The Jew and Interfaith Marriage

Judaism traditionally does not allow interfaith marriages. The Jewish Bible or the Torah says that the children of interfaith marriages would be lost to Judaism. History has shown that this passage holds truth well. It has been found that only about a third of interfaith marriage people raise their children in the Jewish faith, in spite of efforts in the Conservative and Reform communities to embrace interfaith couples.

Chelsea-and-Marks-wedding_2-thumb-350x280-74557This could be because Jews who marry gentiles do not embrace their religion deeply enough prior to their marriage. Those deeply committed to their faith would not historically marry someone who does not share that commitment. Statistics show that Jews in interfaith marriages are not as likely to be involved in activities of the Jewish community as those who are married to other Jews. These statistics are a concern for the Jewish community. The rate of intermarriage has increased significantly during the 1980s and l990s, however, it seems to have slowed down since.

The liberal groups of Judaism have attempted to embrace intermarried couples in hopes of slowing the exit of members of the Jewish community. It is questionable as to whether or not this is helping since the statistics show that intermarried couples are less likely to have involvement in the Jewish traditions or to raise their children in the Jewish faith & traditions.

People who are considering marrying out of their faith or are dating out of their faith dismiss objections as being prejudice, but there are important matters to consider. If you are the Jewish partner, why are you dating a non-Jew instead of seeking out a Jewish partner? You will be given a list of reasons why from a female Jewish prospective since they have seen in their households how men may be Mother’s boys, macho like, cheap, etc. Jewish men will say Jewish women are money hungry, plain, not sexy, perhaps even frigid. It seems non- Jews are more interested in marrying a Jew than a Jew marrying a Jew since many gentiles register every day on dating sites specifically for those seeking a Jewish mate. In the end, you have to decide what is best for you in regards to committing to a relationship outside your faith.

Tu B’Av, the Jewish Valentine’s Day

Tu B’Av (the fifteenth of the month Av) is a small Jewish holiday.0 R

In modern-day Israel, it is celebrated as a vacation of love , much like Valentine’s Day. It has been claimed to be a “fantastic day for weddings”.

Historic relevance based on the Mishna, Tu B’Av was a jubilant holiday in the days of the Temple in Jerusalem, marking the start of the grape produce. Yom Kippur noted completion of the grape harvest. On both days, the single ladies of Jerusalem dressed in white garments, and headed out to dance in the wineries.  That exact same area in the Talmud mentions that there were no holy days as happy for the Jews as Tu B’Av and Yom Kippur.  The holiday commemorated the wood-offering added the Holy Place (see Nehemiah 10:35). Josephus describes it as the Feast of Xylophory (“Wood-bearing”).

Different factors for commemorating on Tu B’Av are pointed out by the Talmud and Talmudic commentators:

While the Jews strayed in the desert for forty years, female orphans without brothers might only wed within their tribe, to stop their father’s inherited land in the Land of Israel from passing on to various other people. On the fifteenth of Av of the fortieth year, this restriction was lifted. (See Daughters of Zelophehad.).
That same year, the last of the generation of the sin of the spies, which had actually been restricted to enter the Promised Land, discovered that they were not predestined to pass away. For forty years, every Tisha B’av evening, the Jews made tombs on their own where they rested on Tisha B’Av; every year a proportion of them passed away. In the 40th year, the fifteen thousand who had actually remained from the very first generation went to sleep in the graves and also woke up the next day to their surprise. Assuming they made a mistake with the date, they did this till they got to Tu B’Av. Just after that did they understand they were permitted to live.

The People of Benjamin were permitted to intermarry with the various other people after the occurrence of the Concubine of Gibeah (see Juries chapters 19-21).
Cutting of the timber for the primary altar in the Holy place was completed for the year.

The nights, generally the suitable time for Torah study, are lengthened once more after the summer season solstice, allowing even more study.

The Roman occupiers allowed funerals of the targets of the massacre at Bethar during bench Kochba rebellion. Incredibly, the bodies had not broken down, in spite of direct exposure to the components for over a year.

Can Jews Eat Meat for Breakfast?

Goldbergs-reuben-smallMany people living in Eretz Yisrael, when making a bris, will make certain that the bris seudah is fleishig (includes meat). Even though the very thought about this to numerous American expatriates, to whom a bris means bagels, is as international as consuming burritos for the Shabbos Seudah, right here in Israel, it’s almost de riguer. Not just that, it’s actually much cheaper making a full fleishig bris seudah than to make a milk-like bagel and lox one, due to the legislation of supply and need.

The concern is: “Why would certainly this be so? Simple economics need to confirm the other. Also, just what’s incorrect with bagels and lox? Eating fleishig at a bris is downright un-American!!”.

The answer is actually really intriguing, yet to properly understand it we need to find out some halachos of the 9 days. The Shulchan Aruch1 specifies that during the week where Tisha B’Av befalls (shavua shechal bo), the minhag is to avoid eating any type of type of meat. This is the viewpoint of the Shulchan Aruch, and basic Sefardi minhag afters. The Rema2, however, keeps that all the prohibitions start from Rosh Chodosh Av, and Ashkenazi custom afters this, hence the name “The 9 Days– from Rosh Chodesh Av until after the fast of Tisha B’av”. This suggests that Ashkenazi custom is to abstain from eating meat items throughout the whole 9 day period.

