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Explore High Holy Day Liturgy--The Prayers of Awe Series

Rabbi Lawrence A. Hoffman, Ph.D. on “All the World: Universalism, Particularism, and the High Holy Days” from HUC-JIR on Vimeo.

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 IN THE NEWS

Jewish Book Council (Online)
Book Review: Jewish Wisdom for Growing Older: Finding Your Grit & Grace Beyond Midlife

This book is infused with a spiritual approach to looking at aging, whether the reader is an older adult or a practitioner whose work includes working with aging adults. read on


Jewish Book Council (Online)
Book Review: The Chutzpah Imperative: Empowering Today’s Jews for a Life that Matters

Rabbi Feinstein takes us on a journey, exploring the history and practice of having the chutzpah, the audacity, to confront the tough questions of our Judaism. read on


Publishers Weekly (Online)
Book Review: The Chutzpah Imperative: Empowering Today’s Jews for a Life that Matters

Jewish Lights, a Vermont publisher specializing in books on Jewish traditions and culture, doesn’t publish a lot of graphic novels, but the two released by the house have managed to exceed all reasonable expectations. read on


Jlife: Orange County Jewish Life
Increasing Wholeness: Jewish Wisdom & Guided Meditations to Strengthen & Calm Body, Heart, Mind & Spirit

In the last decade or so, meditation and psychology have discovered a peaceful co-existence…Meditation is also linked to Judaism according to community rabbi and author Elie Kaplan Spitz, and technology makes it even more accessible by allowing readers to be participants. Whether you read the hard copy and download the QR code or read it on your iPad and have a direct link–you will have an entirely new experience with his book.read on


E Jewish Philanthropy
Alternative Dues Models and the Larger Paradigm Shift in Synagogue Life

When Allison Fine first became president of Temple Beth Abraham in Tarrytown, N.Y., she was immediately struck by the process by which new and existing members applied for dues relief. read on


Tablet Magazine
A Rabbi Seeking Wisdom Across Religious Lines

Rami Shapiro, author of Amazing Chesed: Living a Grace-Filled Judaism, draws on everything from Zen Buddhism to Catholicism and recovery’s Twelve Steps at his spiritual retreats.
read on


Booklist
Book Review: Ethical Wills & How to Prepare Them: A Guide to Sharing Your Values from Generation to Generation

As both freestanding document and codicil, the ethical will, intended to convey a spiritual legacy, has been
a Jewish tradition since the Bible and the Talmud, coeditor Stampfer says.
read on


Forward
Children of Bergen-Belsen Survivors Warn ‘Never Forget,’ 70 Years After Liberation: God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors

Seventy years after the liberation of the Bergen-Belsen concentration camp by British troops, some 100 people personally touched by the history returned to the site to share their memories and warn against forgetting.
read on


The Jersalem Post
The Holocaust did not end at liberation: God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors

Future generations must be able to see for themselves where the last victims of Bergen-Belsen perished.
read on


Jewschool: Progressive Jews & Views
2015’s Top Ten Social Justice Haggadahs & Supplements: On the Chocolate Trail: A Delicious Adventure Connecting Jews, Religions, History, Travel, Rituals and Recipes to the Magic of Cacao

A Haggadah for a Socially Responsible Chocolate Seder is all about slave labor in the cocoa industry, published by Jewish Lights as a supplement to Rabbi Deborah Prinz’s book On the Chocolate Trail.
read on


The New York Jewish Week
Book Review: Living The Life of Jewish Meditation: A Comprehensive Guide to Practice and Experience

Glick is the author of a new book, Living The Life of Jewish Meditation: A Comprehensive Guide to Practice and Experience (Jewish Lights), a passport into the inner world of sitting, breathing, silence and the soul. He quotes freely and poetically from multiple religious and meditative masters, particularly Hindu (as meditation has long been more of an Eastern cultivation), but this is a thoroughly Jewish book, rooted in Jewish sources, mantras and visualizations.
read on


Los Angeles Jewish Journal
Book Review: God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors

Seventy years ago, the Red Army liberated the death camp at Auschwitz, an event that now marks the observance of International Holocaust Remembrance Day. Ever since that day, we have been struggling to explain and understand what happened in the killing fields and concentration camps where 6 million Jews were tortured and murdered. The latest such effort is found in God, Faith & Identity From the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors.
read on


