of ground. There are the mitzvot concerning purification with a red cow, the deaths of important individuals, and the continued wanderings in the desert, which are rife with complaining Israelites,… Read More ›
This week’s Torah portion is Bamidbar (Numbers 1:1-4:20). Mostly, it concerns itself with: a census; the organization of the Isrealites in camp as well as while traveling; who is responsible for which parts of the Tabernacle; and the redemption of… Read More ›
It is often said that every year when you read the same Torah passages, you are in a different place, spiritually and otherwise. Therefore, one will always be learning new meanings and discovering new insights from them. No more is… Read More ›
The first time I came across the phrase, I thought I must be making a mistake. “Que Dieu l’enveloppe dans sa matrice,” the passage read in French, “May God’s womb enfold her.” or possibly, “May God enfold her in His womb.” His womb?
It is Hanukah. I have discussed the reasons I have found observing it difficult in a past blog. Namely, as an ecofeminist, I will not celebrate the violence of war or the slaughter of animals at the temple. This year… Read More ›
This year, I published a book called Return to the Place: The Magic, Meditation, and Mystery of Sefer Yetzirah (available from Ben Yehuda Press, benyehudapress.com). Sefer Yetzirah, or the Book of Creation, is an ancient Jewish mystical work (written in… Read More ›
One of the basic tenants of feminist methodology in religion is the recovery of women’s history. There are many ways to approach such a task. In religions with sacred writings, one avenue for recovery may be reinterpreting them. This… Read More ›
The Torah reading for the first day of Rosh haShanah, the Jewish new year, is not, as one might expect, the creation of the world (Rosh haShanah was Friday night, Saturday and Sunday, 9/18-9/20). Instead, the set reading is Genesis… Read More ›
On the eve of the Jewish Sabbath and the start of Rosh Hashanah, Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg breathed her last breath. She was 87. She fought so hard for so long. She is an American patriot, hero, champion… Read More ›
Toward the end of her complex odyssey, Anna finds herself alone in an ancient Istanbul synagogue, where at long last she unreservedly “name[s] herself” a Jew and experiences connection with a God that “fuse[s] both male and female” and “from that wholeness birth[s] mercy and love.” Vowing to work to “help repair [the] world”–tikkun olam–she moves forward to face her life with a “sense of wholeness” that had eluded her for so long.
Jill Hammer’s recent post on midrash surrounding the Biblical figure of Eve (Hava in Hebrew) sparked me to muse again about the fact that, despite its patriarchal roots and overlay, Judaism is a much more flexible tradition than Christianity and,… Read More ›
Around the age of 8, or maybe 10, I learned my aunt had had a hysterectomy. I remember visiting her house either shortly before or after the operation. I can’t remember which, and it doesn’t really matter. At the time,… Read More ›
A few weeks ago a Slovak journalist reached out to me about the new Netflix four-part series entitled Unorthodox. In the email, the journalist wrote that they had read about my work as a Jewish feminist and wanted some insight… Read More ›
In my last blog post, I explained what we lost when the Israelites became monotheists. That post looked at the move to monotheism from a more historical, feminist perspective. In this post, I want to understand monotheism from a more… Read More ›
I contemplated doing a post on the current rising issues of the Coronavirus but as so much of life has been stopped, altered, and/or rearranged, that I figured I would embody the proverbial statement of “Just Keep Calm and Carry… Read More ›
The Tanakh, Jewish scriptures, predominately call the deity king and lord and use the masculine pronoun. These images evoke a certain level of power. Just how powerful the deity is in then multiplied when “he” is addressed as “G-d of… Read More ›
I have always had a particular fascination with women warriors—particularly ancient and medieval ones. Joan of Arc was a favorite, as was Artemis, Greek goddess of the hunt. My father had a sword from Spain hanging on his wall in… Read More ›
This week’s Torah portion, or parshah, is Shemot (Exodus 1:1-6:1). This parshah sets the scene for the liberation of the Israelites from slavery both by introducing main characters and elaborating on just how difficult life was for the Isrealites under… Read More ›