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Posts Tagged Rabbi Ariel Stone

Shabbat Naso 5774: G-d is in the Annoying Details Too

Shalom Shir Tikvah Learning Community, This week the parashat hashavua (“text of the week”) is called Naso, a word related to the Hebrew idiom for counting. It literally means “lift up the head”, and underscores the importance of truly seeing each person whom one is counting. This is different from the Western idea of “counting heads”, which only tells you how many bodies are in the room; to lift up the head is to look in the face, to take account of (“a count of”) each person in their personhood. It’s an interesting counter (sorry) to the prevailing communal idea: here we note each precious, unique and irreplaceable individual who makes up our community. That is the catch: a community is, after all, made up of individuals. There’s an old joke: “I love the Jewish people, it’s just Jews I can’t stand.” More accurately, for all of us the ideal

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The Letters Are The Life Of All, May 21 at the OJM

Brown Bag Lecture by Rabbi Ariel Stone at the  Oregon Jewish Museum, May 21  from 12-1PM According to ancient Jewish teachings, the universe was created using the twenty-two letters of the Hebrew alef-bet. Join Rabbi Ariel Stone, author of Because All Is One: Jewish Identity and the Mystery of the Sefirot, for a fascinating lunch time exploration of the Hebrew letters, so beautifully manifested in Sara Harwin’s art, through Jewish mysticism and midrash. No Hebrew required! Please RSVP to reserve space at [email protected] or 503/246-7479 No admission charge. The OJM is located at 1953 NW Kearney St.

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Shabbat BeHar 5774: Between Valley and Peak

Mah inyan shemitta eytzel har Sinai?  This is the classic Jewish form of the question you might recognize as “What does that have to do with all the tea in China?” or “What’s Hecuba to you, or you to Hecuba?” “What does shemitta have to do with Mt. Sinai?” This week’s parashat hashavua is named Behar, for “on the mountain”, i.e. Mt. Sinai. The first topic mentioned among the many mitzvot of this parashah is shemitta, a seven-year cycle of Shabbat rest for the agricultural land, the fruitfulness of which the ancient Israelites depend for their very lives. The shemitta command teaches that everything needs a Shabbat, not only the people and animals mentioned in the Shabbat mitzvah we repeat in our prayers every week on that day, but also the land itself. Here we are, deep in the details of the Book called VaYikra (Leviticus), learning law after law,

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Bluegrass Shabbat in the Park 2014

  Overlook Park, Friday July 18, 6 pm The only Shabbat service in town featuring bluegrass music! Musical guests Stumbleweed with J.D. Kleinke will open our evening. Bring a picnic dinner and your friends. We will welcome Shabbat in prayer and song, and share some hallah afterwards. To hear Stumbleweed in concert, click here.

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Shabbat Emor 5774: Acting Our Age

Shalom Shir Tikvah Learning Community, In parashat Emor, the first words describe G-d speaking to Moshe – not unusual. But then G-d goes on to tell Moshe to speak to Aharon, who in turn is to instruct the priests, his sons and their descendants.  The parashah later will turn to the rest of us, the b’nei Yisrael, often translated “children of Israel”. It is interesting to consider in what way we are children from the perspective of Leviticus. We might see in this wording a hint of the appropriate roles of priests, and also of children (and the adults who care for them). This week’s parashah is full of rules – some only for priests, and most of them regarding priestly things such as proper ritual. In this week’s parashah as well as some others we’ve seen in this book of Leviticus (which means “of the priests”, after all), it’s

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Women’s Day of Jewish Learning Sunday, May 4, 1 pm at the MJCC

Naomi Malka from the Adas Israel Community Mikvah is the keynote speaker on this day of learning about the many facets of mikvah. In addition to the keynote address, a panel discussion and breakout workshops will complete the afternoon. Rabbi Ariel will be teaching on Mikvah Basics: Making Ancient Wisdom Yours. To learn more about this event, click here. Click Here to Register! $18 in advance, $25 at the door

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Shabbat Kedoshim 5774: The Other Side of Fear

As this Shabbat approaches I am thinking a lot about the Jews of Ukraine, especially my friends of Kyiv Congregation HaTikvah, where I served as Rabbi in 1993-1994. The words of this week’s parashat hashavua will be read in Kyiv as in Paris as in New York as in Portland, Oregon. We all read the same Torah, but we come to it from many different places. We read it religiously every year; what that means is that we approach the text willing to grant in advance that there is some relevance that we will find in it. This year, I am blessed to read parashat Kedoshim from a place of personal security; I am not worried about civil war breaking out around me. I am not concerned about my physical safety when I go out on the street, and I do not expect a knock at my door. From this safe place, you and

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Yom HaShoah with the Oregon Holocaust Resource Center, April 24-28

Reshaping the World After the Holocaust The Oregon Holocaust Resource Center brings renowned speakers Rabbi Yitz Greenberg and Blu Greenberg to Portland promoting Jewish-Christian dialogue, April 24-28, benefiting the Oregon Holocaust Memorial and Education Fund The weekend, chaired by community leader Mark Rosenbaum and organized by the OHRC with the help of a legion of volunteers, will present a series of events and programs to remember those who suffered in the Holocaust and to learn from the lessons of that horrific chapter in human history. The weekend’s events are built on community-wide ecumenical partnerships, and are open to all. Rabbi Yitz Greenberg and Blu Greenberg will lead the weekend of activities, including lectures, presentations, classes, and commemorative community events. A complete list of events can be found online here.     Two events of note: At 3 pm on Sunday, April 27, the Oregon Board of Rabbis and OHRC co-sponsor the

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Shabbat Metzora: Take a Breath Before You Commit

Ever since just before Purim we’ve been encountering a series of special Shabbatot which are meant to get our attention and focus us upon the fact that Pesakh is coming. There is much to do to greet the Festival appropriately: house cleaning, Seder planning, tzedakah giving…. there are so many details and such a rush (and sometimes, such family dynamics) that it might remind you of the preparation before a wedding day. And that, of course, leads to a midrash offered by the Rabbi Leibele Eiger, a disciple of the Ishbitzer Rabbi (who wrote the popular Torah commentary Mei Shiloakh). He writes that this Shabbat, unlike last week and unlike next week, is not one of the Arba Parshiyot, the weeks of the special “four Parshas” that we read in the run-up to Pesakh. This Shabbat has no special extra designation; it is Shabbat Metzora, a regular Torah reading. For

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OM Shalom – A Jewish Kirtan! Sunday, April 6, 3 pm, at the Oregon Jewish Museum

Come together with Rabbi Ariel and J.D. Kleinke for a Jewish kirtan, an all-kosher adaptation of the ancient Hindu practice of sacred communal singing.  Kirtan is a call-and-response form of devotional music, native to India but now popular around the world in many blends – and an important part of traditional yogic practice.  The creation of sacred community through breath, voice, music and, often, spontaneous dance, kirtan singing also invokes the communal meditational spirit that is at the heart of most Jewish prayer services.  OM Shalom will include a collection of songs created or adapted for Jewish kirtans in Portland yoga studios and an occasional Shabbat service at our shul. OM Shalom will be highly participatory – so come prepared to sing! Bring your pillow for comfy floor seating! Chairs will also be available. Ticket Info: Cost: General Public: $10, OJM Members: $8, Students: $5 Purchase them here.

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