A Distant Dream, an historical novel, is set against the vivid backdrop of Medieval Europe and the religious hostility that was its hallmark. In the year 1290, England's twelve thousand Jews became... More > the continent's first community to face expulsion. Despite oppressive and unfair taxes and restrictive living conditions, the Jews had somehow managed to survive and even prosper. Now they were to be forced to abandon their homes and belongings. Where should the uprooted families go? Would any other Christian nations welcome them? Would they be allowed to remain in any one place for more than a few years?
Perhaps some tired and idealistic English Jew dreamed of cutting his ancient ties with Europe altogether. Perhaps he spoke to others around him and together, they make plans. Perhaps there were some who dared to set out for some new land where they could live their lives as Jews. Where they could live undisturbed by the outside world...< Less
"Oil and Water" is set nearly a century after the building of Jerusalem's Second Temple. Alexander the Great, the Greek conqueror, is dead and his empire is split; its Middle Eastern... More > division contested by the Ptolemies of Egypt and the Syrian Seleucids. Tens of thousands of Jews, taken to Egypt as slaves some decades before, have only recently been freed. Some of these Jews, though deeply changed by their difficult experiences, sought to return to a homeland many of them had never seen...a homeland which might not even want them back.
"Oil and Water," an historical novel, explores ancient political movements and fundamental struggles over power, glory and, for some, over truth. The book also probes one young man's very personal struggle to choose between idealism and assimilation. Between his great thirst to drink from the waters of the Torah and the pain and loneliness of cultural alienation.< Less
"Working With Torah" was written for people possessing two characteristics: the desire to excel in all aspects of their Torah lives and the need to find a productive livelihood. Both these... More > goals lie within reach since the Torah has, through the Talmud and its commentaries, provided us with all the guidelines, wisdom and advice necessary to bring success closer.
"Working With Torah" presents these Torah sources to help you apply them to today's complex and perilous employment environment.< Less
The Torah has lots to say about economic health. "Accountable" contains at least some of that wisdom, along with practical guidance and discussions of some key related Torah principles.... More >
"Accountable" (along with my "Working with Torah - a guide to employment") tries to imagine what, in economic terms, the ideal Torah family and community would look like. Understanding and keeping this vision firmly in mind, a Jew can confidently do his share towards living a responsible and secure life.< Less
The great prophets gave flesh to the bones of The Law. They showed us that, beyond simply doing what is right, we should aspire to greatness. They showed us how our daily interactions with elements... More > of the world around us - whether human, animal or the very soil beneath our feet - must be infused with a thirst for justice and a love for all creation. But the principles and attitudes to which they hint - ever at risk of becoming lost beneath the sheer weight of their breadth and subtlety - are clarified and organized by the various collections of midrash.
While remaining passionately loyal to traditional Jewish thinking, this book offers new thoughts about specific - and often well known - midrashic passages, along with more general guidance.
Now it's time to learn...< Less
Original essays on key issues from the Book of Samuel.
Why did our first kings need prophecy? Can we see the real David through the muddle of individual perspectives with which we're presented? Who... More > took responsibility for the disastrous destruction of Nov? What did Eli's sons really do wrong?
Along the way, we'll explore some tools that can help guide us through the complexity of Torah study.
When can one idea found somewhere in Torah literature be applied to enhance our understanding of another? When does one of two seemingly unconnected Torah-events in fact change our understanding of the other? How, in other words, can we be more certain that we really understand what we're reading?< Less
Essays and CAD-generated images on the historical and religious significance of Jerusalem's Temple (the "Bais Hamikdash"). What was the Temple meant to accomplish? What made it so central... More > to Jewish culture that, thousands of years since its loss, the Mikdash still looms large?
The insights into the Temple's structure and history you will find in "Mikdash" should help answer those questions, or at least get you started on your own course of study.< Less
Essays on key themes from the book of Isaiah.
"Social Injustice: When Leadership Fails"
"Jews in a Non-Jewish World"
"Isaiah and the Messianic Era"
Also... More > includes a chapter-by-chapter summary and a thematic index of Isaiah.
The world at large sings the praises of the beauty and profundity of Isaiah's great teachings. Jewish tradition assigns the prophet's words very great authority. Primary Torah sources draw on his wisdom to illuminate the most sensitive and critical matters.
But understanding the book is certainly not easy. Even identifying it's themes requires making significant and difficult procedural choices. With which interpretation of Isaiah should we work? Many - if not most - passages are complex and ambiguous enough to allow for multiple translations...
What we need is a comprehensive methodology. The essays in "Isaiah Speaks" are the product of one such system.< Less
How could a thinking person not ask questions about life's big issues like faith and suffering? This book (along with the web site on which it's based) is an attempt to open up the discussion for... More > anyone who feels the need to participate. If you're desperate to discover or deepen your relationship with the God of the Torah, you're among friends. This project is guided by the belief that there's no single approach that will satisfy everyone, but that everyone - if he searches honestly and diligently - can find great satisfaction under the broader umbrella of Torah. We also believe that many of these issues don't lend themselves to quick and easy, black and white solutions. As often as not, things really aren't simple...< Less
A Distant Dream by Levi Kaufman, a historical novel, is set against the vivid backdrop of Medieval Europe and the religious hostility that was its hallmark. In the year 1290, England’s twelve... More > thousand Jews became the continent’s first community to face expulsion. Despite oppressive and unfair taxes and restrictive living conditions, the Jews had somehow managed to survive and even prosper. Now they were to be forced to abandon their homes and belongings.
Where should the uprooted families go? Would any other Christian nations welcome them? Would they be allowed to remain in any one place for more than a few years?
Perhaps some tired and idealistic English Jew dreamed of breaking away from Europe and the ever-deepening anguish of his exiled people. Perhaps he spoke to others around him and, together, they make plans. Perhaps there were some who dared to set out for some new land where they could live their lives as Jews. Where they could live undisturbed by the outside world…
Marbitz Media< Less