By Shannon Sarna for The Nosher for myjewishlearning.com
What you need to know about this beloved rendered poultry fat.
You have probably heard the word “schmaltz.” But have you wondered, wait — what is schmaltz? Schmaltz is rendered fat, usually chicken fat. But it can also be duck fat or goose fat. (Learn more about other Jewish food terms here.)
And schmaltz is a much beloved substance by many — it is revered in Eastern European Jewish cooking for its richness, flavor and that it is easy and cheap to make, using every part of the animal. It’s also an alternative to butter, which cannot be used when cooking meat or chicken according to kosher dietary laws.
By Sharon Leder for Jewish Book Council
Sharon Leder is the author of the recently published novel The Fix: A Father's Secrets, A Daughter's Search. She will be blogging here all week for the Jewish Book Council's Visiting Scribe series.
I had the privilege in 2008 of teaching a seminar at the Wellfleet Library on Cape Cod on the father-daughter relationship in Jewish literature. The American Library Association sponsored the program, “A Mind of Her Own: Fathers and Daughters in a Changing World.” My teaching American Pastoral by Philip Roth, Tevye the Dairyman by Sholem Aleichem, Bread Givers by Anzia Yezierska, O My America! by Johanna Kaplan, and Bee Season by Myla Goldberg helped me find my own character, Sara Katz, eight years later. And in May 2017, my revised novel, The Fix: A Father’s Secrets, A Daughter’s Search was published by KiCam Projects.
BY BEN HARRIS for myjewishlearning.com
Taking one's life is officially a violation of Jewish law, but many contemporary rabbis recognize that most suicides result from struggles with mental illness.
The suicide of a loved one is among the most challenging tragedies a person can face. In addition to the sudden loss, mourners often grapple with feelings of anger and guilt toward the deceased. In addition, there remains a stigma attached to suicide in many parts of the Jewish community born of the fact that Jewish tradition is deeply opposed to the taking of one’s own life in nearly all cases.
Is suicide against Jewish law?
While there is no explicit biblical prohibition on suicide, later rabbinic authorities derived a prohibition from the verse in Genesis 9:5, “And surely your blood of your lives, will I require.” Rashi and other early rabbinic authorities understood the verse as a prohibition against taking one’s own life. Contemporary rulings from all three major religious streams have upheld the view that suicide is fundamentally incompatible with Jewish law and values.
BY MJL STAFF
Find out when Shabbat starts.
The lighting of candles as sunset approaches on Friday is the traditional sign of the onset of Shabbat. After lighting the candles, it is customary to cover the eyes and recite a blessing. The Shabbat candle-lighting blessing can be found here, as can other key Shabbat blessings.
By Michael Twitty for The Forward
I am going back to the mountaintop.
In three weeks, I will return to Charlottesville, Virginia. It is not because it became last Saturday the site of an American pogrom.
Last weekend dozens of people were injured during violence sparked by the Unite the Right rally and counter protests. Two law enforcement officers were killed in a helicopter crash, a 20-year-old young African-American man was beaten bloody by a mob and one woman, Heather Heyer, was run over by a car and killed. Over two days, chants of “Blood and Soil!,” “Race Traitors,” “F—k You Fa—ots” and “Jews Will Not Replace Us” pierced the air.
By Cnaan Liphshiz for JTA
Nostalgia for Jews is a well-documented phenomenon in Eastern Europe, with cultural and even substantial commercial aspects.
In Ukraine, so-called Jewish-themed restaurants with pork-heavy menus compete for tourists, while figurines of Jews are sold at markets as good luck charms. In Poland, graffiti reading “I miss you, Jew” have become a common sight.
Beyond the kitsch, Jewish cultural festivals draw large non-Jewish audiences in Krakow, Warsaw and Budapest.
Some credit this trend to a feeling of loss over the near annihilation of once-vibrant Jewish communities. Others trace it a desire to reconnect with the pre-Soviet past.
BY MJL STAFF
Jewish Parent/Child Relationships
Judaism commands us to respect our mothers and fathers — and provide for our children.
As with other human relationships, Jewish parents and their children (both adult and minor) are, in traditional Judaism, bound to each other by a series of commanded responsibilities and sacred practices. Most societies emphasize reverence for parents; post-biblical Judaism appears to have gone further than its contemporaries in mandating that parents provide for their children with very specific preparations for the future. Furthermore, Judaism sees parents and offspring as bound to each other not only for practical or humanistic reasons, but also as a way of honoring God.
