Parashat Yitro: gratitude, compassion and a cross-sensual experience at Sinai

Rabbi Dr. Paul Shrell-Fox, Lecturer in Family and Community Studies at the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies, discusses two concepts as related in this week’s Parasha.
1. Yitro’s exceptional character; his gratitude to God and the compassion he shows to his son-in-law Moshe and his daughter Zipporah.

2. The voices the nation saw at Sinai: “וכל העם רואים את הקולות.”
Can one actually see a voice?

Find out by watching the video below:

Life Cycle, Tu Bishvat, the environment …and the contested phosphate quarry near Arad

Tu Bishvat is mentioned in the Mishna as Rosh Hashanah L’Ilan, the New Year of the Tree. It gained in popularity when the 16th-century Kabbalists in Safed began to hold a Seder Tu Bishvat and eat up to 30 types of fruits, while the Zionists in the 20th century began to plant trees on Tu Bishvat.

Touching Roots A Tu B’Shvat Exhibition at Neve Schechter

This year on Tu B’Shvat, Neve Schechter will host a very special exhibition. It will display photographs taken in the framework of project conducted in partnership with the Neve Tzedek Municipal High School. The project has been running for five years, and the exhibition opening for Tu B’Shvat will be the fifth one held at the Neve Schechter modern art gallery, a highly acclaimed Tel Aviv exhibition space.

Is it permissible to study Biblical Criticism?

In this responsum I will show that it is permissible to study and teach biblical criticism. I will not endorse a specific school of biblical criticism, but rather the study and teaching of various types of biblical criticism, for the purpose of arriving at the peshat or simple meaning of the Bible. Due to the complexity of the subject, this responsum is divided into nine sections: