: Israel

Rabbi Kenneth Auman

Rabbi Kenneth Auman has been an adjunct professor of Jewish studies at Stern College for Women at Yeshiva University since 1993. Rabbi Auman is also spiritual leader of the Young Israel of Flatbush, where he has served since 1984. Rabbi Auman is well known among his congregants and students for his warmth, humor and impressive scholarship, and has become a highly sought-after speaker in history, halakha and hashkafa. In addition to his rabbinical and teaching roles, Rabbi Auman is active in many community causes. Rabbi Auman has served as president of the Vaad Harabonim of Flatbush, established the Kehillah Kashrus Rabbinical Board, served as rabbinic advisor to the Get organization, was president of the Rabbinical Council of America and has played an important role in maintaining the Flatbush eruv. Rabbi Auman earned a BA in Jewish studies at Yeshiva College and an MA in medieval Jewish history from Bernard Revel Graduate School in Jewish Studies. He received both Yadin Yadin and Yoreh Yoreh semikha from Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. Rabbi Auman previously served as spiritual leader of Young Israel of Stamford and Inwood Jewish Center. He began his teaching career at SAR Academy in the Bronx and Ramaz Upper School in Manhattan. Sample Titles ISRAEL: The modern State as heir to the ancient kingdom May one go on the Har Habayit? Does arguing with G-d make any sense? The Mitzvah of chessed Shidduchim, Bashert, and dating The Jewish wedding ceremony How does prayer work? The seudat havra’ah and other cheerful topics What’s in a name? Attempting to be an honest employer or employee Receiving blessings from angels Family Dynamics Dreams and their significance The mitzvoth of Yibbum and chalitza – Jewish continuity Kavod hamet Reward and Punishment: Is the World Fair? The Halachic Obligations of Non- Jews How Much Are We Influenced by our Surroundings? The Mitzvah of Living and Settling in the Land of Israel Does Gd Judge us on Our Present or on Our Future? Halachic...

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Rabbi Mordechai Becher

Rabbi Mordechai Becher, originally from Australia, an instructor at the James Striar School of Yeshiva University and a senior lecturer for the Gateways Organization. Rabbi Becher received his ordination from the Chief Rabbinate of Israel. He taught at Ohr Somayach, Neve Yerushalayim and Darchei Binah in Jerusalem for 15 years, served in the Israel Defence Forces and taught in a number of Rabbinic training programs. His latest book, Gateway to Judaism, published by Shaar Press, is now in its sixth printing. Rabbi Becher has lectured for the UJA, Jewish Federations, the Zionist Organization of America, Hillel and is on the speakers’ bureau of the Israeli Consulate in New York. Rabbi Becher has answered thousands of questions on the Ask-the-Rabbi website, and has taught in Canada, the United States, England, Israel, South Africa, Australia and Russia. Sample Titles “An Eye For An Eye”: What Does it Really Mean? What If We Found Moshe’s Tefillin – Archaeology and Halachah Occupied or Liberated: Whose Land Is It Anyway? Jewish State or State for Jews? The Ideal of a Jewish State in Jewish Thought Cloning in Halachah “Triage” Rationing Resources, and Priorities in Medical Emergencies The Sabbath : Who Invented the Weekend Anyway? Exile of the Body, Exile of the Soul: The Exodus as a Metaphor. Freewill and Conditioning: A Delicate Balance. Jewish Law in a Non-Jewish Society Strings Attached: The Mitzvah of Tzitzit From Cairo to Cambridge: Jewish Treasures of Egypt (Cairo Genizah A/V) A Prophet for Our Time: The Life and Philosophy of Rabbi Samson Raphael...

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Rabbi Yosef Blau

Rabbi Yosef Blau has been mashgiach ruchani (spiritual guidance counselor) at the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary at Yeshiva University since 1977. He also serves as spiritual guidance counselor for students at Yeshiva College. Rabbi Blau earned a BA in 1959 from Yeshiva College and an MS at Yeshiva’s Belfer Graduate School of Science in 1960. He was ordained at RIETS in 1961. Rabbis Blau is president of the Religious Zionists of America and served as national president of Yavneh, the National Religious Jewish Students’ Association. He is a former national vice president of the National Conference of Yeshiva Principals. An author of many articles on Jewish thought, Rabbi Blau became a member of the Orthodox Forum in 1989. He is a former member of the executive board of the Orthodox Caucus, was a delegate from the Religious Zionists of America to the World Zionist Congress and was elected a member of the Vaad Hapoel of the World Zionist Organization. Sample Titles Preserving the Jewish Character of Israel Challenges facing religious Zionism Halakhic Responses to scientific, economic, and social changes in society Women’s role in Orthodox Judaism The ethical dimension in Judaism Relating to non-Orthodox Jews Living in democratic America: An Orthodox Jewish perspective Moshe and Aharon: Balancing Truth and Peace Religion and Superstition A historical analysis of Orthodoxy in...

