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Rebekah, pregnant Twin sons struggle inside her "Why do I exist?"   Soon enough, she knows God says Jacob will prevail Mom must make it so     As she feels her unborn sons fighting in her womb, Rebekah wonders "If this is so, why do I exist?" (Genesis 25:22). God says she'll give birth to two nations, and "the elder [Esau] shall serve the younger [Jacob]." (Genesis 25:23). But Esau is the favorite of his father Isaac (Genesis 25:28). So mom takes matters into her own hands, making sure that Jacob receives his father's blessing. (Genesis 27)

Happy Thanksgiving, hooray, hooray, hooray! Aren't you glad you're not a turkey on this Thanksgiving Day...

These words by Jewish musician Debbie Friedman start to stick in my head this time of year. It is a silly child's song, but one that leads me to wonder; is Thanksgiving a Jewish holiday?

My first inclination is to say no, it is an American holiday (Thanksgiving is also celebrated in Canada, on the second Monday of October). Nearly everyone celebrates it. Many of us have fond memories of time spent with family indulging in a glorious feast - turkey, mashed potatoes,...

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Today, we remember:

Brittany Stergis, shot dead in her car in Cleveland, OH, on December 5, 2013.

Kanday Hall, murdered and found in a field, in Baltimore, MD, on June 3, 2014.

Aniya Oarker shot in the head in East Hollywood, CA, on October 3, 2014.

Today, we remember. We remember these three individuals who were murdered in anti-transgender violence. And we...

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Ah, fall! In many parts of the country, the temperature has dropped, the leaves have turned shades of red, orange and yellow and are falling off the trees. It's time for Thanksgiving in the. For most Americans, the word "Thanksgiving" evokes powerful sensory images: the smell of roasting turkey over the course of the afternoon; the taste of savory pumpkin pie; the sounds of laughter and excitement; the feelings of love and happiness as family members gather together from near and far to be together. Food, family, fun and thanks - it has all the qualities that make it a perfect holiday for...

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Growing up the child of a Jew-by-choice, everything about Judaism was a choice for us. For my mother, Judaism was a gift. She felt very proud to count herself among the Jewish people. She felt blessed to have the opportunity to do Jewish things. And she felt great joy in being able to give me Jewish experiences. To this day, she calls Jewish overnight camp “the best investment I ever made.”

In our home, I don’t ever remember hearing the words “have to” when it came to Judaism. I only remember hearing “...

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