Nevertheless, there are numerous exemptions to this restriction: Shabbos is not included, as the mitzvah of Oneg Shabbos bypasses this restriction. Also, Seudas Mitzvah, even throughout the week, will additionally take priority over it, and meat may be served. This is where it can get fascinating. The examples of a Seudas Mitzvah detailed by the Rema consists of a party on ending a Tractate of Talmud, a Pidyon HaBen, a betrothal seudah, and also … a bris milah!

This means that the seudah at a bris milah is thought about a seudas mitzvah, and also is of such significance that those commemorating could even consume meat, and not just throughout the 9 days, yet also on the real week of Tisha B’Av !! This reveals that the correct minhag is to consume fleishig at a bris seuda, because of its significance and standing as a seudas mitzvah! If a standard bris has such high quality, why ought to one wait till the 9 Days to make a fleishig bris?!

Accordingly, from a halachic point of view, the Bagel n’ Lox Deluxe at a bris simply does not have the very same appeal!

Chanucat Habayit

images (4)There is a Jewish way to mark moving right into a new home, called a chanucat habayit celebration. Moving into a new home is a large task and completing it deserves celebration.  You have done lots of work to prepare your new home from looking at plans, designing the floor plan, choosing your roof, to signing off on the work.  It is no small feat.

Chanucat habayit, essentially devoting the house, is about saying thanks to God for reaching the turning point of a new residence and setting the specification wherefore sort of house you want to have. With those thoughts, the last Lubavitcher Rebbe, Menachem Mendel Schneerson, educated that religious publications and a tzedakah (charity) box ought to be the very first things to bring into a new house.

The idea of a chanukat habayit is based upon the conclusion of the First Holy place, where King Solomon led the country in petitions (I Kings 8). Today, we invite pals, eat, talk Torah and offer tzedakah, setting up the values you desire in your brand-new home. The peak is repairing the mezuzah, which calls for a true blessing. Some people additionally claim the true blessing shehechiyanu, giving thanks to God for reaching this moment.

A chanukat habayit in Israel handles even higher value as it meets the mitzvah of clearing up in the Land.

When Should You Build a Succah

There is a mitzvah, or commandment, to sit in the succahsukkah2 (small hut) representing the Israelite’s living in booths. Does there also exist a mitzvah to build one? Well, if you do not build it, just how could you rest in it, you may ask. Could you merely visit a hotel for Succot, or have the gardener, the home builder or the odd-job guy create your succah for you?

There were excellent rabbis, including Rashi, who said that constructing the succah is an extra mitzvah, but today we tend to follow the thought process that building the structure is preparation for the mitzvah (hechsher mitzvah) yet not one in itself.

However, many others state you ought to take some part in the building on your own and start your succah right after Yom Kippur to go from “strength to strength”.

If you’re too exhausted after fasting through Yom Kippur to get up a stepladder, begin planning your succah early or begin learning more about how you can construct it so you will be able to move straight from the high of Yom Kippur to the next spiritual activity.

The Jewish Vort

When a couple makes a decision to marry, Jewish-Wedding-Photograph-41they reveal the event with an engagement celebration. In Yiddish this occasion is called a vort, which implies a “word.” At the vort the man and woman traditionally give their “word” and formally dedicate themselves to marry.

There is a tradition to damage a ceramic plate at the vort. This symbolizes the seriousness of their dedication to every other person: Equally as breaking the plate is final, so as well the involvement is final and not effortlessly cancelled.

Damaging the plate likewise tempers the intense joy of the occasion, much like the glass which is broken under the chupah. It reminds us that the Temple is not yet reconstructed.

Usually, the couple’s moms are the ones that break the ceramic plate. They hold the plate together and drop it onto a tough surface. It is very important to wrap the plate well to guarantee that nobody gets hurt from the damaged items. One time I attended a vort where a flying piece from a not well-wrapped plate went into the leg of one of the mothers.

There are some that have a custom of making a necklace for the bride from the pieces of the broken plate.  Others offer the busted pieces to qualified single folks at the vort as if saying “may a plate soon be broken for you.” Still others will break the plate at the wedding event just before the chuppa.


Your wedding day is here.  ACC KetubahBetween the offering of the ring, and singing the Seven Blessings, there is an instead a less accessible item of the wedding, reviewing the Ketubah. The Ketubah is spoken in Aramaic, which is incomprehensible these days other than to a talmudically learned group, yet could just as well be read in Hebrew or English translations.

The conventional Ketubah consists of the bridegroom’s responsibilities to the new bride, mainly of a monetary nature, his commitment to support her in a dignified manner and also the quantity that she will get in the event of his fatality or divorce. There is some argument whether the Ketubah is mandated by the Torah or whether it was a rabbinic innovation. Those that take the last perspective say that the reason was to make sure that divorce should not be fast, easy or senseless for the husband as he would certainly be liable to a considerable payment.

Although the amounts mandated in the typical Ketubah are not utilized today as the basis of separation settlements, it is still purposeful for the bridegroom to
publicly attest specific commitments to sustain his spouse at the wedding celebration.