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Rabbi Dr. Kenneth Brander

Rabbi Dr. Kenneth (Kenny) Brander is Vice President for University and Community Life at Yeshiva University.  He concurrently serves as the inaugural David Mitzner Dean of Yeshiva University Center for the Jewish Future. The CJF shapes, enriches and inspires the contemporary Jewish community by convening the resources of Yeshiva. It does so by infusing the student body with the spirit of leadership and a sense of klal Yisrael. CJF serves to build, cultivate and support communities, rabbinic and lay leaders, and individuals. Furthermore, CJF is creating a global movement that promotes the values of Yeshiva. Rabbi Brander is rabbi emeritus of the Boca Raton Synagogue, founding dean of the Boca Raton Community Kollel and founder of the Weinbaum Yeshiva High School of Broward and Palm Beach counties. During his 14 years of service to that community, he oversaw its explosive growth from 60 families to some 600 families. Rabbi Brander is a 1984 alumnus of Yeshiva College and received his ordination from the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary in 1986. At RIETS, he had the distinction of serving as personal aide to the esteemed Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik. He also received special ordination from Machon Puah, a center of medical ethics in Israel, and from former Chief Rabbi Mordechai Eliyahu in the field of medical ethics. He received his PhD in general philosophy from Florida Atlantic University. Sample Titles Playing God: Can I Choose my Child? PGD and Genetic Screening – A Torah Perspective My Egg, My Husband, Her Womb, Whose Child? The Ethics of Reproductive Medicine Through the Prism of Jewish Law The Ethics of Reproductive Medicine in Jewish Law: A Torah Perspective End of Life Issues Through the Prism of Halakhah Fertility Procedures The Gift of Life: Donating Organs; A Jewish Perspective Our Health and Well-being: Compassionate and Halakhic Treatment of the Terminally Ill Patient Stem Cell Research – The Definition of Life as seen in Parshat Mishpatim Ethics of War “Is Zionism Diametrically Opposed to Judaism?” Contemporary...

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Dr. Chuck Freilich

Dr. Chuck Freilich served as deputy national security adviser in Israel. Currently, he is an adjunct professor at Stern College for Women and a senior fellow at the Belfer Center at Harvard’s Kennedy School. He recently completed a first-of-its-kind book on Israel’s national security decision making processes (“Zion’s Dilemmas: How Israel Makes National Security Policy,” Cornell Press, 2012), and is working on a new book on Israeli national security strategy. Chuck’s primary areas of expertise are the Middle East, US-Middle East policy and Israeli national security policy. He teaches political science at Harvard, NYU, Columbia and Tel Aviv Universities. Chuck has appeared as a commentator for ABC, CNN, NPR, Al Jezeera and various US and Israeli radio and TV stations. He has been quoted in the NY Times and published numerous articles and op-eds. Chuck was a Senior Analyst at the Israel Ministry of Defense, policy adviser to a cabinet minister, a delegate at the Israeli Mission to the UN and the executive director of two non- profits. He served in the Israel Defense Forces for five years and is a reserve major. Chuck earned his Ph.D. from Columbia University. Born in New York, he immigrated to Israel in his teens. He has two grown children, Lior and Tal. Sample Titles The Iranian Nuclear Threat: Ramifications for the US, Israel and the Region Speaking About the Unspeakable: The US-Israeli Dialogue on the Iranian Nuclear Program “Never Again” – The Iranian Threat and a Mid East Strategic Overview Syria: the Fault Line in the Mideast – Ramifications for the US, Israel and the Region How Events in Syria May Transform the Region Understanding the Syrian Conflagration and Its Ramifications The Arab Spring: Ramifications for the Region, Israel and the US Why the Middle East Erupted – and Why it Will Continue to Do So The Arab Spring – Where Is It Heading Is the Mid East Peace Process Dead? Can the Peace Process Be Saved? Achieving a Two-State Solution Settlements...