Newsweek
Feature Story: God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors

A generation will soon come of age having never heard firsthand testimony from a living Holocaust survivor. The aging ranks of those persecuted by the Nazis during World War II are not yet fully diminished, but one day soon they will be.  
read on


Moment Magazine
Feature Story: God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors

Today, on the 70th anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz, the horrors of the Holocaust loom large in the world’s collective memory. But for those who were personally affected, those horrors have never left. Born in the Displaced Persons camp of Bergen-Belsen, the son of two survivors of Auschwitz and Bergen-Belsen, law professor Menachem Rosensaft has devoted his life to the keeping the legacy of Holocaust survivors and their descendants alive.
read on


New York Jewish Week
Book Review: God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors

When I finally forced myself to turn the first pages, Elie Wiesel’s moving prologue ushered me forward. Addressing and commending the many contributing writers, he says, “You are being summoned to do something with pieces of words, with fragments of our vision, with remains of our broken, dispersed memories.” 
read on


Jewish Book Council
The ProsenPeople

Menachem Rosenzaft, editor of God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors, reflects on his past as the of the son of two holocaust survivors.  
read on


Publisher’s Weekly
Book Review: God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors

In this important and poignant collection of thoughts and memories from descendants of Holocaust survivors, 88 men and women from around the world share personal, often heartrending reflections. Readers may shed tears of sorrow, but will be inspired by the strength and courage of this worthy volume. 
read on


Reuters
Book Review: God, Faith & Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors

In a book named God, Faith and Identity from the Ashes: Reflections of Children and Grandchildren of Holocaust Survivors, 88 of them tell how they inherited the memory and how they hope to pass it on. While many books and studies on children and grandchildren of Holocaust survivors concentrate on psychological aspects, the essayists focus on how their parents' and grandparents’ experiences helped shape their identity and their attitude towards God and Judaism.
read on


New Jersey Jewish News
Book Review: Mussar Yoga: Blending an Ancient Jewish Spiritual Practice with Yoga to Transform Body and Soul

Brotman believes that mussier is “a spiritual bridge” between yoga and Judaism, and that yoga puts mussier into physical practice so that one can work on the midst—Hebrew for positive character traits—in body, mind, and soul.  “I think of mussier yoga as the Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup of spirituality: two spiritual practices that work deliciously together that make life more wholly holy,” she told NJJN in a phone interview.
read on


Los Angeles Jewish Journal
Book Review: The Chutzpah Imperative: Empowering Today's Jews for a Life That Matters

Feinstein wants Jews to have the chutzpah to ask tough questions of themselves, their God, their lives and their Judaism, and to not be satisfied with less than suitable answers. The virtues of this book are many. 
read on


Baltimore Jewish Times
In her 2014 book, Mussar Yoga, local author Edith Brotman posits that when practiced together, mussar and yoga, a spiritual tradition originating in Hinduism and Buddhism, “open a new pathway to developing greater wholeness.”
read on


Reform Judaism Magazine
Interview with Ron Wolfson

Ron Wolfson, cofounder of Synagogue 3000/Next Dor, shares lessons learned from 20 years on the frontlines of synagogue transformation and how to create a healthy congregation. He is the author of numerous books, including The Spirituality of Welcoming: How to Transform Your Congregation into a Sacred Community and Relational Judaism: Using the Power of Relationships to Transform the Jewish Community (both Jewish Lights Publishing).
read on


ELItalks
From Mt. Sinai to Providence, Rhode Island

Watch Stan Mack, author of the comics history The Story of the Jews: A 4,000 Year Adventure, presentation on ELItalks “inspired Jewish ideas.” Part journal entry, part history lesson, part comic adventure, this talk follows Stan Mack’s journey across the world and into the Jewish past.
read on


USA Today
What does being Jewish mean in 2014?—Interview with Rabbi Eric Eisenkramer, author of: Fly-FishingThe Sacred Art: Casting a Fly as a Spiritual Practice.

