December 2022

A Surprise Chanukah Celebration

If you planned to spend the holidays with family, I hope that you traveled comfortably and safely despite bad weather disrupting thousands of flights in the United States last week. Yet even when the weather cooperates, flight turmoil abounds. When my husband was invited to speak at a Shabbat program for politically conservative Jewish students […]

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Is There a Difference Between a Cow and a Cat?

It says in the Bible that a good man cares for his “beast.” Does this just mean animals that are “useful” such as cows that give meat and milk and other “useful” animals, or does it mean all pets, such as dogs and cats. P.S. We like your show [Ancient Jewish Wisdom] very much. We

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Coeducation or Single-Sex Schools?

Dear Rabbi and Susan, Co-education, meaning girls and boys taught together in one school depends on societies. I think that it is useful educationally because boys will be more serious because girls in the general like to be serious. The girls’ devotion to studying inspires the boys. Also it helps more cooperation and understanding among

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Who Wrote This

For the most part, I haven’t paid attention to the expanding selection of stories about AI – artificial intelligence. I’m more interested in honing my own brain and finding friends with whom I can have intelligent discussions. However, three of the men in our family follow technological news attentively. (Yes, women can enjoy technology, but

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Oil Painting

Can you spot a connection between all these English words? A—AN—ANT—ANTI—ANTIC—ANTICIPATE No, of course not. Other than each being formed by adding letters to the previous word, there is no conceptual connection. Yet in the Lord’s language, the meanings of the four following words are strongly linked: חשׁמנה שׁמנה שׁמנ שׁמ Reading from right to

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Does a Jewish Year Really Have 13 Months?

I have a question. Are there thirteen months in a Jewish year?What does the year of double Adar mean? What is its significance and what spiritual implications are there? I appreciate you being there. Mariam S. Dear Mariam, The answer to your question is both yes and no. Most years, the Jewish year consists of

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Brave New World

By the time this Musing is published, the Goodreads website should have announced the winners of their 2022 Annual Goodreads Choice Awards. Almost six million subscribers participated in the vote, and I admit to not being one of them. I am more of a taker than a giver on Goodreads. The site, where people share

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Witches, witches everywhere?

Hi Rabbi Lapin and Susan, I am a home organizer which means that people invite me into their houses. Today, I was surprised by the house I visited when I saw some odd items. The homeowner explained she has added the practices of a nature religion to her previous spiritual Buddhism, and she thinks of

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Taking Tuesday

What is the inadvertent message of Giving Tuesday, Mothers’ Day, Veterans’ Day and all the myriad other “Days” that are scattered throughout the year? Think about it. We owe honor to our parents and veterans every day of the year. We should feel the obligation to give to charity every single time we receive or

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