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Rabbi Lawrence Hajioff

Rabbi Lawrence Hajioff serves on the Judaic studies faculty of Stern College for Women. Originally from London, England, Rabbi Hajioff graduated with honors in political science from Manchester University. After working for two years for MTV in news production, and winning the national competition ‘Jewish Stand-Up Comedian’ of the Year, Rabbi Hajioff traveled to study in Israel and then Monsey to receive his rabbinical smicha ordination from Yeshiva Ohr Somayach. Rabbi Hajioff has worked extensively with young Jewish drug addicts, and in 2004 received an award from the Town of Ramapo for his work on their behalf. In 2005 Rabbi Hajioff joined the faculty of Stern College for Women at Yeshiva University. In 2006 he received the “Professor of the Year” award in Judaic Studies from the senior year students at Stern. Rabbi Hajioff also works for Birthright Israel in New York as their official Rabbi and educational director. He has been instrumental in implementing programs for Birthright Israel in Manhattan such as the very successful adult bar and bat mitzvah program which some four hundred people have completed so far. He also leads trips to Israel and Poland three times annually for some three hundred participants. Rabbi Hajioff also teaches on the Mechina Introductory Judaic studies program at Stern College. This program includes Shabbatonim on and off campus, and a summer learning program in Israel at the YU campus. He teaches introductory Judaic studies courses, which cover all the foundations of Jewish thought, as well as a lower intermediate level course covering all the Jewish holidays, and an intermediate level course on the Sabbath. He has developed a new course introducing kabbalistic ideas in Jewish thought. Sample Titles The Five Levels of Pleasure Four Misconceptions Jews Have About Judaism Children – Planting and Building; Bringing up Healthy Children in Today’s Technological World. Finding Inspiration in a Hectic World Do Jews Believe in G-d War – What is it Good For? Israel – Whose Land Is It Anyway? Health...

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Rabbi Yaakov Neuburger

Rabbi Yaakov Neuburger is a rosh yeshiva at the Yeshiva Program/Mazer School of Talmudic Studies of Yeshiva University. Rabbi Neuberger is also the spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Abraham in Bergenfield, N.J. Rabbi Neuburger is an authority on issues related to marital relationships and the purity of the Jewish home. He offers his services to help young men train for married life and prepare to build a proper Jewish home built on Jewish law and spirit. From 1986 to 1990, Rabbi Neuburger was spiritual leader of the Jewish community at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine and the Jack D. Weiler Hospital. Rabbi Neuburger received semikha from the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary of Yeshiva University in 1979. He is a graduate of Yeshiva College, and earned an MA in psychology from Columbia University. Sample Titles Copyright in Jewish Law The Role of Parents and Teachers in a Student’s Life Decisions Scholarship and Scholarships: The Hidden Cost of Jewish Education Perspectives on Ramban and Minchat Chinuch Life Threatening Situations on...

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Mrs. CB Neugroschl

Mrs. Chaya Batya (CB) Neugroschl serves as the Head of School at the Samuel H. Wang Yeshiva University High School for Girls (Central). She is an educator with over twenty years of pedagogic, curricular, and administrative experience in both Judaic and General Studies. Before coming to YUHSG, Mrs. Neugroschl served as Assistant Principal and Co-Director of General Studies at SAR High School, where she introduced innovative curricular initiatives and special programming. Previously, Mrs. Neugroschl was the Director of Admissions at Ma’ayanot Yeshiva High School for Girls, where she also taught Jewish History and Philosophy. Mrs. Neugroschl studied for two years at Michlala College for Women in Israel and earned her B.A. at Stern College for Women in 1993. She continued her studies at Yeshiva University’s Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies, with a focus on History of Halakha and Medieval Ashkenaz. She received her M.A. in Near Eastern Languages and Civilizations from Harvard University in 1998. Her Master’s thesis was entitled “The Nexus of Law and Spirituality in Maimonides’ Laws of Charity.” Sample Titles Kabbalat Hatorah as Per Moshe Rabbeinu, Rabbi Akiva and Rav Chiya Simcha Shel Mitzvah: An Ethos of Inclusion Rav Kook: A Religious Zionism of Inclusion Sukkat Shalom: Paradigms for Peace Rabbi Akiva: Master Teacher and Master Student Yom Kippur: When Less is More Yafta Elokim l’Yafet – Vayishkon B’Ohalei Shem: Can we Beautify Judaism with Greek Culture? The Historical Context of Chanukah and the Enemy Within Zman Simchateinu: Understanding the Happiness of Sukkot The Role of Memory in Jewish Thought and Jewish History The Role of Memory in Jewish Law and Jewish History Religious Zionism – A Difficult...

