Torah class tonight - come and exercise your freedom of religion!
at 7:30pm at 132 Castillion Terrace, Santa Cruz 9506, with the fabulous chapter six!
Even if you missed earlier classes, now is the perfect time to jump in.
Rabbi Yisroel Gordon
Unlike other traditions such as Halloween, which has pagan roots, and Christmas, which celebrates the birth of Christianity’s founder, Thanksgiving has grown out of a motivation to thank G-d for the good people have gained in
While Thanksgiving isn’t forbidden, should Jews still embrace it, or even celebrate it? From my own perspective, I can only say that I don’t celebrate it, nor do I think Jews should or even need to. One reason is that thanking G-d is a daily, some would even say constant, affair in Judaism. The first words we utter in the morning are “Mode ani lefahnechah,” literally “I give thanks before you,” an act of thanking G-d that is performed even before we get out of bed. The liturgy is full of praises of thanks and of acknowledgements that we cannot live without G-d’s loving help. An excellent example of this is the "Asher Yatzer" blessing said after using the bathroom. Even in such a mundane situation, we acknowledge what G-d does for us. We should focus our energies on daily thanksgiving, not just being thankful one day a year.
A second reason grows out of practical considerations. Thanksgiving Day always falls out on a Thursday, a day where much of the cooking for Shabbos begins. To stage a large meal or gathering on Thursday takes away from Shabbos, both in terms of prep time and in terms of quality. Shabbos is meant to be the height of the week, and a voluntary event of similar proportions can make Shabbos seem less special. In fact, I try to use the extra time I have off during this season to invest even more time on Shabbos, for example by making extra dishes or going more in-depth with the Parsha. Shabbos is actually a gift from G-d to the Jews, and to truly value, appreciate, and invest time in a gift one has received, is probably one of the highest forms of thanksgiving one can show.
What is your view? Comments welcome!
What is your view? Comments welcome!
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Hi! If you already know about this, pass it on to others. If you don't know about this, read on...
Santa Cruz Hillel is conducting an on-line survey to get feedback from Jewish students about our programs. The survey takes less than 10 minutes to fill out. Once we have complete surveys from 100 students who have attended at least one Hillel event, we will do a raffle for a brand new iPod Nano! Everyone who fills out the survey has a 1% chance of winning! We have received about 30 completed so far. So, fill out the survey and send this e-mail on to others. You can help your chance of winning by giving others a chance to win.
The survey can be found through our website: SantaCruzHillel.org
You can also go there directly by clicking here.
If you are involved with a student group (Sigma, AEPi, Leviathan, SCIAC, 12 Tribes co-op, etc.) please make sure that everyone in the group has a chance to help you win a free iPod and also help your Hillel.
Thanks and Shabbat Shalom,
I just wanted to send you a gentle reminder that the opening class of "You Be the Judge" is tonight at the UCSC Inn.It's not too late to join.Even if you haven't yet registered, it's not too late; you can still participate.
The fee for the full series is $125 (or $225 for couples) but you can try out the first class before committing.
(Lawyers can receive nine MCLE credit hours and, conveniently, the UCSC Inn is also a voting location!)
I do ask that you please let me know that you'll be coming as we need to print student handbooks and let the hotel know how many people to set up for. You can reach me at 454-0101 ext.1.
You can see more information about the course at the Jewish Learning Institute website:
If you can't make it to this series, don't worry, this is only the first of three courses this year. The next course is entitled The Kaballah of Character and the spring course is Flashbacks in Jewish History.
With the variety of topics, there's sure to be something for everyone.
Looking forward to seeing you either at this or any of the courses and wishing you all the very best, always.
Rabbi Yochanan FriedmanChabad by the Sea
Late Sunday evening, a surprise decision by Attorney-General Menahem Mazuz to deny police requests to suspend the Jerusalem Gay Pride March planned for Friday set off urgent moves to reach a possible compromise.I am going to omit my own opinion of the situation, but please enjoy my vlog as an embedded observer on the front lines.
Mazuz's decision quickly reverberated across Jerusalem's haredi neighborhoods, as residents of Mea She'arim, Geula and Romema took to the streets, blocking Rehov Sarei Yisrael and Kikar Shabbat with burning dumpsters and tires.
On Sarei Yisrael, people in the crowd threw rocks at police officers, and five protesters were detained for questioning. A failed attempt was made at blocking Rehov Tzefania and the major artery and frequent flashpoint Rehov Bar-Ilan, and similar protests were also held in Bnei Brak.
It was this effect - and worse - that police had feared when they held a situation assessment Sunday morning, at which the country's top law-enforcement officials decided that the risk to human life was too high to allow the parade to be held.