January 19, 2023

Alt+SHIFT: Deot #102

Surveying a recent issue of the Hebrew periodical “Deot,” Yitzchak Blau continues to “translate” contemporary Hebrew commentary on communal concerns in our Alt+SHIFT series. In this installment he looks at writers who question the effectiveness of merging conservative cultural thought and Religious Zionism.
January 17, 2023

Summer 2022 Open Access

TRADITION 54:3 (Summer 2022), with a special section on Jewish Universalism, has just been released as an open-access issue. Also in this issue: The curious case of Prozbul's disappearance and reemergence; cannabis kashrut questions; R. Esriel Hildesheimer on women's Torah education;  the relationship between fear and trust in Tanakh and classical commentaries; and book reviews. Peruse the Table of Contents and start reading this particularly engaging installment of the Journal of Orthodox Jewish Thought.
January 15, 2023

New and Noteworthy Books

TRADITION’s seasonal roundup of noteworthy new titles in Jewish studies and learning, with offerings on the case for Orthodoxy, the philosophy of the Siddur and of the Shalosh Regalim, 13th-century Jewish moral lessons, and more.
January 12, 2023

Alt+SHIFT: Striking Roots

In this week’s Alt+SHIFT, “translating” trends in Israeli intellectual life from right to left, Yitzchak Blau presents ideas from Chaim Navon’s Jewish critique of postmodernism’s most deleterious effects of civilization. We each choose our own destiny, but we attempt to abandon our “communities of fate” at our own peril.
January 8, 2023

Lonely Man and ChatGPT

Can artificial intelligence generate an interpretation of “The Lonely Man of Faith”? Can it do so as a rap battle? Do we want it to? Ned Krasnopolsky consulted with the oracle of ChatGPT. Read his results.
January 5, 2023

Alt+SHIFT: R. Tau and the Culture Wars

Continuing his discussion of the Hardal world, Yitzchak Blau’s newest installment of Alt+SHIFT profiles some of the writings of R. Tzvi Tau. Blau calls out a worldview that sees all ideological opponents as sinister people without redeeming qualities attempting to destroy Jewish values. 
January 2, 2023

Concepts in Halakha as Elaborated Upon by the Aggada and Kabbala

Download TRADITION’s special e-book publication of lecture notes, transcribed 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.”
December 29, 2022

Alt+SHIFT: HaHardalim 

Kicking off our new Alt+SHIFT series, helping to “translate” trends in Israeli religious life for readers of TraditionOnline, Yitzchak Blau presents Yair Sheleg’s recent profile of the Haredi Leumi (nationalist ultra-Orthodox camp).
December 27, 2022

Alt+SHIFT: Series Introduction

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.