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Rabbi Aaron Rakeffet-Rothkoff

Rabbi Aaron Rakeffet-Rothkoff of Yeshiva University’s Caroline and Joseph S. Gruss Institute in Jerusalem, is a noted scholar, author and teacher. Born in New York City in 1937, Rabbi Rakeffet moved with his family to Israel in 1969, following seven years as spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Ephraim and Maplewood Jewish Center in New Jersey. Rabbi Rakeffet has written many entries for Encyclopedia Judaica, including the one on the Rav, Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik. His two-volume “The Rav: The World of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik” was published in 1999 by KTAV Publishing House. Most recently, Rabbi Rakeffet’s scholarly memoir, “From Washington Avenue to Washington Street”, was published in 2011 by the OU Press in conjunction with Gefen Publishing House. Rabbi Rakeffet is also the author of “Bernard Revel: Builder of American Jewish Orthodoxy,” a biography of Yeshiva’s first president published by the Jewish Publication Society; and “The Silver Era: Rabbi Eliezer Silver and His Generation,” about the life and times of Rabbi Eliezer Silver (1881-1968) and published by Feldheim. Both these works have gone through three editions. In 1997, he published two volumes of “Rakafot Aharon,” a collection of published scholarship in the fields of halakha and Jewish history. The Yeshiva College Alumni Association awarded its annual Bernard Revel Memorial Award in Religion and Religious Education to Rabbi Rakeffet in 1975, the first time the award ceremony took place in Israel. He has taught at Jerusalem’s Torah College for Men, Machon Gold, Michlalah (the Jerusalem College for Women) and Midreshet Moriah, an advanced Torah study program for women....

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Rabbi Dr. Michael Rosensweig

Rabbi Dr. Michael Rosensweig occupies the Nathan and Perel Schupf Chair in Talmud at the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary and is a rosh yeshiva in the Yeshiva Program/Mazer School of Talmudic Studies of Yeshiva University. He has written extensively, contributing to numerous journals of Torah learning. Rabbi Rosensweig received his semikha (rabbinic ordination) from RIETS and was a distinguished fellow of its post-semikha institute, the Gruss Kollel Elyon. He received his BA from Yeshiva College and earned his PhD in medieval Jewish history from the Bernard Revel Graduate School of Jewish Studies while studying under Professor Haym Soloveitchik. Rabbi Rosensweig was also a student of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveichik for seven years, and a student of Rav Aharon Lichtenstein, renowned Talmudic scholar, rosh yeshiva at Yeshivat Har Etzion and director of the Joseph and Caroline Gruss Institute in Jerusalem. In 1997, Rabbi Rosensweig was appointed rosh kollel (dean) of the prestigious Israel Henry Beren Institute for Higher Talmudic Studies (Ha-Machon ha-Gavohah le’Talmud) at RIETS. Rabbi Rosensweig is known for his intricate conceptual approach to Talmud study, as well as his heavy use of Brisker methodology in Talmudic analysis. Sample Titles Judging and Being Judged: Ending Personal and Communal Divisiveness Knowledge, Wisdom, and Understanding: The Guidance of Daas Torah Family: The Cornerstone of Community How to Pick a School for your Child…Values & Priorities in Jewish Education The Role of Personal Initiative in Avodat Hashem: Opportunities and Limits Sefirat ha-Omer: The Bridge Between Pesach and Shavuos The Hashkafic Framework of Social Change The Teshuvas of Aseres Yemei Teshuva and Yom Kippur Repentance As a Response to 9/11 Eretz Yisrael: The Corporate Headquarters of Klal Yisroel Teshuva With Respect To Transgressions and Our Relationship with Hashem The Dual Nature of Rosh Hashanah Teshuvah on Yom Kippur according to the Rambam’s Hilchos Teshuva Reflections on the Conceptual Approach to Talmud Torah Personal Initiative and Creativity in Avodat Hashem The Interface between Yom Kippur & Sukkot: Joy and Awe as Complementary Expressions...

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