Congregation Beth El–Keser Israel

85 Harrison Street, New Haven, CT 06515-1724 | P: 203.389.2108 | office@beki.org

Our banner is based on BEKI’s stained glass, designed in 2008 by Cynthia Beth Rubin. For information on this and other of Cynthia’s work, go to: <a href="http://www.cbrubin.net" target="_blank">www.cbrubin.net</a>. Artisan Fabrication by JC Glass of Branford, CT

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  • Wild Indians & Wicked Witches
    https://www.beki.org/dvartorah/wild-indians-wicked-witches/

    …jest. And those ashtray jokes are just meant as jokes. Gay & Lesbian people, too, are still the object of jest and derision. Whether one views homosexuality as merely an alternative lifestyle, as a manifestation of mental illness or as a grave and willful sin, it is wrong to joke about it or vilify Gays and Lesbians. To do so violates numerous commandments, including the prohibitions against lashon hara (group slander), hatred, incitement to hatre…

  • The Miracle of Hanuka
    https://www.beki.org/dvartorah/the-miracle-of-hanuka/

    …ome in the United States: 2001, U.S. Government Printing Office, Washington, DC, 2002.) Even more: On the global level, I am in the top 1%. So when I say that the rich should pay, I am including myself. When we share our spiritual, financial and other blessings with others and consequently see their Hanuka lights — or their Holiday Candles — glowing in their windows, then we are truly fulfilling the mandate of Hanuka: Pirsuma Nesa, Proclaiming the…

  • Domestic Violence in Classical Halakhic Sources
    https://www.beki.org/dvartorah/domestic-violence-in-classical-halakhic-sources/

    …ory of separation without divorce, forced divorce, court-sanctioned torture, use of non-Jews as agents of the court, and women owning real estate completely independent of their husbands’ control, among other phenomena. All of the major codes of halakha deal with legal principles that jurists apply to this specific type of crime. Among the major sources on this issue are a series of responsa by Rabbi Shlomo ben Avraham Adret (Rashba, c.1235 – c.13…

  • Sex Reassignment Surgery and Deuteronomy 23:2 (23:1)
    https://www.beki.org/dvartorah/sex-reassignment-surgery-and-deuteronomy-232-231/

    …on-in-law. Saul then gave him his daughter Michal in marriage” (I Samuel 18:27, NJPS). Although the verse names only the foreskin, one might suppose that in the context of collecting their war trophies, David and his officers were not careful to take only the part specified. The Talmudic discussion suggests that the foreskins were of symbolic, but not monetary, value (B Sanh. 19b). Another Talmudic discussion suggests that Tamar reduced or removed…

  • Parashat BeHar: My Jubilee
    https://www.beki.org/dvartorah/parashat-behar-my-jubilee/

    …ronmental aspect of the Jubilee observance comes into play. In Leviticus 25:23, the Torah teaches us that we must not permanently alienate the land, for the land is not ours, but God’s: But the land must not be sold beyond reclaim, for the land is Mine; you are but strangers resident with Me. We do not hold unlimited ownership rights over land. We are God’s tenants. And like all tenants, we have an obligation to the Landlord to care for the land a…

  • Sweetening the Bitter Water: Parashat Naso 5764
    https://www.beki.org/dvartorah/sweetening-the-bitter-water-parashat-naso-5764/

    …e democratic principle of Torah law: It is a mitzva to vote. Deuteronomy 16:18: You shall appoint for yourselves judges and officers for your tribes, in all the jurisdiction which the Lord your God has given you, and they shall govern the people with due justice. Equality Before the Law The mitzva of civil rights. Leviticus 24:22: You shall have one standard of law for the alien and the citizen alike: for I am the Lord your God. Protection against…

  • Parashat Toldot 5766
    https://www.beki.org/dvartorah/parashat-toldot-5766/

    …ob conning Esau into selling his birthright for a pot of lentil stew; Isaac, because of a famine, going to Gerar where Abimelech was king of the Philistines; Isaac telling the locals of Gerar that Rebekah is his sister, so that they won’t kill him in order to take her; later when the King sees Isaac fondling Rebekah, the King explodes, berates Isaac for what might have happened if he or one of his people had taken Rebekah, Abimelech warns his peop…

  • Accessibility
    https://www.beki.org/our-community/accessibility/

    …EKI Sisterhood, The Buckman Family and the Sachs Family. See “It’s a Mitzva, or, Yes We Can!,” Bulletin May 2013, p. 13. The drinking fountain in the classroom wing is not readily accessible to people using wheelchairs. The main building is carpeted with low-pile or no-pile carpet, including the Rosenkrantz Library and the George G. Posener Daily Chapel – Beit Midrash. The classroom building is not carpeted. The linoleum floor is kept clean. The l…

  • Cross Dressing and Deuteronomy 22:5
    https://www.beki.org/dvartorah/crossdressing/

    …wish people. In its discussion of the laws of the festival of Purim (OH 696:8), the Code says men and women may cross dress on Purim because it is for the purpose of gaity (simha), not for adultery. Given the context, there is no danger that such cross-dressing will lead to heterosexual adultery. The danger of “cross-dressing,” according to the analysis followed here by Rashi and the Shulhan Arukh, is that it might allow men to enter women’s group…

  • Directions to the Cemeteries
    https://www.beki.org/about/directions-to-the-cemeteries/

    …e Cemetery Association use the synagogue street address: 85 Harrison Street, New Haven, CT 06515-1724. Beth El Memorial Park (Cemetery) View Larger Map Directions from Congregation Beth El–Keser Israel From Harrison Street at corner of Whalley Avenue (in front of BEKI), turn left onto Whalley Avenue (east, toward downtown New Haven). Turn LEFT at Fitch Street traffic light (the fourth left), heading north on Fitch (Route 10). Turn RIGHT at Arch St…