11 09, 2014

Why women must start Shabbat before men

By |2014-09-11T09:21:15-07:00September 11th, 2014|Thoughts|

                            Why Do Women Light the Sabbath Candles Long before the Sabbath Begins?[1]   If people would take the time to look at the bulletin of an Orthodox Synagogue, they would find something very curious. The women are instructed to light candles several minutes before the men are scheduled to attend the Mincha service, [...]

7 09, 2013

Female reactions and feelings saying Kaddish

By |2013-09-07T22:09:27-07:00September 7th, 2013|Book Reviews|

By Israel Drazin     Kaddish: Women’s Voices By M. Smart and B. Ashkenas Urim Publications, 2013, 271 pages ISBN 978-965-524-150-1   Smart and Ashkenas collected some fifty essays by articulate women of the various Jewish denominations in which they tell poignant emotional tales about relatives who died and their experiences in saying the mourner’s [...]

10 08, 2013

Why Mistreat the Canaanites?

By |2013-08-10T23:10:38-07:00August 10th, 2013|Thoughts|

                Why does the Bible require Israelites to treat Canaanites brutally?                                             By Israel Drazin     The Torah appears to lack respect for Canaanites and seems to order that they be mistreated. In Deuteronomy 7:2, for example, the Torah states: “You must smite them, utterly destroy them; make no covenant with them, and [...]

4 08, 2013

More on women in the Bible

By |2013-08-04T05:53:47-07:00August 4th, 2013|Book Reviews, Thoughts|

                                                                       By Israel Drazin   Dr. Naomi Harris Rosenblatt examines the biblical report of the lives and activities of seventeen biblical women in her well-researched, insight-filled, and frequently innovative reading of biblical tales in her 2005 book After the Apple. The women lived as second-class citizens under the authority and control of men: fathers, [...]

2 08, 2013

Women’s Lives in Biblical Times

By |2013-08-02T08:02:40-07:00August 2nd, 2013|Thoughts|

                                                                                                                      By Israel Drazin   Many people recognize that women have still not entirely succeeded in participating in society as they should. How were women portrayed in the Hebrew Bible? Professor Jennie R. Eberling answers this question in her very readable and informative 2010 book Women’s Lives in Biblical Times where she analyses biblical [...]

18 06, 2013

Disparaging statements about women

By |2013-06-18T07:00:46-07:00June 18th, 2013|Thoughts|

                                                                                                               By Israel Drazin   I think that women should be treated with respect and have the same rights as men. Many ancient Jewish sages felt the same, but not all of them. The question was raised[1] why did the very wise Greek philosopher Aristotle,[2] disparage women? The answer given is that he was [...]

14 01, 2013

Bizarre Wedding Practices

By |2013-01-14T07:38:21-07:00January 14th, 2013|Thoughts|

                                                                       By Israel Drazin   Dina and I were married 52 years ago by a Hasidic rabbi in Germany. His wife and children were murdered by the Nazis. He remarried a woman whose family was also murdered. At the synagogue services on the Shabbat before our wedding ceremony, when I was called to the [...]

7 01, 2011

Prayers and women

By |2011-03-15T09:44:31-07:00January 7th, 2011|Book Reviews, Thoughts|

On Changes in Jewish Liturgy Options and Limitations By Daniel Sperber Urim Publications, 2010, 221 pages   Reviewed by Israel Drazin             This is the second recent volume where Daniel Sperber, professor, rabbi, author of thirty books and more than four hundred articles, a leading expert on Jewish laws and customs, addresses what many consider [...]

7 01, 2011

Discrimination against women

By |2011-03-15T09:48:15-07:00January 7th, 2011|Book Reviews, Jewish Books, Thoughts|

Women and Men in Communal Prayer Halakhic Perspectives Edited by Chaim Trachtman, MD Ktav Publishing House, 2010, 418 pages   Reviewed by Israel Drazin             One of the great world tragedies is the systematic exclusion of women from many activities and positions, making them, in essence, only partial citizens, reminiscent of blacks being considered only three-fifths [...]