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Five Questions with Mark Gerson

Mark Gerson is a serial entrepreneur, investor and philanthropist (see his short bio below). I first met Mark in Israel in 2003, when he offered me a job at GLG straight out of college. It was one of the most rewarding work and personal experiences in my career, and also where I met my wife. Mark is one of the smartest and thoughtful people, and I’ve been lucky to call him a friend ever since. This week, Mark launched his new book, The Telling, and I thought it’s worth sharing with a broader...
Tags: New York, Entrepreneurship, Africa, Israel, Uncategorized, Trends, Judaism, Christian, Impact Investing, ESG, Founder, Mark, Torah, Deuteronomy, GLG, Mt Sinai

Israel’s High Court Recognizes Religious Conversions Of Liberal-Leaning Groups

People who convert to Judaism through the Reform and Conservative movements are Jewish, Israel's highest court declared.
Tags: News, Israel, Judaism

Purim in Covid times – in pictures

Israel has set a curfew to limit festivities for the Jewish holiday when revellers don costumes and party into the night. Similarly muted celebrations have taken place around the world Continue reading...
Tags: Photography, Israel, Religion, World news, Judaism, Festivals, COVID

Could a former bar be one of Spain's lost medieval synagogues?

Work is under way to see whether an abandoned 14th-century building is part of the legacy of the country’s exiled Jews The rambling, 14th-century building that sits off a narrow alley in the historic heart of Utrera, its patio walls furred with moss and its inner ones painted pugnacious shades of purple and orange, has led a long and varied existence.Over the centuries, it has served the Andalucían city as a hospital, a home for abandoned children, a restaurant and, in its final incarnation, a b...
Tags: Europe, Religion, Spain, World news, Judaism, Utrera

CPAC canceled a speaker who was found sharing anti-Semitic conspiracy theories, after declaring this year's theme is 'America Uncanceled'

Donald Trump speaking at CPAC 2020. Tasos Katopodis/Getty Images CPAC announced Monday it was canceling scheduled speaker Young Pharoah.  A report found that the rapper and activist had spread anti-Semitic conspiracy theories online. Critics of the move pointed out that this year's CPAC theme is opposing "cancel culture." Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories. The Conservative Political Action Committee announced Monday that it was canceling a scheduled speaker after it em...
Tags: Politics, America, Trends, Judaism, News UK, Anti-semitism, Donald Trump, Trump, Media Matters, Orlando Florida, Pharoah, Ben Jacobs, Matt Schlapp, Eric Hananoki, Conservative Political Action Committee, CPAC

Conservative political conference CPAC drops speaker over anti-Semitic tweets

Media Matters of America reported that Young Pharaoh "has told followers that Judaism is a 'complete lie' and 'made up for political gain.'"       [Author: USA TODAY]
Tags: Usa, News, Judaism, Usa Today, CPAC, Media Matters of America, Young Pharaoh

Christians, Muslims and Jews to share faith centre in Berlin

€47m building will feature a church, a mosque and a synagogue all linked to a central meeting spaceOn the site of a church torn down by East Germany’s communist rulers, a new place of worship is set to rise that will bring Christians, Jews and Muslims under one roof – and it has already been dubbed a “churmosquagogue”.The foundation stone of the House of One in Berlin will be laid at a ceremony on 27 May, marking the end of 10 years of planning and the beginning of an estimated four years of con...
Tags: Europe, Germany, Berlin, Religion, Communities, Society, World news, Culture, Architecture, Art and design, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, East Germany, Kuehn Malvezzi

Rabbis warn over Purim celebrations Covid risk

Ultra-Orthodox community in north London told to keep socially distant after last year’s festivities led to huge spike in infectionsUltra-Orthodox rabbis in north London have issued unprecedented guidance on the eve of the Jewish festival of Purim in a bid to avoid a repeat of last year’s celebrations that led to a huge spike in Covid infections.The advice was issued by the Office of the Rabbinate of the Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregations in the form of a notice to be displayed in synagogues...
Tags: Health, London, Religion, Communities, Society, UK News, Infectious Diseases, Judaism, Coronavirus, COVID

'Love’s labours should be lost': Maria Stepanova, Russia's next great writer

The Muscovite’s work is arriving in English this year in three books of remarkable memoir, poems and essays that, she explains, reach for ‘the truth of the past’Years ago, Maria Stepanova visited the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington DC to do research for a book she would end up working on for 30 years. After telling him of her plan, the museum adviser replied: “Ah. One of those books where the author travels around the world in search of his or her roots – there are plenty o...
Tags: Europe, Books, Russia, Poetry, Culture, Judaism, Washington Dc, Communism, Poland, Moscow, Fiction in translation, Belarus, Autobiography and memoir, Essays, Nos, United States Holocaust Memorial Museum