By Lin Arison & Diana C. Stoll/The Desert and the Cities Sing for Israel21c
At Rish Lakish, olive picking is still done by hand unlike at most commercial olive groves.
There are countless stories in Israel of small-scale businesses that cobble together several undertakings in order to succeed. The Rish Lakish olive oil press, in the village of Zippori in the Lower Galilee, is one of these.
At the head of this family-owned business are Micha and Rachelle Noymeir, but their six children played a formative role in the establishment of their olive oil production. Their headquarters, a lovely straw-bale structure, was built by the Noymeir sons.
Recently, bimbam's founder, Sarah Lefton, spent a week at the Kenyon Institute teaching a Writing for Video class to clergy in a multi-denominational setting. Watch her vlog below with Rev. Kyle Oliver, an Episcopal Priest. Last month, our Animation Director Jeremy presented about how BimBam videos demystify Jewish mourning rituals at the Chevrah Kadisha and Jewish Cemetery Conference in the San Francisco Bay Area.
By Abigail Klein Leichman for Israel21c
Made in Israel and launched in French Guyana, Venus will enable unprecedented imaging of the health of the Earth’s environment.
Israel’s first satellite to study the environment was launched shortly before dawn yesterday (August 2) from the European Space Center at Kourou, French Guiana.
An hour and a half later, the satellite Venus (short for Vegetation and Environment Monitoring on a New Micro Satellite) successfully separated from the launcher and entered its orbit. At 10:30, the satellite passed over Israel and transmitted its first surveillance message.
BY AVISHAY ARTSY for Jewniverse
It’s rare that vacation photos elicit more than a yawn, and it’s certainly unusual to find anything as riveting as the 16mm reel Glenn Kurtz uncovered while sifting through a cardboard box at his parents’ house in Florida.
His grandfather’s home-movie footage included three minutes of Kodachrome color film shot in 1938 during a visit to the small Polish town of Nasielsk. Fewer than 100 of the town’s 3,000 inhabitants survived the Holocaust, and David Kurtz, a Jewish tourist from New York, captured the only surviving moving images of the town. Today, December 3, marks the 75th anniversary of the deportation of Nasielsk’s Jewish population.
Deuteronomy 16:18 - 21:9
BY RABBI MATTHEW BERKOWITZ. A Wexner Fellow ordained in 1999 by the Jewish Theological Seminary
Never Return to Egypt
Resisting the temptation to return, geographically or psychologically, to the site of our bondage.
Several years ago, a book review in the New York Times caught my attention. Janet Maslin, reviewing The Known World by Edward Jones wrote: “Mr. Jones explores the unsettling, contradiction-prone world of a Virginia slaveholder who happens to be black.”
Maslin observed that such situations actually existed in the Antebellum South. A black slaveholder — quite a jarring concept for our rational minds! Nevertheless, such situational opposites are sadly not uncommon throughout history. Indeed, what actually caught my eye in this review was a vignette that the reviewer cited. Augustus, a former slave himself, confronts his son, Henry, who is a black slave-owner: “Augustus, who became free at the age of 22, is aghast to find his son . . . owning slaves. ‘Don’t go back to Egypt after God done took you outa there,’ Augustus warns.”
One could hardly imagine a more powerful philosophical and historical statement; and it is this notion of not returning to Egypt that is rooted in this week’s portion, Parashat Shoftim.
By Liel Leibovitz for Tablet Magazine
With Sarahah, young adults can trade secrets anonymously. Can peace be far behind?
It’s 2017, and Israeli teens are into whatever their peers in New York or London or Paris or anywhere else in the world find cool. This summer, it’s Sarahah, an anonymous gossip app you had probably not heard of if you’re older than 23 and to which you’re utterly addicted if you’re younger. But there’s something remarkable about Tel Avivi teens idling away their afternoons sending each other incognito messages, often racy in nature: Sarahah was developed in Saudi Arabia.
Its creator, Zain al-Abidin Tawfiq, had originally intended for his invention to allow employees to share feedback with their bosses without repercussion, no easy task in a strictly hierarchical society like his. But the internet being what it is, teens soon appropriated the app and turned it into a platform for expressing their best and their worst emotions, with little in between. “The messages are usually either really nice or really mean,” one American adolescent Sarahah addict told New York Magazine.