Today's American Jews have become more acclimated than generations past. Rates of secularism and intermarriage have risen, yet certain rituals, such as the Passover seder, remain ingrained in the life of a Jew.
read on


Oyveybuddhism.com
Interview with Stuart M. Matlins—Jewish Lights founder, editor-in-chief and publisher

Recently, I realized that all my books on Jewish meditation and yoga were from the same source: Jewish Lights Publishing, which seems to be at the vanguard of renewing spirituality in Judaism. I spoke with Stuart M. Matlins, its founder, editor-in-chief and publisher. He opened in 1990, and they have since published over 300 books and sold over 3.5 million books and LifeLights™ pastoral care pamphlets. They provide books and e-books for children, Bar/Bat Mitzvah students, and adults; they have books on Torah, Talmud, ecology, Enneagram, 12 step, meditation, and social justice, to name just a few topics.
read on


Read the Spirit
Blazing Sechel! Debra Darvick welcomes Rabbi Harvey of the Wild West!

Steve Sheinkin’s The Adventures of Rabbi Harvey series would have made even my comic-disdaining mother open the front door wide with welcome. The rabbi’s adventures are built upon classic Jewish texts and teachers: Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, the Baal Shem Tov, Talmudic teachings and Pirke Avot, The Ethics of the Fathers. It’s whimsical; it’s wonderful; its wise and wacky with equal amounts of insight and sight gags.
read on


Sh’ma—A Journal of Jewish Ideas
Toward Intentional Spiritual Communities

“America has become a society that breeds spiritual malaise,” writes Rabbi Sid Schwarz, author of Jewish Megatrends: Charting the Course of the American Jewish Future. “Among the chief causes of this malaise is the erosion of our country’s civic fabric. One need only think back to the weeks following the 9/11 tragedy to recall the overwhelming sense of American common purpose: Residing in the heart of every American, that commonality made us feel as though we were part of a grand social venture that was unique and unparalleled in the history of the world.”
read on


LA Jewish Journal
Book Review: God of Becoming and Relationship: The Dynamic Nature of Process Theology

The opening pages of Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson’s “God of Becoming and Relationship: The Dynamic Nature of Process Theology” begins with a pop-culture reference, too. He describes how, when his family moved into their West Los Angeles home, the dining room had been “painted a sickly green … in the late ‘70s during the high watermark of the aesthetics of ‘The Brady Bunch’ and ‘The Partridge Family.’ ” Only when he removed the paint did he find the richly grained wood paneling that had long been covered up. Here, Rabbi Artson finds an apt analogy to his task as a teacher of religion.
read on


LA Jewish Journal
Book Review: May God Remember: Memory and Memorializing in Judaism—Yizkor

I suppose that Kol Nidrei is still the best-attended service of the Jewish calendar, but surely the memorial service known as Yizkor is a close second. After all, Yizkor—which means “May God remember ...”—is the moment when we are invited to recall in solemn prayer the loved ones who have passed away, a deeply poignant and sometimes painful experience that stands out in sharp relief from the other services during the High Holy Days.
read on


MyCentralJersey.com
Hooked on a feeling: Temple B'Nai Shalom's rabbi hopes readers will reel in lessons from his fly-fishing book

If you ask Rabbi Eric Eisenkramer, we are a society that has forgotten to stop and smell the roses. This belief has led him to co-write “Fly-Fishing — The Sacred Art,” which delves into the spiritual side of the sport while inspiring the reader to do some soul-searching and to appreciate the beauty of nature around us.
read on


Haaretz
Balancing Jewish community needs with repairing the world

Rabbi Sidney Schwarz’s latest book, Jewish Megatrends: Charting the Course of the American Jewish Future (Jewish Lights Publishing, 2013), traces the shift from the twentieth-century Jewish obsession with Jewish continuity for its own sake, to a more universalist outlook. Rather than tending towards tribalism, the Millennials are guided by what Rabbi Sid calls a covenantal identity, meaning a spiritual legacy drawing from the values and ethics embedded in Jewish teachings to better the world at large.
read on


SportFishingWeekly.com
The Path of the Spiritual Fisherman – An interview with the author of Fly Fishing – The Sacred Art