A unique African community who have practiced Judaism for a century despite persecution say they deserve the right to be recognized as Jews by Israel

Ugandan Jew Israel Siriri prays at the Stern Synagogue in Mbale, Uganda. Stephen Wandera/AP A Ugandan Jew, Yosef Kibita, has had his request to immigrate to Israel rejected. Israel's Supreme Court has said that his conversion did not occur in a "recognized" community. Uganda's chief rabbi wants the Abuyudaya community to be recognized and treated fairly. Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories.   A legal battle is underway in Israel to formally recognize a unique community o...
Tags: Politics, Supreme Court, Africa, Israel, Immigration, International, Trends, Uganda, Judaism, News UK, Parliament, Jews, Judah, Interior Ministry, Amin, Christianity and Judaism

Trump's top lawyer asks to delay the impeachment trial if its not finished by the beginning of Sabbath

The US Capitol, as seen from the Russell Senate Office Building on Capitol Hill. AP Photo/Patrick Semansky Trump's top defense lawyer asked the Senate to suspend the impeachment trial during the Sabbath. In a letter to Senate leaders, David Schoen said he is a religious Jew who observes the Sabbath. The office for Senator Chuck Schumer said it "respects" the request and will "accommodate it."  Visit the Business section of Insider for more stories. One of Former President Trump's impeachme...
Tags: Politics, Law, Senate, US, Trends, Cnn, Judaism, New York Times, News UK, Mitch McConnell, Capitol Hill, Times, Trump, Schumer, Office Building, Chuck Schumer

Invite-only chat app Clubhouse, which Elon Musk used over the weekend, says it plans to open its doors to everyone as soon as possible

A woman in conversation on her smartphone Maskot/Getty Images Clubhouse's CEO said the currently invite-only platform will open to all users as soon as possible. Clubhouse operates as a real time, audio-only application which allows users to go into individual "rooms" and have open conversations. The site has generated headlines after hosting conversations with public figures like Oprah Winfrey and Elon Musk. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more stories. Clubhouse CEO Paul Davison to...
Tags: Facebook, Elon Musk, News, Amc, Trends, Social Media, Judaism, Silicon Valley, Oprah Winfrey, Donald Trump, Jared Leto, Free Speech, Robinhood, Cnbc, Gamestop, Clubhouse

One of the earliest mosques has been unearthed beside the Sea of Galilee and indicates Muslims, Jews, and Christians lived in harmony

Dr. Katia Cytryn-Silverman, an archaeologist with The Hebrew University of Jerusalem, at the dig site in Tiberias, northern Israel, Wednesday, Jan. 27, 2021. Maya Alleruzzo/Associated Press The foundations of an ancient mosque have been unearthed in Israel. It was built around a generation after the Prophet Mohammed, making it one of the oldest. Archaeologists say its building phases indicate peaceful coexistence between religions at the time. Visit Business Insider's homepage for more sto...
Tags: Science, News, Israel, Jerusalem, Trends, Ap, Judaism, Middle East, Christianity, Islam, Mosque, Mohammed, Medina, Haaretz, Old City, Levant

Large weddings, packed schools: Haredi Jews flout English lockdown

Community insiders say weddings taking place each week and there is ‘no respect for the guidelines’Coronavirus – latest updatesSee all our coronavirus coverageEngland’s lockdown rules are being flouted in ultra-Orthodox Jewish areas, with large weddings taking place each week and schools continuing to operate, according to community insiders and local residents.Last week police discovered 150 guests celebrating a wedding at the Yesodey Hatorah girls’ school in Stamford Hill, north London. The sc...
Tags: Health, London, Religion, UK News, Judaism, Manchester, Stamford Hill, Coronavirus, Yesodey Hatorah, Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregations Continue

‘Is it OK to eat during online mass?’: how the faithful handle lockdown

From streamed baptisms to the impossibility of hajj, it’s been a tricky time for religious people to stay observant. But many have some holy hacksWell before places of worship were closed during the first lockdown, we hectored my father to remain indoors and stay safe. He rebelled. One frigid Sunday last March, through the silence of a sleeping household, he slunk down the hall and to the kitchen, careful not to rouse his house guests.We don’t know if his plan was dependent on my siblings being ...
Tags: Religion, Communities, Society, Judaism, Catholicism, Christianity, Islam, Coronavirus

