Category: Tanakh (Hebrew Bible)

Ezekiel, Exodus, and Babylon

Exploring Babylon Chapter 17 Recent scholarship concerning the prophet Ezekiel touches on some fascinating questions about the extent to which Judeans in Babylonian exile were acculturated and how cultural contact between Babylon and Israel might […]

Computing Failures and Babylon

The People’s calculations before the Golden Calf incident, like attempts to calculate the end of exile, yield disastrous results.

Foreign Languages and Imagination

The brand new Koren Rav Kook Siddur presents commentary, not previously published in English — including this note on the Psalm 81 which sheds some light for #ExploringBabylon.

The Five Powers, part 3

A few notes on Rome — and on Micah’s “seven shepherds” — to round out the discussion of “Ma’oz Tzur.”

Chanukah and the Five Powers

Five foreign powers show up this week in the Jewish calendar. It’s worth examining each of these empires to see what light it sheds — on its own and in conjunction with the others.

Toward a Jewish Bible Reader’s Self-Inventory

Jews and other interested Bible readers are invited to test-drive “Jews’ Self Inventory for Bible Readers,” comment on it, and share results.

Babylon and Rachel’s Offering

This midrash offers lessons for people struggling to function with integrity and flexibility in a diverse, often contradictory, world.

Babylon and the Writing on the Wall

Rome’s satirical translation of the “writing on the wall” seems as appropriate to 2017 as to 1939, and it’s quite faithful to the biblical text… This song also leads to further questions about how we understand and interact with sacred text, particularly at times of crisis.

Chana Bloch: Her Memory For a Poetic Blessing

Chana Bloch, poet, translator, and teacher, died on May 19, 2017.

Amichai’s Love and the Entwives

Ents are Middle Earth’s very old, male, tree-like creatures who have somehow…