blog | about | contact | origins | help
 
All Questions Answered by
Rabbi Joshua Finkelstein

Question: My daughter has a child with a non-Jewish man with whom she has since split. She leads a totally non-Jewish life, although she comes for Seder, etc. Her own father, who died at the age of 24, was not Jewish. I have since married a Jewish man. I truly hope and wish that my daughter ends up with a Jewish man, but given her choice of lifestyle I do not see how this can ever happen. Should I give up hoping and accept that this is a lost cause? She is my only child and I sense that she feels lost and is unhappy. All she wants is to have a family life. My own father was the only father figure in her life, but he died when she was six years old. I blame myself entirely for this situation as I was hardly a good example.
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: What are the differences (if any) between an Orthodox (Traditional) marriage ceremonies and a Progressive (Liberal) marriage ceremony?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: How does the Jewish concept of justice fit in with the Mitzvah of Pidyon Shvuyim (redemption of prisoners/captives)? The Israeli government has in past freed many prisoners who killed Jewish soldiers and civilians in exchange for one or a few soldiers who were captured. Is letting these murderers and terrorists go an aberration of justice, or do the ends justify the means?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: What is the Jewish thought behind revenge, and how does that apply to the recent decision to boycott a certain whiskey distiller is Scotland because they boycotted Israeli products? "You boycott us, we boycott you" is not necessarily a Jewish response.
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: I am reading my kids the biography of Benjamin Franklin and am completely in awe of his accomplishments and morality; He would write down his flaws at the end of every day. Can you give me names of any Jewish role models in the last 400 years with similar credentials to share with my kids as well?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: I have two boys close in age who are constantly fighting. I know this is normal, but I have tried everything. The normal rewards and punishments don't work. I was wondering if there were any Jewish-values-based approach to sibling rivalry that I might try as a parent, or that I might try to tell the boys; Perhaps something "Divine" will have more of an effect....
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: I am completely disgusted with Israelís politicians behaving so self-interestedly. But I am afraid to say anything about it in conversations with non-Jews for fear of further tarring Israel with a bad image. How open can I be in political conversations about Israel, and does it matter who I am speaking to?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: Do you think a new Canaanite Movement, a la Yonatan Ratosh, could be appropriate for our times? Why not?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: Can you explain what is written in these new (Orthodox and other) marriage ďprenupsĒ that more and more young religious people seem to be signing? Is this in line with Jewish law? Is it appropriate to contemplate the end of the marriage before it even begins in Jewish thought?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: A more religious neighbor does not allow her housekeeper of 5 years to turn on her stove when cooking for her; she says it breaks some law of non-Jews cooking for Jews. Can you possibly explain this very offensive rule? Is my neighbor correct?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: What does the Torah say about personal injury?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: A lotís been made of our constant interaction with information. Does Judaism have anything to say about powering down from computers, cell phones and the like?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: Whatís the tradition on the correct order of placing the Chanukah candles in the menorah and then lighting them in the reverse order?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: President Obama's administration was talking about possibly needing to reduce Social Security benefits and raise the retirement age to combat the deficit. What does the Jewish faith say about taking care of our society's elderly?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: In the past few decades, there have been more concerns about over-population and the risks it brings to the environment and people. When I raised such a concern to a friend (also Jewish) of mine, he accused me of not trusting in G-d. My concern is that having too many children reduces the standard of living for everyone and ruins the gifts G-d has given us. Where is the balance between "be fruitful and multiply" and protecting our world as well as the people in it? Does adoption fulfill the mitzvah of multiplying?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

Question: People generally think their sins are committed against others and ask for forgiveness. This forgiveness does not always enable one to forgive themselves. How does one deal with forgiveness of yourself? And the guilt that may come along with doing or not doing that?
Click here to view all of the answers for this question.

LATEST BLOGS  view all blog entries

National Despair

Posted on 07/27/2017 by Rabbi Ben Hecht in Holidays
During these Three Weeks which we are presently experiencing on the Jewish calendar, we are not just marking the historical...

Intermarriage: The Beginning of the End

Posted on 07/23/2017 by Moshe Daniel Levine in Beliefs and Practices
Believe me, I completely understand why a Jewish community would want to do away with the ethnocentric notion of Jewish...

You Donít Know What You've Got ĎTil Itís Gone

Posted on 07/21/2017 by Rivkah Lambert Adler in Beliefs and Practices
Every night, in my dreams, I walk around like an ordinary person. Then I awaken and I struggle to get up off the makeshift...

Moving On From Destruction

Posted on 07/18/2017 by Moshe Daniel Levine in Holidays
They say that history is written by the winners. This was the sentiment that I felt exactly two years ago when I was sitting...

Criticize with Kindness

Posted on 07/09/2017 by Rabbi Elan Adler in Beliefs and Practices
“There’s always a nice and decent way to say something.” This is a lesson we repeated to our girls,...

American Jew or Jewish American?

Posted on 07/06/2017 by Moshe Daniel Levine in Beliefs and Practices
Growing up, there was always the looming question of whether or not one was an American Jew or a Jewish American. The...
JVO Panel  of Scholars
           
 
NOW ADD JVO CONTENT TO
YOUR WEBSITE A FREE SERVICE
 
Click here for instructions to embed the
JVO "JEW Q's" widget on your website.
 
Jewish Values Online | email: info@jewishvaluesonline.org

Home | Search For Answers | Ask A Question | About | Contact Us | OriginsUseful Links | Blog | Help | Site Map

Copyright 2014 all rights reserved. Jewish Values Online
 
N O T I C E
THE VIEWS EXPRESSED IN ANSWERS PROVIDED HEREIN ARE THOSE OF THE INDIVIDUAL JVO PANEL MEMBERS, AND DO NOT
NECESSARILY REFLECT OR REPRESENT THE VIEWS OF THE ORTHODOX, CONSERVATIVE OR REFORM MOVEMENTS, RESPECTIVELY.