Browsing Tag



The Israeli Chutzpah Behind a Coconut Water Empire

By On November 1, 2016

Q: What do Madonna and a mensch named Ira have in common? A: Chutzpah and coconuts. In 2003, an Israeli-born New Yorker named Ira Liran and his childhood best friend, Michael Kirban,… Read More


The Jewish Tradition of Circling the Dead

By On October 21, 2016

  On Simchat Torah, Jewish communities across the world will take to the streets and the synagogue social halls to dance circles around the Torah for the holiday. But long before this… Read More


Let This Music Video Inspire Your Repentance

By On October 1, 2015

Jewish thought is full of paradoxes. A complicated philosophy is supposed to help us achieve simple faith. We want to get close to the Infinite, but we do it by following tons… Read More

A Sephardic Prayer Service for Insomniacs

A Sephardic Prayer Service for Insomniacs

By On June 24, 2015

Can’t sleep? Instead of shuffling to the freezer or watching this live walrus cam, you could be getting a jump start on your prayers. That is, if you happen to live near… Read More

Mindblowing Israeli Hip-Hop that Explodes the Hebrew Alphabet

Meet Victoria Hanna, The Israeli Hip-Hop Artist Who’ll Blow Your Mind

By On February 23, 2015

  There’s a video that’s been making the Internet rounds this past week of Israeli vocal artist Victoria Hanna’s strange and captivating new song. In the video for “Aleph-bet (Hosha’ana)”, she’s dressed… Read More

The Path of Names

Kabbalah, Supernatural Bug Juice, and Other Camp Delights

By On February 24, 2014

Ah, Jewish summer camp memories: Bunk raids, incessant singing, daddy longlegs crawling everywhere, and of course mystical, supernatural adventures. Maybe not that last one, unless you’re the protagonist in Ari Goelman’s debut novel, The Path of… Read More


The Other Kabbalah-Loving L.A. Musician

By On November 11, 2013

LA-based singer-songwriter Mikey Pauker’s inspirations come from across the map. From contemporary pop music to Jewish liturgy, hasidut, kabbalah, and his own Jewish experiences, Pauker skillfully combines upbeat folk songs with classical Jewish texts. Check out,… Read More


Alef Beit Stretch

By On February 4, 2013

Considering how much Jews love yoga, kabbalah, and Jewish-Eastern hybrids (Soy Vay teriyaki sauce, anyone?), it was only a matter of time until a Jewish yoga emerged. And then re-emerged, in the form of Alef… Read More


A Kabbalistic Spell Book

By On August 16, 2012

Chaim Vital (1543-1620) was one of the most prominent students of the famed kabbalist Rabbi Isaac Luria. Vital was Luria’s chronicler, recording Luria’s mystical insights, spreading Luria’s teachings, and expanding on them. Vital also wrote… Read More


Electric Golem

By On February 16, 2012

The 1920 German silent film The Golem is a classic of early cinema–dark, tortured, dated, and silly, but also genuinely creepy at points. The film is based on an ancient Jewish folktale in which a medieval rabbi molds… Read More


Praying in the Fields

By On December 29, 2011

In the sixteenth century, kabbalists living in Safed developed an elaborate ritual for welcoming the Sabbath. Dressed in white garments, they would leave the city limits and go into the fields, singing psalms and the mystical song “Lekhah Dodi.” Today we… Read More


Sway While You Pray

By On May 1, 2011

In school, many of us were reprimanded: “Sit still and pay attention!” In Judaism, however, the opposite concept exists. Shuckeling, the Yiddish term for swaying during prayer and Torah study, has been a Jewish tradition… Read More