Unpacking Niddah

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by Rabbi Miriam-Simma Walfish Niddah is the practice of abstaining from sexual intimacy around the time of menstruation. When contemplating the rabbinic laws surrounding menstruation, it can be easy to wonder: Why is there a whole area of Jewish law devoted to the intricacies of determining the beginning and end of women’s menstrual cycles? At times, […]

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The Monthly Mitzvah

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Originally posted in March 2017 by Anonymous As a Jewish woman living a traditional halachic life (governed by Jewish law), I am often faced with questions from myself and others regarding my religious choices. One question that will likely always come up is that of the place of women in halachic Judaism. In modern-day Orthodoxy, […]

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Lessons from Beyond the Huppah: An In-Depth Review

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Originally posted on January 18, 2017 by Cantor Sarah Bolts and Michael Chernicoff Sarah: I honestly didn’t know what to expect from a pre-marriage class. I grew up in the Orthodox community, where pre-marriage classes came in the form of “kallah (bride) classes” in which a bride would learn about the laws of niddah (regular separation […]

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My New Jewish Wedding Then

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by Lisa Berman, Mikveh and Education Director December 16, 1990, our wedding day, was the culmination of some very speedy planning. My then-boyfriend Jeff and I, living 200 miles apart for two years, waited until we knew we could both be employed in the same city to get engaged. We managed the trifecta of life […]

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Blessing My Marriage in the Mikveh

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by Laura Bishop I did not have a traditional Jewish wedding. In another life, where I married another man, I would have loved to have been under the chuppah (wedding canopy), wrapped in a tallis (prayer shawl), as the rabbi blessed us, our union, and consecrated our marriage under the laws of Moses and Israel. […]

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Creating the World We Want to See

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by Carrie Bornstein Last week, Carrie shared these words as she was honored at Mayyim Hayyim’s spring benefit, Soul/Life/Cycle: My first job interview at Mayyim Hayyim was exactly ten years ago this Thursday; less than 48 hours before Eliana was born. At the time I couldn’t decide how I felt about doing a 9th month […]

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The Monthly Mitzvah

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by Anonymous As a Jewish woman living a traditional halachic life (governed by Jewish law), I am often faced with questions from myself and others regarding my religious choices. One question that will likely always come up is that of the place of women in halachic Judaism. In modern-day Orthodoxy, the synagogue has become the focus […]

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Making a Marriage: Inside Beyond the Huppah

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As Beyond the Huppah 2017 approaches, we are reminded of these unique insights written and adapted by educator Judy Elkin. Imagine it. Ten couples sitting around a table, munching on Terra Chips, hummus and carrots, mixed nuts, and Peanut M&M’s; some soon-to-be married, some already married, in their late 20’s and older, gay and straight, […]

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Lessons from Beyond the Huppah: An In-Depth Review

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by Sarah Bolts and Michael Chernicoff, Beyond the Huppah Participants fall 2015  Sarah: I honestly didn’t know what to expect from a pre-marriage class. I grew up in the Orthodox community, where pre-marriage classes came in the form of “kallah (bride) classes” in which a bride would learn about the laws of niddah (regular separation of […]

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Many Visits Later, Finally My First Immersion

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by Rachel Bernstein I had been preparing for my first immersion for eight years. I didn’t know exactly when it would be, but I could guess why it would be. The first eight times I had visited Mayyim Hayyim, I went in my capacity as Academic Adviser for the Hadassah-Brandeis Institute summer internship. I brought […]

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Reflections From “Beyond the Huppah”

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by David Zenaty and Leeza Negelev David and Leeza, two former participants of the program, who were recently married, discuss their experience at Beyond the Huppah: Creating the Jewish Marriage You Want, led by Judy Elkin, PCC. Mayyim Hayyim’s seminar for engaged and newly married couples.    DAVID: Hey, Leeza. I thought it would be interesting to create […]

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