Essenes in Judaean Society: the sectarians of the Dead Sea Scrolls

The sectarians reflected in the Dead Sea Scrolls, identified with the Essenes, were not the isolated community of popular imagination that spent their days praying, studying scriptures, and waiting for one or two messiahs in the desert. Some of them did do so, especially those who lived at a site near the Dead Sea known as Khirbet (‘ruins of’) Qumran, but most of them did not. Four thousand of them lived in towns, villages, and large groups throughout Judaea. They were in Jerusalem, where a gate...
Tags: Books, Featured, Religion, Jerusalem, Rome, Judaism, Mediterranean, Philo, Herod, Simon, Romans, Roman Senate, Dead Sea, Josephus, Masada, Habakkuk

The director who dared to suggest Jewish men don't need rescuing by blond women

The late film-maker Joan Micklin Silver exploded the cliches of modern romances. If only others would do the sameThe director Joan Micklin Silver, who died last week, was – to use the kind of cliche she abhorred – a pioneer. She was a female director at a time when studio executives were more than comfortable with being openly sexist, telling Silver: “Women directors are one more problem we don’t need.” She made distinctly Jewish movies, as opposed to the kind of Jewish-lite movies that were – a...
Tags: Hollywood, Film, Netflix, Culture, Judaism, Woody Allen, Harry Met Sally, Lower East Side, Carol Kane, Amy Irving, Hester Street, Joan Micklin Silver, Comedy films, Peter Riegert, Steven Keats

Survey shows Congress is more religious than America

The newest survey of congressional religious beliefs shows our representatives aren't quite like us.Members of Congress are much more religious and more Christian than the general population. The effects of this disconnect are debatable. The Congress of the United States is much smaller than the national legislatures of other Western Democracies in proportional terms. Each member of The House of Representatives comes from a district of about 700,000 people, and each Senator can claim to speak f...
Tags: Politics, Congress, Democracy, Government, Religion, America, United States, Judaism, House Of Representatives, Innovation, Catholic, Congressional, Gallop, Orthodox Christians

An Animated Introduction to Baruch Spinoza: The “Philosopher’s Philosopher” The so-called Enlightenment period encompasses a surprisingly diverse collection of thinkers, if not always in ethnic or national origin, at least in intellectual disposition, including perhaps the age’s most influential philosopher, the “philosopher’s philosopher,” writes Assad Meymandi. Baruch Spinoza did not fit the image of the bewigged philosopher-gentleman of means we tend to popularly associate with Enlightenment thought. He was born to ...
Tags: Google, College, Judaism, Philosophy, Alain De Botton, Facebook Twitter, Loyola, Voltaire, Josh Jones, Sagan, Nietzsche, Baruch Spinoza, Leibniz, Descartes, Al Farabi, Spinoza

The Weird Case Of The Hallmark Channel’s Jewish Christmas Movies

There’s the 23andMe email telling a Christmas-obsessed woman that she’s 50 percent Jewish; there’s the central character who is an outsider to Judaism; there is the “We’re just like you!” theme, and then there are the many, many, many, many, MANY Hanukkah decorations. “The trend is an assimilationist project which tests the meaning of the increasingly buzzword-y, amorphous concepts of ‘diversity’ and ‘inclusion.’ Do Jews really want or need to see themselves in Christmas Movie World?” – HuffPos...
Tags: Art, Media, Judaism, 12.24.20

Faith leaders encourage coronavirus vaccinations among Southern California worshippers

As hospital and health-care workers across Southern California began lining up this week for the much-anticipated coronavirus vaccines, excitement over the potential antidote to the virus’s ferocious spread this winter has been dampened by skepticism over the safety, efficacy and morality of the treatments. According to a Kaiser Family Foundation poll in late November and early December, as Pfizer and Moderna prepared to roll out their vaccines, about 71% of survey respondents said they would ge...
Tags: News, Supreme Court, College, Religion, Sport, Public Health, Lego, Soccer, Judaism, Healthcare, Islam, Catholic Church, Miami, Catholic, Christian, Pfizer

"In the two weeks since commercial flights began between Tel Aviv and the Emirati cities of Dubai and Abu Dhabi, Israelis have caused a remarkable tourism boomlet in the Gulf nation."

