November 5, 2023

PODCAST: Shalom Rosenberg’s Narrow Bridge of Faith

Shalom Rosenberg z”l, in his essay “A Narrow Bridge: R Nahman of Breslov’s Faith in a World of Doubt” (TRADITION, Fall 2023), writes of finding faith in a world of confusion and at a time that many are plagued by doubt. Because Rosenberg’s essay presents itself to us with such unexpected timeliness, in these days of war and worry and doubt, we discuss it with Rabbi Dr. Zvi Leshem on the Tradition Podcast.
November 2, 2023


For over three weeks we have been witness to the documentary evidence of the unimaginable horror and bloodshed—some it it produced by the vile perpetrators themselves. Chaim Strauchler questions how Jewish law might guide our consumption of violent images and videos produced by terrorist groups.
October 30, 2023

Psalms for a State of Vertigo

Israeli poet Bacol Serlui turned to Tehillim as the rockets began falling on Simhat Torah and her son was called away to war: “I sat with my Tehillim, reciting from beginning to end until the close of the holiday, until my tears dried up and the breaking news broke me once again. I recite the Psalms again and again and feel that the Tehillim are reading me, dubbing my fear and sorrow, giving me a voice. Three millennia ago a Jew sat and poured out the agony of his soul in times of peace and war, and here he reaches out a hand of prayer and speaks to our own day, until we will be redeemed.” Read Serlui’s essay on King David, the warrior poet, and his Psalms’ ability to reach us across the millennia.
October 26, 2023

Alt+SHIFT: The Hope of Tamir Granot

Lt. Amitai Granot was killed on the northern front last week. Days earlier, his father R. Tamir Granot, Rosh Yeshivat Orot Shaul in Tel Aviv, R. Tamir published an essay in Makor Rishon about the implications of the Hamas massacre, the meaning of an old-world pogrom in modern Israel, and the task before us as a nation. Yitzchak Blau presents this summary with the hope that these efforts honor the Granot family and the memory of Amitai z”l.
October 23, 2023

PODCAST: When God’s Presence Overwhelms and Eludes

TRADITION’s recent issue features Dr. Yosefa Fogel Wruble essay, “Psalm 139: When God’s Presence Both Overwhelms and Eludes,” which explores the theological relevance in understanding this psalm as a form of emotional struggle with God. When the essay was written no one could have foreseen how its themes would become presciently relevant to our current moment—so we thought it would be appropriate to chat with the author about what she wrote in light of the events on Simhat Torah and the war.
October 22, 2023

ARCHIVES: Why Yom Kippur?

A half-century ago the Jewish world found itself in a situation not terribly dissimilar from our own. War arrived brutally and by surprise on an Autumn Yom Tov. Writing in the pages of TRADITION following the war, Rabbi A.H. Rabinowitz, Chief Rabbi of the Air Force, asked “Why Yom Kippur?”—aside from Egyptian tactical strategy and hope for surprise, what was the spiritual meaning of the State being attacked on our holy day?
October 19, 2023

War in Jewish Tradition

In reviewing a special issue on War in Jewish thought (TRADITION, Winter 2006), Yitzchak Blau draws to our attention material from our journal’s archive. This collection of essays remains sadly appropriate to the current moment, and we hope it will help frame your thinking about the traumas we have experienced these past two weeks as we pray that the IDF proves successful in defeating our enemies.
October 16, 2023

The Abnormal Matzav

At this writing, ten days into the war, the initial shock, horror, and trauma have in no way abated and all thoughts are on the “matzav”—a most abnormal situation. TRADITION’s editor, Jeffrey Saks, writing from Israel, considers the challenges for our religious community, the heartening reality of Jewish unity, and some sharp questions it poses for our way forward.
October 11, 2023

PODCAST: From Yom Kippur 1973 to Simchat Torah 2023

TRADITION and the Rabbinical Council of America brought together authors from our recent issue on “The Yom Kippur War After 50 Years” as they discuss insights from their contributions to our pages and the sudden, tragic timeliness of that issue for events unfolding in Israel. Watch or listen to the recording.