Get latest articles and videos with Jewish
inspiration and insights
What is the value of spending our time on lost causes?
In trying to save a life, Rabbi Nehemia Lavi paid with his life.
The heart of the entire Jewish people is broken.
A recent spate of offensive statements and images are being excused as shockingly dumb errors.
Boycotting the narrow-minded bigotry of a creative genius.
Henry Gallant was a passenger on the doomed SS St. Louis that fled Nazi Germany but was refused entry.
Taking a picture is not the same thing as experiencing a moment. In fact it’s a way of forgetting.
My husband wants me to join him at a business-related party, I want to stay at home to complete my work.
The BBC’s initial report on the recent Israeli murders left me speechless.
Why Jewish burial is important — for you and the soul of the departed.
My path to Judaism began with the question: What would Jesus do?
The holidays are over. Here’s how to hold onto the light.
All we have is right now, this moment.
Children develop necessary skills and character traits by encountering and overcoming failure.
Two pivotal ideas about Sukkot.
The relationship may have failed but you’re not a failure.
And how to leap over them.
Yes, you can build chemistry! Here are 8 ways to go about it.
If God is good, why is the world so bad?
Israel Independence Day is the time to ask: Where have we been, and where are we heading?
Beyond the Lullaby Effect: Reading the Bible with open eyes.
Practical and relevant insights on the weekly parsha.
Advanced-level midrashic and Kabbalistic illuminations on the weekly parsha.
Lessons, stories and discussion questions for parents and kids.
How my father’s journey from Santa Claus to a gift-lugging dog in a drainpipe led me to Judaism, sort of.
The Hanukkah battle isn’t over. We fight with light.
Candlelight burning so bright. You can’t ever take my light.
Dispelling five myths that block us from connecting to God.
Apple is making an aggressive play for the Jewish cell phone market. Goodbye Siri, hello Shira.
It’s tough, being a work-at-home husband.
What is the most ridiculous Jewish stereotype you have ever heard?
This Rosh Hashanah, make the connection. A stirring video to share with friends.
You won’t believe what this man says about being an Israeli Jew.
The most fateful moment in my life came when I asked myself, “Who am I?” This is my answer.
August 20, 2011
August 26, 2011 3:49 PM
Excellent summary of what's going on today
In my opinion this is one of your best. Terrific!
August 26, 2011 3:30 PM
coming to the states made us religeous
I do see the point the you are making that living outside of Israel poses many dangers amongst them assimilation. However, in my case, and few other cases that I know of, we have become more observant. Had I stayed in Israel, I would have followed the crowed gone to the army and G-d knows where I would be. But living in America, I knew I was different and with only few wrong moves I was almost assimilated too. With Hashem's help, we became more religeous. I wish that on all the Jews in the diaspora and Israel see how empty and meaning less life is without Judaism.
August 26, 2011 10:51 AM
The consequences of what we say and do, our actions, or our thoughts will always affect us or someone else. It cant be avoided. I have always tried to think this way. And to act in accordance with what will happen when i do do something. It has always influenced me. And sometimes can be discouraging or a hindrance. But I continue to do it anyway, I know its what i should do.
August 25, 2011 9:13 PM
Jews in the homeland
I didn't walk for 3 months... I boarded a plane 37 years ago, and of all my relatives still living abroad, I am the only one with 100% Jewish (frum) grandchildren.
August 24, 2011 7:18 PM
Lori, i always feel good after hearing what you have to say
l really enjoy all of Lori's articles ..i made aliyah 11 years ag ..and she alwys "toucheds a core"
August 24, 2011 3:50 PM
What we do in the present, will effect the future, and future generations. This is her point. It's a broad spectrum of decisions we make. Those decisions we make we are not isolated by whom they can effect. Before making the final decision, over anything major, realizing it's not just about "you" it's not just about "your" future, for we are not isolated unto ourselves.
August 24, 2011 12:41 AM
Think, think, think into the future before acting
Thinking into the future is not easy but necessary before making major decisions .Now that I've seen Lori really live here in Atlanta, I can appreciate her advice even more. Thanks Lori and thanks Aish.
