The Rabbi, Beer-Brewer, and Price Regulator Who Brought 3rd-Century Talmudic Scholarship to Babylonia

Born in Babylonia in the late 2nd century CE, Abba ben Ayvo was one of the earliest amoraim—as the sages whose teachings make up the Gemara, or latter stratum of the Talmud, are known. His contemporaries knew him as Abba Arikha (Abba the Tall), but his influence was so great that the Talmud’s editors most often refer to him simply as Rav (rabbi). As a young man, he studied in the land of Israel before returning to his native country, which in his lifetime began to rival—and would later eclipse—Roman Palestine as the center of rabbinic intellectual activity. Henry Abramson presents a brief synopsis of his remarkable career. (Video, 4 minutes.)

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Read more at Orthodox Union

More about: ancient Judaism, Babylonian Jewry, Talmud

Despite Reasons for Worry, Jews Shouldn’t Lose Faith in the American Promise

Sept. 24 2021

From synagogue shootings, to attacks on Jews on the streets, to the gathering strength and viciousness of anti-Zionism, especially in the corridors of political power, American Jewry has ample reason for concern about its safety and wellbeing. But, surveying both the present situation and the deep roots of what has made America a welcoming home to Jews with “no analogue in the 2,000 years after the destruction of the Temple,” Josef Joffe argues that the U.S. remains exceptional. The bad news, however, is still bad:

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Read more at Commentary

More about: American exceptionalism, American Jewry, Anti-Semitism, Anti-Zionism, Chuck Schumer