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We are a community of Hebrew Seminary faculty, staff, rabbinical students, lifelong learners, Kabbalists, scholars, spiritual seekers and kind supporters.

The mission of Hebrew Seminary is to train rabbis and Jewish educators to serve all Jewish communities, including the deaf community. Hebrew Seminary has been an inclusive and egalitarian community for the study and practice of Judaism since our founding in 1992.

We hope […]

By |2021-11-09T13:46:26-06:00January 1, 2021|Hebrew Seminary Blog|0 Comments

Going Nowhere, With Love: Commentary on Parashat Vayyelekh 5783

Going Nowhere, With Love: Commentary on Parashat Vayyelekh 5783
By Rabbi Jonah Rank, President and Rosh Yeshivah of Hebrew Seminary

One of my favorite contemporary Hebrew expressions to hear on the phone is “אֲנִי כְּבָר בָּא” (ani k’var ba), which means literally “I am already coming.” I have heard it used by Israelis who are in a car and actually en route to their next meetup, […]

By |2022-10-02T19:45:38-05:00September 30, 2022|Torah, Torah and Talmud, Weekly Torah Portions|0 Comments

The Return of the Horn: Commentary for Rosh HaShanah 5783

The Return of the Horn: Commentary for Rosh HaShanah 5783
By: Rabbi Jonah Rank, Hebrew Seminary President & Rosh Yeshivah

Whether or not we will feel ready, we will soon proclaim the new Jewish year with the blast of a ram’s horn[1]—and we are supposed to feel sheepish.

Se’adiah Ga’on, who led the Jews of Sura (in modern-day Iraq) from 928 until his death in […]

By |2022-09-22T18:58:31-05:00September 22, 2022|Uncategorized|0 Comments

Parashat Ki Tavo

Remember Who You Come From: Commentary on Parashat Ki Tavo 5782

By Ben Abrams, Rabbinical Student at Hebrew Seminary

The Israelites are reminded of their wandering, humble past when they are instructed to recite the formula אֲרַמִּי֙ אֹבֵ֣ד אָבִ֔י (Arami oved avi, “My father was a wandering Aramean”),[1] words that today are a critical part of the Haggadah we read on Passover. The […]

By |2022-09-15T15:28:28-05:00September 15, 2022|Torah, Weekly Torah Portions|0 Comments

Parashat Shofetim

Magic and Mystery in the Clouds Down Here: Commentary on Parashat Shofetim 5782
By Rabbi Jonah Rank, President and Rosh Yeshivah of Hebrew Seminary

One week ago today, I prepared myself for Shabbat by putting on a nice button-down shirt and shrouding myself in mystery.

To paint the picture a bit more clearly, I should backtrack.

Like all rabbis, I am both an heir to and a messenger […]

By |2022-09-03T21:33:48-05:00September 2, 2022|Uncategorized, Weekly Torah Portions|0 Comments

Parashat Re’eh

How We Look at Things: Commentary on Parashat Re’eh 5782
By Rabbi Dena Bodian, Hebrew Seminary alum, ordained 2010; College Chaplain and Campus Rabbi at Wellesley College

This week’s parashah starts seemingly with a command: רְאֵה (Re’eh, “See”) (Deuteronomy 11:26). Just as earlier in the Book of Deuteronomy, we encountered the first […]

By |2022-08-26T11:50:19-05:00August 26, 2022|Uncategorized, Weekly Torah Portions|0 Comments

Parashat Ekev

Comfort! A Commentary on Parashat Ekev 5782
By Rabbi Dr. Laurence Edwards, Ph.D., Professor of Bible, Jewish Thought, Jewish History

In the weeks that follow Tish’ah Be’Av (which was observed this year on August 7) there is a sense in which we see ourselves as mourners. We have recited the lamentations over the destruction of Jerusalem – traditionally done sitting on the floor or […]

By |2022-08-17T12:00:54-05:00August 17, 2022|Hebrew Seminary Blog|1 Comment

Parashat Va’etchannan

Small Actions, Great Principles: Commentary on Parashat Va’etchannan
By Rabbi Daniel Vaisrub, Hebrew Seminary Professor of Talmud

Sometimes, you can learn great principles from small actions. A great example of this occurs in this week’s Torah reading, Va’etchannan.

Deuteronomy 4:41-43 tells us:
אָ֣ז יַבְדִּ֤יל מֹשֶׁה֙ שָׁלֹ֣שׁ עָרִ֔ים בְּעֵ֖בֶר הַיַּרְדֵּ֑ן מִזְרְחָ֖ה שָֽׁמֶשׁ׃ לָנֻ֨ס שָׁ֜מָּה רוֹצֵ֗חַ אֲשֶׁ֨ר יִרְצַ֤ח אֶת־רֵעֵ֙הוּ֙ בִּבְלִי־דַ֔עַת […]

By |2022-08-11T12:26:07-05:00August 11, 2022|Hebrew Seminary Blog, Torah|0 Comments

A Planet of Self-Sabotage or Self-Love? A Tish’ah Be’Av Commentary

A Planet of Self-Sabotage or Self-Love? A Tish’ah Be’Av Commentary
By Rabbi Jonah Rank,  Hebrew Seminary President & Rosh Yeshivah

Before he became an unlikely household name in the 1960s, when he removed the high brow of Amilcare Ponchielli’s ballet Dance of the Hours by borrowing the composer’s tune for “Hello Muddah, Hello Faddah (A Letter From Camp),” Allan Sherman had been a struggling writer. The […]

By |2022-08-11T12:27:06-05:00August 5, 2022|Hebrew Seminary Blog|1 Comment

Parashiyyot Mattot-Mas’ei

Words That Build and Break Worlds: Parashiyyot Mattot-Mas’ei
By: Rabbi Jonah Rank, Hebrew Seminary President & Rosh Yeshivah

 

Streets are filled with broken hearts
Broken words never meant to be spoken
Everything’s broken
-Bob Dylan, “Everything Is Broken”[1]

Our trust breaks down when someone we admire or rely on says one thing and does another. Whether the word that never came to be began with a partner, a […]

By |2022-08-11T12:27:35-05:00July 29, 2022|Hebrew Seminary Blog|0 Comments

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