Fishing is far more than catching fish. It is an experience that involves the entire body and engages the whole mind. There is simply no room in the focused fisherman’s consciousness for self doubt. If the fish are there then the successful fisherman will find them and will, more often than not land them.
read on


Florida Heritage Jewish News
Creating a Meaningful Life

Newspaper and magazine articles note how, although most Americans own far more material goods than their ancestors, they’re less content than former generations. The idea that our possessions do not bring happiness is commonly found in religious tracts; those writers suggest the key to contentment is focusing less on the material and more on the spiritual. Rabbi Edwin Goldberg, D.H.L., explores this idea from a Jewish point of view in Saying No and Letting Go: Jewish Wisdom on Making Room for What Matters Most (Jewish Lights Publishing).
read on


Association of Jewish Libraries Reviews
Book Review: On the Chocolate Trail: A  Delicious Adventure Connecting Jews, Religions, History, Travel, Rituals and Recipes to the Magic of Cocoa

This book is like a box of bonbons. You have the sweet nougat filled stories of how Jews were involved in the early trade and production of chocolate. There are lots of bitter chocolate pieces about Jews and the Inquisition and the Holocaust (I didn’t know about the cruelties in the chocolate trade, so it made my dark chocolate taste even more bitter). There is the foil covered gelt of the chocolate industry in Israel, and multi-layered squares about ritual practices using chocolate in several religions. My only wish was that this book was more like a tunnel of fudge cake where you get stuck in all of the molten filling and can’t put the book down.
read on


Association of Jewish Libraries Reviews
Book Review: Davening: A Guide to Meaningful Jewish Prayer

Reb Zalman wants people to understand and appreciate the power and process of prayer. He notes that too many Jews repeat the words by rote without thinking about them. This book explains Jewish prayer and provides a pathway for becoming fully engaged in it.
read on


Spirituality & Practice
Book Review: Amazing Chesed: Living a Grace-Filled Judaism

In this timely volume, Rabbi Shapiro Rami opens the Jewish-Christian door of dialogue a few feet further with his affirmation of grace — chesed — as a major dimension of Judaism.
read on


The Jewish Journal
Getting to Know You...
The key to building community is social interaction, not “social networks”

Ron Wolfson, author of Relational Judaism, speaks about how to transform the model of 20th century Jewish institutions into 21st century relational communities.
read on


The Jewish Exponent
New Book Tries to Rev Up the Ruach

When Rabbi Baruch HaLevi took over as spiritual leader of Congregation Shirat Hayam in Swampscott, Mass., which is just outside Boston, Shabbat attendance was anemic. These days, 300 to 500 people take part in the Conservative congregation’s Shabbat offerings and the place is now considered among the most dynamic in the country.
read on


The Jewish News
Temple Emanuel uses grant to enrich the entire community

A Synagogue Federation Partnership allows a congregation in Virginia Beach to dig into community building through a collective study of Dr. Ron Wolfson’s The Spirituality of Welcoming: How to Transform Your Congregation into a Sacred Community and an invitation to the author to join in the conversation.
read on


 

 ON PRAYER

The Essence of Prayer in Jewish Tradition

By Rabbi Rifat Sonsino 

In English, the verb to pray is a transitive verb, derived from Latin and Old French, meaning “to obtain by begging” or “to entreat.” In Hebrew, the most common word for prayer is tefillah. It comes from the verb lehitpallel, a reflexive form of the root pll, which means “to judge.” Therefore, at the very basic level, to pray really means “to judge oneself.” When Jews engage in prayer, they look into themselves as they try to relate to the Source of all Existence: God.

read on



Prayers of Awe Six-Book Set

$139.99

(Price Includes S/H)

Includes:

This exciting series is designed to enrich the praying experience of everyone—whether experienced worshipers or guests who encounter Jewish prayer for the very first time.

High Holy Days: Inspiration, Information, Contemplation
TWO-BOOK SET

Buy both
Rosh Hashanah Readings and
Yom Kippur Readings
and SAVE 25%!

Your Price: $29.99

“Filled with inspirational readings that are profound, and that will challenge and ignite the mind and heart alike.... Will deepen the High Holy Day experience for every reader.”

Rabbi Joseph Telushkin, author, Jewish Literacy and The Book of Jewish Values

 

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