March 28, 2024

TRADITION Questions: “Ghost Mitzvot” Response

Chaim Strauchler recently introduced us to the concept of “Ghost Mitzvot” which are beginning to come “back to life” with renewed interest and observance in our modern era. They have also awoken a set of questions by a pair of interlocutors aiming to tease out differences in the examples cited. Yaakov Jaffe, following an earlier post about tekhelet by Baruch Sterman, considers the case of new wheat (hadash) and the forces at play.
March 26, 2024

Koach Eitan

In 2017 a stroke deprived Eitan Ashman of many of his language facilities, but not of his mind or passion for Torah. A new Haggadah gathers many sensitive insights crafted by Eitan himself, together with voices of many friends, neighbors, and teachers. Jeffrey Saks writes that because it arrives at a particular moment in which we are all feeling battered and in need of some extra “koach,” these elegantly simple observations on the Haggadah—together with the useful and commonsensical tips to make our Seder more inclusive—are so touching and so powerful.
March 25, 2024

REPLY: Revenant Mitzvot

Responding to Chaim Strauchler’s recent essay about “Ghost Mitzvot” which fell out of use or disappeared and have surprisingly regained popularity in our own era, Baruch Sterman, of the Ptil Tekhelet Institute explains why the “royal and rarest blue” tzitzit strings and the process of producing them may be more of a unique story.
March 21, 2024

Unpacking the Iggerot: Megilla with a Microphone

In the mid-1960s R. Moshe Feinstein ruled that a microphone could be used for Megilla reading. In the first entry in our new “Unpacking the Iggerot” series, Moshe Kurtz addresses the implications of this decades-old ruling for issues that arose during COVID-19 and for our current post-pandemic era.
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