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Collage of Purim foods

Purim is coming! Whether you’re looking for a creative gift to include in some mishloach manot or you’re looking to treat yourself, we’ve got you covered. Take your pick between dairy dough and pareve dough, or try our gluten-free dough, then begin to plan the rest of your holiday...

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Directional signs in Old Havana Cuba, including one to a synagogue

In early January, I joined 25 congregants, friends, and clergy on a Jewish mission to Cuba. Though I had done my homework, I was not prepared for what I would find there and how the experience would affect my self-perception as a Jew.

Our Cuban guide, a beautiful, well-dressed woman in her early 40s, spoke with pride about her country and the Revolution, which she said stood for progress. Cuba’s constitution, she explained, calls for an atheist society, not mentioning that in 1992 the constitution was changed to allow for religious freedom. She said churches and temples can...

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Closeup of a mans hand with his index finger running across a Braille page

Louis Braille was born in Coupvray, France, in 1809. When he was 3 years old, he accidentally poked himself in the eye with his dad's awl and became blind. At age 12, he started playing around with an embossed alphabet that had been used by the military to exchange messages in the dark, and by the time he was 15, he had created what we call braille today.

In his short 43 years, Louis Braille brought literacy to a group of people who, until then, could only read and write using raised print letters – which posed practical challenges. The six-dot code Louis Braille created is simple...

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elephant

Due to unexpected demand, registration for the Intro to Judaism Online classes has been filled and is now closed. Please contact the coordinator, Frieda Hershman Huberman fhuberman@urj.org to get on the wait list/learn about more opportunities that will be available soon.

I imagine that we all have heard the story of a group of blindfolded men and women who, standing around an elephant, were asked to describe the animal based only on their sense of touch. Each person’s perception of the elephant varied widely from the others, based entirely on...

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Thumbs up toward the sky

Like any child, growing up I relied on the support of my parents. Due to my severe learning disabilities, this support was even more essential. Although I was reading at age 4 and showed a propensity toward math, teachers were concerned about me advancing grades in school because of my handwriting – which we later learned was a direct result of my visual motor skills disability.

I went to a Jewish day school that cared deeply about my needs and my education, but as a small school without expertise in the area, was not able to meet these needs. Fortunately, my parents were able to...

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