By Inbal Arieli for Israel21c
From the moment they can raise their heads, we encourage our sons and daughters to explore the world around them without fear or constraint.
People ask me all the time: “What makes Israel such a cradle of innovation?” or “Why are Israelis constantly busy with new initiatives?”
I have given these questions a lot of thought and quite frankly, I think it starts from the cradle.
Granted, I’m an Israeli mother, so perhaps I am a bit biased, but I think the answer to why Israel is such a laboratory of innovation and entrepreneurship begins with the way modern Israelis raise their children.
Spain’s leading linguistic authority will create an academy in Israel dedicated to the study and preservation of the Ladino language.
The institution will be the 24th branch of the Spanish Royal Academy, the Guardian reported Tuesday.
Dario Villanueva, director of the Spanish Royal Academy, or RAE, said Ladino is “an extraordinarily important cultural and historical phenomenon” that deserved its own academy.
This article has been reprinted with permission from InterfaithFamily
In 2017, the Jewish New Year, Rosh HaShanah, begins on Wednesday evening, September 20th and Yom Kippur, the “Day of Atonement,” begins on Friday evening, September 29th. Are you interested in learning more about how to prepare for and celebrate these High Holidays in your interfaith family? Then this three-session, once a week email series, which has been created by the rabbis from our IFF/Your Communities across the country, is for you! You will receive emails on three consecutive Thursdays (August 31 and September 7 and 14) that will help you and your family to reflect on major themes of the holidays; learn about some of the holiday liturgy; discover ways to make the holidays meaningful for you and your family; and give you questions to discuss with your partner and children.
This series starts on August 31st. REGISTRATION IS STILL OPEN - SIGN UP BY CLICKING HERE
By Abigail Klein Leichman for Israel21c
Israeli human-on-a-chip platform has the unique ability to predict risk of toxicity in pharma and cosmetic product candidates without animal testing.
After spending an average of $2.5 billion to develop a single new drug, sometimes pharma companies have to pull it from the market due to a bad outcome that was not detected in clinical studies.
That’s what happened in 2000, when a promising Type 2 diabetes drug called troglitazone led to idiosyncratic (unexplained) liver damage in one of every 60,000 users.
The troglitazone mystery wasn’t solved until March 2016, when a novel “liver-on-a-chip” platform developed by Hebrew University of Jerusalem Prof. Yaakov Nahmias revealed what no animal or human tests could: even low concentrations of this drug caused liver stress before any damage could be seen.
Oliver Stern for The Forward
I was born deaf, but after receiving cochlear implants and undergoing 20 surgeries, I was able to recover my hearing. As I grew up, I realized other children with disabilities were not as fortunate as I am. In response, I launched Our Abilities, which has educated over 900 students at North Beach Elementary about issues concerning disability advocacy.
Living with a disability is hard. Children especially face a series of challenges every day that make living a normal life a near impossibility. Everything ranging from lacking the resources to adequately address their disability to not being socially accepted by their peers, forever makes disabled children feel inadequate, uncomfortable with themselves, and powerless to pursue their dreams.
You've heard it before (and maybe you've even said it), "Shabbat is so restrictive. All you can do is go to synagogue." And reinforcing that perception, a Google search looking for activities allowed on Shabbat only returns pages and pages of things you can't do on Shabbat. For someone new to Shabbat, you're left wading through all the prohibitions and must figure out what's left when you rule everything else out.
I'm here to assure you that Shabbat is fun, peaceful, and can be filled with many activities! But as many people say, you can't understand the peace of Shabbat until you do it.
Here is a list of ideas to get you thinking about the possibilities of Shabbat! Please feel free to add more Shabbat-friendly activities in the comments section! (After all, I'm a pretty boring person, so I'm sure I don't know the full breadth of possibility!)
Some 200 Jewish leaders and institutions from North America urged the Israeli government to end discrimination against same-sex couples who want to adopt children.
The call came in a letter to the government coordinated by A Wider Bridge, a San Francisco-based organization that focuses on ties between U.S. and Israeli LGBTQ communities. Signatories included Hillel International, leaders of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, the Union of Reform Judaism, prominent Jewish LGBT leaders and over 60 U.S. rabbis.
