High Holiday Companion
TABLE OF CONTENTS
by Rabbi Simcha Zissel Ziv and Geoffrey Claussen
In the 1860s, Rabbi Simcha Zissel Ziv tried to found a new kind of yeshiva in which students would devote significant time to thinking about their moral lives.
by Allan Nadler
Old World Ashkenazi cantorial art—khazones—is making a comeback, with a surprising little boost from a Leonard Cohen single (yes, that Leonard Cohen).
In this season of repentance, it is not only the laws of the rabbis, but their stories as well, that teach us how—and how not—to forgive.
And should we add a confession on Yom Kippur “for the sin of opening browser windows of distraction”? On Aristotle’s akrasia and Maimonides’s teshuvah.
by Noah Millman
How Shakespeare helps us think about the akedah, and vice versa.
by Shari Saiman
The reimagining of an ancient architectural ritual.
by Jacob ben Isaac Ashkenazi & Morris M. Faierstein
There was once a custom for a pregnant woman to bite off the tip of the etrog at the end of Sukkot. This excerpt includes the text of a Yiddish prayer, or tkhine, that the pregnant woman is instructed to recite based on an interpretation of Genesis 3:6.
The tradition to stay up all night studying on Shavuot is far more well known than the tradition to do so on Hoshana Rabbah. Neither would have been possible without Kabbalah and caffeine.
by Adam Kirsch
The scroll, which was originally a secular technology, became closely associated with Judaism at a time when Christians were adopting the codex for their holy books.
The Torah reading cycle provides the structure not just for the Jewish year but also for countless volumes of commentary on the biblical text.
Complicated Community: A Conversation with a Jewish Chavista
What happens to a Jewish supporter of Hugo Chavez when the revolution descends into chaos?
Let My People Go
Many of the heroes of the Soviet Jewry movement have been unsung, until now.
Man of Letters
Adam Kirsch’s judicious selection of Lionel Trilling’s letters throws instructive light on both Trilling’s life and American intellectual culture from the 1920s to the 1970s.
The notion of zera kodesh, “holy seed,” appears only twice in the Bible, both times in reference to the people of Israel as a whole. For Hasidim, however, it has a more restricted meaning.