August 23, 2011 10:46 PM
its nice to have wealth but its not every thing in this world there a lot more important things in life than money one day we are going to be buried 10 feet under ground and leave every thing behinde
August 23, 2011 3:11 PM
today i made the decision to leave Israel and go back to my home. I grew up around non jews all my life and have a stronger faith and more emunah than most people i have met here. life is not as simplistic as you say. So what if Jews marry out? sure, not ideal, but have you seen the Jewish men out there? there is a reason for marrying out, many! Aish has hugely contributed to creating a Jewish environment that displays positive Jewish values however they are rather isolated and does not evenly represent the state of the Jewish people here in Israel nor in the diaspora.
Kids may grow up in a Jewish environment here and marry Jewish here, but they predominantly lack any understanding of bein adam le chavero or derech eretz, even if they are accepted into one of the one dimensional groups here. And if they are not squeezed into one of the groups here or dont fit in, by the time they are 5/6 they already see themselves as failures...
It is the Jewish people that have created a country where even the Jews do not fit in..
always look at both sides of the coin
August 23, 2011 3:06 AM
I may be missing something but this article does not ring true to me
I spend time in Israel,have a son there and plan to move there.I believe that it's the right choice for me and I want to be part of the redemption processthat I believe is happening in Zion. It's based more on faith than logic. It seems to me that a case can be made that Israel is hardly the safest place for many Jews from a physical or spiritual standpoint. Most frum Jews in Boro Park,Lakewood.Muncie etc seem to believe this and are not presently moving. I think that most non Orthodox Jews outside of Israel[and a growing minority in secular Israel] don't think it is so important that their kids and grand kids be Jews. The Orthodox who for certain do believe that it's essential,most often live in insular communities where assimilation is not an issue. As I understand it prior to the State of Israel there was almost no assimilation in Iraqi Jewry.After the Zionist State was founded many Iraqi Jews immigrated to Israel and many of their children left the Torah observant lifestyle of their parents. Some like your new friend's friends who were raised in Israel left the country, or if they stayed their kids are often far removed from Torah. Fortunately, thanks to Aish and other outreach orgs some are returning.
August 23, 2011 12:36 AM
plans and predictions
It's important to have a plan and attempt to predict what the future will unfold. It can usually be what one makes of it, given his/her free will. But sadly, in America, at least economically, economic goals only stretch for a quarter of a year while other countries like China set goals for the next 50-100 years. Does anyone know how far in advance Israel sets its economic goals (even though there were massive protests over there regarding the economic injustice)?...Also, how can one cope with negative predictions that come true? Such negative predictions can be very mean-spirited!
August 22, 2011 10:27 PM
Not sure people move out of Israel to get rich, may be just to get by. In Israel "the ruling 1/3" is getting richer and richer while the 2/3 left cannot afford to rent an appartment, forget about buying one. Food, clothing, an outing, education - what's that when a few will employ his fellow jew for more than the basic 6.1 U$/hour? Israel DOES NOT CARE about the well being of her citizens any more. Unless a major socio - economic reform is implemented within months, if not terrorists, we will destroy ourselves first.
August 22, 2011 3:00 AM
I agree with Lori, but also with 'Aspiring Father'
I agree with what Lori said, but I also agree with what 'Aspiring Father' said. My fiance's cousin went to a yeshiva school in Melbourne until grade 10, but grades 11 and 12 at that school are really for boys who wish to become rabbis. So he changed to another Jewish private school in Melbourne with a lot of *very* rich kids! The cousin's father (who lives in Israel, his parents are divorced) paid for his schooling, but he lived in Melbourne with his mother who was not that well off. So the cousin was naughty and did drugs and got in trouble with the police to try to impress the rich kids at the school and look 'cool', because he couldn't fit in with them money-wise. So I am in agreement with 'Aspiring Father' in relation to not sending your kids to a private school if you are not super-well off. This goes for any private school, really, not just Jewish schools. Kids will be kids.