"Suddenly, Hebrew can be heard throughout the markets, malls and beaches of a destination that was strictly off-limits until the two countries achieved a diplomatic breakthrough in August and established normal relations. More than 50,000 Israelis have brushed aside covid-19 concerns, a terrorism warning and decades of tension to make the three-hour flight across the Arab Peninsula.... The first Israelis to arrive described a congenial culture clash unlike anything they have experienced in the r...
Tags: Travel, Law, Israel, Tel Aviv, Wealth, Egypt, Judaism, Dubai, Jordan, Burj Khalifa, Gulf, Trump, JCC, Dubai Mall, Festivities, Ann Althouse

Giuliani doubles down, says Soros uses Judaism as ‘a shield and a sword’

The former New York mayor is doubling down on his statements on Soros’ Jewish identity, saying that he is “the last person in the world...
Tags: New York, Judaism, Giuliani, Soros

Hundreds of Ethiopian immigrants welcomed in Israel by PM

Benjamin Netanyahu greets arrivals as part of pledge to bring all Ethiopians of Jewish lineage to IsraelHundreds of Ethiopian immigrants on Thursday arrived at a festive ceremony at Israel’s international airport, as the Israeli government took a step towards carrying out its pledge to reunite hundreds of families split between the two countries.Some 300 people landed on the Ethiopian Airlines flight, with many waving flags or stopping to kiss the ground as they stepped off the aircraft onto a r...
Tags: Africa, Israel, Religion, World news, Middle East and North Africa, Judaism, Ethiopia, Benjamin Netanyahu, Ethiopian Airlines

Non-Christian faiths welcome Christmas easing of Covid rules

Religious leaders pleased that Christians will not experience ‘same disappointment’ they didRepresentatives of faiths that have been unable to gather for religious festivals this year because of the pandemic have welcomed the fact that Christians will not have to experience “the same disappointment and deflation” they did.The Muslim festivals of Eid al-Fitr and Eid al-Adha, the Jewish holy days of Passover, Rosh Hashanah (the Jewish new year) and Yom Kippur, and Diwali festival of lights celebra...
Tags: Religion, Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Diwali, Sikhism, Eid al-Fitr, Eid al-Adha, Coronavirus

Meet the Bidens: America's new First Family

Sen. Joseph R. Biden Jr. standing with his family on back of a train after announcing his candidacy for the Democratic presidential nomination in June 1987. Getty Images The Biden family is the new First Family.  Former Vice President Joe Biden will be joined in the White House by his wife, Jill Biden, and their dogs, Champ and Major. Joe Biden has a daughter named Ashley with Jill, his second wife. He had three children with his first wife, Neilia, only one of whom, his son Hunter, is sti...
Tags: Apple, New York Post, Obama, Navy, Senate, White House, America, Barack Obama, Trends, Joe Biden, Ukraine, Ap, Bbc, Hillary Clinton, United States, Judaism

Archbishop of Canterbury joins faith leaders' outcry over lockdown ban on worship

Religious leaders have challenged the government's decision to ban “essential” communal worship during lockdown. Continuation of public worship is “essential”, the leaders of the Church of England, the Roman Catholic church and orthodox Judaism, along with Muslim, Hindu, Sikh and Pentecostal representatives, have warned. In an open letter addressed to Prime Minister Boris Johnson, Communities Secretary Robert Jenrick, and Minister of State Lord Stephen Greenhalgh, the coalition of England’s ...
Tags: England, News, Judaism, Boris Johnson, Canterbury, Robert Jenrick, Muslim Hindu Sikh, Stephen Greenhalgh

Must be the season of the witch

Here's a little Halloween treat, a conversation with Boing Boing contributor, Peter Bebergal (Season of the Witch, Strange Frequencies) on The Vibe of the Tribe Podcast. Peter talks with the hosts about the monsters of Jewish folklore. — Read the rest
Tags: Halloween, Post, News, Judaism, Spirituality, Occult, Peter Bebergal, Peter Bebergal Season

Sassoon family collection of Jewish artefacts to be sold at auction

Unparalleled collection of one of the greatest Jewish dynasties in the world to go on sale in New YorkAn unparalleled collection of Judaica amassed by one of the greatest Jewish dynasties in the world and not seen in public for over a century is to be sold at auction.The trove of 68 items includes silver objects, Hebrew manuscripts and family artefacts collected by the Sassoon family. Some items date back to the 11th century, and they originate from countries from east Asia to western Europe. Co...
Tags: Asia, Europe, New York, Religion, World news, US news, Culture, Art and design, Judaism, Sassoon, Judaica

Europe's Jewish population has dropped 60% in last 50 years

Soviet Union’s collapse may be responsible for exodus from eastern EuropeEurope has lost almost 60% of its Jewish population over the past 50 years, mainly as a result of the collapse of the Soviet Union after which many Jews left eastern Europe as borders opened, a study shows.Only about 9% of the global Jewish population now lives in Europe, compared with nearly 90% in the late 19th century – but similar to the proportion 1,000 years ago. Continue reading...
Tags: Europe, Religion, World news, Holocaust, Judaism, Soviet Union