What's Happening at DHJC
Daily Morning Minyan
Monday and Thursday, 6:45am
Tuesday, Wednesday and Friday, 7am
Daily Evening Minyan
Sunday to Thursday, 8pm
Mincha, Maariv and Havdalah
Weekly at Sundown
(weekly calendar for exact times)
Please check our calendar for all our events.
Early Childhood Center, Religious School & Youth Group & J-Team dates have been posted.
Rabbi's Summer Class Schedule 2017
DHJC Collegiate Outreach
DHJC would love to keep in touch with your college student while they are away at school. Sisterhood would like to include your college student in our Collegiate Outreach Program. As a member of DHJC, your undergraduate college student(s) are entitled to receive various mailings and good wishes, all geared to the Jewish lifestyle and calendar.
Partners in Caring
The PIC Program provides Counseling, Education, Case Management and Volunteer Coordination through the gateways of our synagogue partners
Dix Hills Jewish Center
Huntington Jewish Center
North Shore Jewish Center
Michele Herman, LMSW
PIC Coordinator 631-462-9800x239
Welcome to the Dix Hills Jewish Center
Welcome to the Dix Hills Jewish Center, a Conservative Congregation, celebrating 50 years as a beacon of dynamic Judaism in Dix Hills. We are a traditional egalitarian synagogue committed to the reality that all Jews are full partners in the beauty of Jewish life and that all Jews are given an equal role in all rituals. The Dix Hills Jewish Center is an engaging, vibrant congregation. We are excited about the growth in our synagogue, and the wonderful growth of the Jewish community of Dix Hills, Commack and the neighboring communities. We are a community committed to learning, to supporting each other, and to being a warm and welcoming place for all who participate. Welcome to the Dix Hills Jewish Center.
Service & Minyan times located at the bottom of the page.
If you are interested in attending any of our programs please check the Calendar in Upcoming Events. Children's programming is also available.
In Case Of........
For joyous occassions in your life, please share your naches with the Rabbi. Inform the Rabbi about births, engagements, weddings and other noteworthy moments in the life of your family. The Rabbi will arrange for baby namings, provide information regarding a mohel ( for infant boys), coordinate a pidyon ha-ben (the redemption ceremony for firstborn males), schedule an aufruf (to celebrate a forthcoming marriage), weddings and bring the richness of Jewish traditions and mitzvoth into your simcha(email rabbi or call 631-499-6644).
In case of illness and/or hospitalization, please notify the Rabbi at 631-499-6644 (24/6 - on Shabbat, see below for further emergency instructions)
Even before making funeral arrangements notify Rabbi Buechler at the synagogue office at 631-499-6644 (after office hours press #3 for the emergency numbers). Rabbi Buechler will assist and guide you in making the appropriate arrangements for the funeral. In the event that you cannot reach the Rabbi, contact the Jewish funeral home and begin to make your arrangements. PLEASE, if Rabbi Buechler is going to officiate at the funeral, do not finalize the funeral time until the Rabbi has contacted you. At most this will be a few hours. In the event that Rabbi Buechler is on vacation, Cantor Hevenstone is available and other local Conservative Rabbis are on call. Their names can be obtained by calling the synagogue office, an officer of the synagogue or the Ritual Chairman. It is also appropriate to contact Rabbi Buechler whenever tragedy or trauma occurs. On Shabbat and Yomtov the Rabbi does not use the telephone. Therefore, you can convey information to him on these days at the synagogue during scheduled service times, by calling him immediately after Shabbat or Yomtov or by going to his residence.
Social Action Committee
Bikur Cholim & Home Visits
Do you have a relative or friend in our congregation who would benefit from a personal home visit? We are here for you! Members of our DHJC Social Action Committee - Tender Loving Congregants -- will happily come to visit and chat. BIKUR CHOLIM -- we visit our friends and relatives in Gurwin. Become a volunteer. Learn how.
High School students -- learn how to be a volunteer at Gurwin! There are many ways to volunteer.
Please contact us [email protected]
An Aliyah for YOU
Whether you are 20 or 120, or anything in between, we would like to honor you on the anniversary of your bar or bat mitzvah. Please send the date of your bar/bat mitzvah or the name of your parsha to Lee Grebstein [email protected]
New Newsletter is here!!