Search Results for: Purim

MY BROTHER BENZI, AND HOW TO BE KIND

My late brother Benzi died in a car accident in 2008. Although he is principally remembered for his superlative philanthropy – and to be fair, his philanthropy was exceptional – my own recollections of him revolve around his incredible sensitivity and compassion. Truthfully, his phenomenal generosity – which amounted to many millions of dollars given … Continue reading “MY BROTHER BENZI, AND HOW TO BE KIND”

A DAY LIKE NO OTHER (VIDEO)

One of the Jewish calendar’s most unusual days is Purim, a day of celebration and feasting marked by the type of revelry that is studiously avoided on any other day of the year. This rather curious phenomenon has its roots in the original story of liberation and redemption featured in the Megilla, as Rabbi Dunner … Continue reading “A DAY LIKE NO OTHER (VIDEO)”

A DAY LIKE NO OTHER

One of the Jewish calendar’s most unusual days is Purim, a day of celebration and feasting marked by the type of revelry that is studiously avoided on any other day of the year. This rather curious phenomenon has its roots in the original story of liberation and redemption featured in the Megilla, as Rabbi Dunner … Continue reading “A DAY LIKE NO OTHER”

DON’T SET YOURSELF APART (PODCAST)

Inspired by the recent campaign among American Haredim to join the World Zionist Organization (WZO), Rabbi Dunner offers a summary of the history of Haredi ant-Zionism, and the evolution of attitudes that has resulted in this latest phenomenon, a stunning development that echoes in an important but often overlooked aspect of the Purim story.

DON’T SET YOURSELF APART

Over the past few weeks, I have noted a major shift in the Jewish world, a shift that relates to the Haredi (ultra-orthodox) community in America and the startling decision by their most respected leaders to put up a slate for election to the World Zionist Organization (WZO). But before I delve into this astonishing … Continue reading “DON’T SET YOURSELF APART”

JUST REMEMBER, IT’S PERSONAL (PODCAST)

Rabbi Dunner addresses the strange annual custom of remembering and never forgetting Amalek, a long-extinct warrior-nation who attacked the Israelites after they left Egypt. God demands their obliteration, but ironically they would have long been gone and forgotten if we were not expected to mention them each year at Parshat Zachor. Using the fact that … Continue reading “JUST REMEMBER, IT’S PERSONAL (PODCAST)”

ALCOHOL INDUCED HOMICIDE: THE CASE OF RABBA & RABBI ZEIRA

The Talmud (Megilla 7b) records the opinion of Rava, who directs us to become so inebriated on Purim that we are unable to tell the difference between ‘cursed is Haman’ and ‘blessed is Mordechai’, in other words clueless regarding the villain and hero of the Purim story. Immediately afterward, the Talmud shares the story of … Continue reading “ALCOHOL INDUCED HOMICIDE: THE CASE OF RABBA & RABBI ZEIRA”

JUST REMEMBER, IT’S PERSONAL

Each year, on the Shabbat before Purim, we are instructed to recall the abortive attempt by the nation of Amalek to eliminate Jews from the face of the earth. This incident is the first recorded attempted genocide in history. Truthfully, there is an inherent irony in this directive. On the one hand we are being … Continue reading “JUST REMEMBER, IT’S PERSONAL”