August 22, 2011 6:47 AM
With this thinking
With this thinking you might as well not send kids out into the world at all. Plus, the stereotypes in some of the e-mails here are not necessarily the reason certain kids go off the right path. In addition, there are many fine people with higher incomes who help many others in this world. Last, but not least,, life is tough, but our purpose in life is worth the challenges. Lori is on target!
August 21, 2011 2:17 PM
What Lori Left Out
Lori disregarded the fact that if you choose to send your kids to a day school, you may well find yourself working such long hours and seeing your family so little (if you are a father) that you have no trace of shalom bayit left. If you choose to live in a Jewish community, you may find your kids growing up around so many overprivileged doctors and lawyers to the extent that all of your efforts at teaching them modesty and humility are for naught. Sometimes, if what we really want are the fundamental values of Torah, surrounding ourselves with the sort of Jews who predominate in 21st Century American Jewish communities is the least-effective way to go about getting the job done.
And some of us are going to wait for the Moshiach before moving to Israel, thank you very much.
August 22, 2011 12:32 AM
Jewish education is absolutely a necessity, but the fact of the matter is the current model of day schools is simply unsustainable financially. Good education costs money, and it's worth going into debt for. But let's be real here: the average American Jewish family cannot afford $10k in day school for two or more kids, nor can they afford $100k in loans on top of other living expenses and their own college loans. Asking teachers to tolerate late payment is unacceptable and not in line with Torah values.
Also, another aspect of day schools I can't stand is that it hurts already fragile achdut. "Orthodox" go to day schools, "Reform" and "Conservative" Jews do not. Jewish education is in dire need of fostering unity in an economically feasible way. I am aware of all the social benefits of day schools, but the counter to that is that it fosters a misconception that it is easy to be Jewish, just buy the right tools. I am a halakhic convert, and know and love all kinds of Jews, but the kind who pushed me to join the Jewish people is undoubtedly secular Jews who have been rooted in Torah ethics. Orthodox Jews may have the market cornered on Jewish commitment, but too often they don't act in accordance with the ethical commandments endowed to them by G-d. Only with BOTH proper ethics and a strong footing in who we are as Jews will world peace come. It can be done!
Jewish education is absolutely a necessity, yes -- but my goodness does the current model need a serious reality check and admins who don't pay teachers on time (a TRAVESTY in public schools -- you'd better believe there'd be a strike) should be given a Jewish education of their own. Ideals and idealism are nice, and it's crucial to be rooted in what it means to be a Jew but darlin' the real world, including real incomes, doesn't change for what we want it to be.
(And for the record, I am a staunch Zionist.)
August 22, 2011 6:41 AM
You state: "Orthodox Jews may have the market cornered on Jewish commitment, but too often they don't act in accordance with the ethical commandments endowed to them by G-d." On what basis do you make such a shameful remark? While of course every group has its bad apples, it is the exception not the rule. Just look at all the chesed that goes on as well as so many other behaviors which benefit this world. Moreover, perhaps you feel you set certain standards, but keep in mind no human being is perfect. Rather than finding fault in a public forum against the Orthodox community, I would be grateful for the majority of Orthodox Jews who make incredible sacrifices on behalf of us all. If all other Jews did so as well we wouldn't have problems financing day schools. Catch what I'm say darlin'.
August 22, 2011 12:57 AM
Being educated is certainly not bad -- JDs and MDs can do tremendous good. I agree that many have egos, but many also do pro-bono work. Plus, not all Jews are lawyers and doctors. Let's leave the "task" of perpetuating stereotypes to the anti-Semites and focus on our job of tikkun olam...
August 22, 2011 6:51 AM
Yes, I agree with what you said so well, except I would say focus on our job of "doing the mitzvohs." It's the job of all peoples to do Tikkun Olam. Jews do it within the context of Torah mitzvohs.
Display my name?
Your email address is kept private. Our editor needs it in case we have a question about your comment.