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Purim is known for costumes and cookies, but there’s a lot more depth to the holiday.
There are actually four mitzvot to Purim, or four things we are supposed to do to celebrate the holiday. Having a feast is indeed one of them, as are listening to the story (The Megillah Esther), giving gifts to friends (mishloach manot), and giving to the poor (matanot la’evyonim).
Living in Israel, traveling throughout the country numerous times, and leading Birthright Israel trips, one would think my connection to all parts of my homeland is strong and meaningful. However, part of having a connection with people, forming real memories on the land, and understanding its importance truly brings you much closer to the place.
I have too many books.
I’ve got bookshelves at home and bookshelves at work. I have books I’ll never look at and books I should have given away long ago.
My family and I moved here from Pennsylvania in August and even before we arrived, we had researched the JCC online. The tour of the facility we took on our very first day in San Antonio included a stop at The Vex, where I chatted with Ken Frazier and Dylan Brainard while my kids played on the set of One Flew over the Cuckoo’s Nest.
Once again, we're upstairs at the "J," in the JCC's Conference Room. There's just enough light coming from the hallway and the flat screen before us that I can make out the faces in profile of the other members of the Film Festival Committee. It's not just seeing two movies a week from the end of June till mid-October that makes me smile—it's the chance to spend time with a group of congenial grown-ups kibbutzing a few minutes before we start the movie of the day, and then, best of all, to join in the lively discussions that follow.
The New Diaspora: The Changing Landscape of American Jewish Fiction represents the best in American Jewish writing over the past fifty years. From the post-World War II writers to the present, this anthology of diverse and lively fiction reveals the changing landscape of American Jewish thought and suggests the evolving responses to Jewish identity in America.
In my mind, meditation was for hippies who didn’t have their sh*t together and mindfulness was just a fancy word for reformed hippies who barely had their sh*t together. I was happy to spend an hour each week in the confines of a therapy office, but meditation was an entirely different proposition. In my mind, it was just one step away from shaving my head and handing out flowers at the airport.
With compliments to the annual J-Serve event for teens, this new collaborative event, J-Schmooze, will be another outlet for teens to gather from all around San Antonio to experience something fun and Jewish. This event will allow teens from different backgrounds, Jewish experiences, schools and social circles to come together to connect through a fun filled evening with Jewish tradition in celebrating Havdallah, socially interacting, and connecting to one another on a deeper level.
I’ve been acting, on and off, for a bit over 40 years now, in school and at several San Antonio theaters. The stage has always been a second home, a place I’m compelled to return to now and again to keep me grounded. I first auditioned for a show at The Vex back in 2002.
Was Richard Strauss an anti-Semite? Is Strauss’s music anti-Semitic? Should the personal flaws of an artist affect our experience of the art? These are some of the questions that Maxine Cohen, David Gross, and I will confront in a public discussion at the JCC on January 4 as part of the San Antonio Symphony 2015 Strauss Festival.