Alt+SHIFT is the keyboard shortcut allowing us quick transition between input languages on our keyboards—for many readers of TRADITION that’s the move from Hebrew to English (and back again). Yitzchak Blau introduces a new TraditionOnline series offering his insider’s look into trends, ideas, and writings in the Israeli Religious Zionist world helping readers from the Anglo sphere to Alt+SHIFT and gain insight to worthwhile material available only in Hebrew.
Coming soon on TraditionOnline: A digital-only publication of notes prepared by R. Yaakov Homnick, on a course Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik taught at the Bernard Revel Graduate School in 1946–1947. This document presents a sustained argument for the preeminence of Halakha within Jewish tradition, over and above the realms of Aggada and Kabbala. The Rav argues that the centrality of Halakha served to shift the balance of Judaism away from other modes of practice: “The greatest contribution of the Halakha was its purging Judaism of all magical, mythical and ceremonial elements.”
Mrs. Cooperman wishes all readers of TRADITION a good Shabbos - Rosh Hodesh - Hannuka! Revisit her classic wisdom for this Shabbat in the timeless essay of our esteemed editor emeritus, Rabbi Emanuel Feldman, who taught us that old Mrs. C, unlearned as she may have been, “poured out before the Creator every Shabbat morning” a “torrent of words” which contained “a key ingredient of worship.”
The Maccabees won the battle, but did they lose the war? Modern scholarship demonstrates that Judaism was irrevocably transformed by its encounter with Hellenism, which ushered in a new way of thinking about existence and God’s place within it. Post-modern philosophers raised searing critiques of Hellenistic metaphysics and theology. In a remarkable passage, Rav Kook articulates the sharpest of these. He goes on to read the Hanukkah miracle as an allegory for the ultimate resolution to the crisis, one which anticipates key ideas of postmodern thinker Jacques Derrida. Aton Holzer explains....