Limmud

Mandela and me: journalist's insights into the anti-apartheid struggle

By Daniel Easterman, December 25, 2013

Benjamin Pogrund, the former deputy editor of the Rand Daily Mail during the apartheid era, has heavily criticised the Jewish community for honouring Percy Yutar, the first Jewish Attorney General in South Africa and the man responsible for prosecuting Nelson Mandela.

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Take your Talmud with a shot of tequila

By Simon Rocker, December 25, 2013

It must have been the hottest class at the conference - because it came with a fiery orange cocktail of tequila, carrot juice and hot tabasco sauce.

When Rachel Kobrin, a Conservative rabbi from Austin, Texas, ran a late-night Talmud class at Limmud this week, she decided to spice things up a bit by serving drinks through the proceedings.

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The priest who is spending Christmas at Limmud

By Simon Rocker, December 25, 2013

The Reverend Patrick Morrow will not be eating turkey or brandy-soaked plum pudding for Christmas lunch. He is more likely to make do with a snatched sandwich and a cup of soup.

The Anglican priest, who is the programme manager of the Council of Christians and Jews, has instead decided to remain at the Limmud conference in Warwick, where he has spent the previous three days.

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Teach your children to make aliyah, MK urges

By Simon Rocker, December 24, 2013

An Israeli MK called for higher aliyah from Western countries at the Limmud conference today.

American-born Rabbi Dov Lipman, who entered the Knesset earlier this year as a member of Yair Lapid’s new Yesh Atid party, said: “I am not a person who says that every single person should drop everything and move… But I do believe we should be raising our children to move to Israel.”

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Video: Sharansky gives Jewish Agency award to Michael Sherbourne

By Daniel Easterman, December 24, 2013
In one of the conference’s most moving moments so far, Natan Sharansky, Chairman of the Jewish Agency awarded 96 year old Michael Sherbourne with a special plaque for his activism on behalf of Soviet Jews during the 1970s and 1980s.

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Why walk when you can waltz?

By Charlotte Oliver, December 24, 2013

In the last two days, I have seen things I will never un-see.

I have witnessed a raucous group of Israelis “get down” at a silent disco rave…in the middle of the conference foyer.

Imagine the scene: a cluster of headphone-wearing jitterbugsters waving their arms and legs in muted hysteria, while those sitting and chatting around them barely blinked an eye.

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Video Update: Sharansky pays moving tribute to UK man who aided refusniks

By Daniel Easterman, December 24, 2013

In one of the conference's most moving moments so far, Natan Sharansky, chairman of the Jewish Agency, awarded 96-year-old Michael Sherbourne with a special plaque for his activism on behalf of Soviet Jews during the 1970s and 1980s.

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Dating in the faith: still a struggle

By Charlotte Oliver, December 24, 2013

Would you rather be alone than marry someone who is not Jewish?

This was one of the divisive questions posed to a 50-strong audience during Limmud’s “Jewish dating” session on Tuesday.

Journalist Dina Rickman opened the debate by describing her own struggles between pleasing her desires and those of the community around her.

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The Chief's Limmud triumph

By Simon Rocker, December 24, 2013

When Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis announced his decision to go to Limmud, he might have expected the odd murmur of disapproval to his right.

But he must have been taken aback by the stridency of the resulting Charedi attack on Limmud, a clear attempt to dissuade his rabbinate from accompanying him there.

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Why I was blindfolded

By Simon Rocker, December 24, 2013

According to rabbinic lore, the giving of the Ten Commandments was almost fatal. The voice of God who uttered the first two was so powerful that it killed the Israelites and they had to be resurrected (after which, understandably, Moses took over).

So imagine my apprehension when I attended a session which sought to recreate the receiving of the Ten Commandments.

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