115 episodes

Helping you find meaning in life through the exploration of Jewish thought and ideas.

18Forty Podcast 18Forty

    • Religion & Spirituality
    • 4.8 • 372 Ratings

Helping you find meaning in life through the exploration of Jewish thought and ideas.

    Yosef Bronstein: Rav Tzadok & Rav Kook on Jewish History [Origins of Judaism 5/6]

    Yosef Bronstein: Rav Tzadok & Rav Kook on Jewish History [Origins of Judaism 5/6]

    In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Rabbi Dr. Yosef Bronstein. A deep thinker with scholarship and experience in many areas of Jewish thought, Yosef has a PhD in Talmud, an upcoming book on the Lubavitcher Rebbe, work editing at the Reshimos Shiurim on Kiddushin of Rabbi Joseph B. Soleveitchik, and countless lectures, classes, and students on Talmud, mysticism, and Jewish philosophy. Yosef joins us to talk about R. Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook, whose thought on the history of halacha, the relationship between human and God, and the ascending evolution of Jewish thought are deeply fascinating. How do we make sense of change in our religious systems and laws, and the development of our traditions? Listen now to find out.

    In this interview, we discuss:

    - How does Rav Kook think about change in Jewish life and law from the Temple times until today?
    - How can we work through dissonance between our individual moral sensitivities and the halacha?
    - Can and should our relationship to Jewish people and law change over time?

    Yosef Bronstein received rabbinic ordination and a PhD in Talmudic Studies from Yeshiva University. He currently teaches halacha and Jewish philosophy at Michlelet Mevaseret Yerushalayim (MMY) and online for Yeshiva University’s Isaac Breuer College. Rabbi Dr. Bronstein is a beloved lecturer, writer, and teacher on topics of Jewish thought, and his book, Engaging the Essence: The Philosophy of the Lubavitcher Rebbe is forthcoming.

    Interview starts at 25:52

    Resources:

    “To the Process of Ideas in in Israel” (LeMehalech HaEideot BaYisrael) by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook
    Jewish Thought: A Process, Not a Text by David Bashevkin
    B’Rogez Rachem Tizkor by Dovid Bashevkin
    Iggrot HaRav Kook - Letter #90 by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook
    Moreh L’Nevuchei HaDor by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook
    ״Derech HaTechiyah״ in Ma’amarei Ha’Reiyah by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook
    “Chacham Adif M’Navi” in Orot by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook
    Introduction to Ein Ayah by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook
    ״Tzimaon L’Keil Chai״ in Orot by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook
    When God Becomes History: Historical Essays of Rabbi Abraham Isaac Hakohen Kook by Betzalel Naor
    Progressive Derash and Retrospective Peshat: Nonhalakhic Considerations in Talmud Torah by Rabbi Dr. Yaakov Elman
    Mevakshei Panekha: Sichot im Ha-Rav Aharon Lichtenstein, In Quest of Your Presence -- Conversations with Rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein by Chaim Sabato

    • 1 hr 31 min
    Yonatan Adler: What Archeologists Find [Origins of Judaism 4/6]

    Yonatan Adler: What Archeologists Find [Origins of Judaism 4/6]

    In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Dr. Yonatan Adler about the intersection of halacha and archaeology.

    Yonatan Adler is a professor of archaeology at Ariel University in Samaria where he teaches about halacha in early Judaism as we see it through the lens of archeology.

    - Why do we view the past in light of the present and not the present in light of the past?
    - What does archeology tell us about the origins of the Jewish People?
    - Did ancient everyday Jews keep the Torah?

    Tune in to hear a conversation on the blueprint of creation, the invention of the term 'Judaism', and more.

    Interview begins at 23:15

    References:

    Rav Ari Waxman on Twitter
    Tradition Magazine
    “Hazon Ish on Textual Criticism and Halakhah” by Tzvi A. Yehuda
    18Forty - “Andrew Solomon: Far From the Tree”
    “Hazon Ish on Textual Criticism and Halakhah - A Rejoinder” by Shnayer Leiman
    Exodus 23:2
    “The Role of Manuscripts in Halakhic Decision-Making: Hazon Ish, his Precursors and Contemporaries” by Moshe Bleich
    Iggrot HaRav Kook - Letter #423 by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak HaKohen Kook
    The Origins of Judaism by Yonatan Adler
    Jurassic Park
    Judaism: The Genealogy of a Modern Notion by Daniel Boyarin
    “This is Water” by David Foster Wallace
    Greek and Latin Authors on Jews and Judaism by Menahem Stern
    The New Testament
    Josephus: The Complete Works by Flavius Josephus
    Book of Leviticus
    The Zohar 2:161b:1
    The Jewish War by Flavius Josephus
    “The Archaeology of Purity: Archaeological Evidence for the Observance of Ritual Purity in Ereẓ-Israel from the Hasmonean Period until the End of the Talmudic Era (164 BCE – 400 CE)" by Yonatan Adler
    Drashos Beis Yishai - Essay #23 by Shlomo Fisher
    18Forty - “Tova Ganzel: The Judaism of the Prophets & the People”
    Psalms 73

    • 1 hr 18 min
    Tova Ganzel: The Judaism of the Prophets & the People [Origins of Judaism 3/6]

    Tova Ganzel: The Judaism of the Prophets & the People [Origins of Judaism 3/6]

    In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Dr. Tova Ganzel about biblical Judaism, and the shift of rabbinic authority over time. 

    Tova Ganzel is a professor of Judaics at Bar Ilan University. In our discussion with her, we discuss the evolution of mitzvah observance from biblical times and the transmission of authority within Judaism. 

    - Who gives rabbis their authority? 
    - How did Jewish law evolve during the Second Temple Period? 
    - What did the prophets do to popularize Judaism? 

    Tune in to hear a conversation on authoritative figures, authoritative texts, and accepting authority . 

    Interview begins at 15:09

    Tova Ganzel is a Senior Lecturer at the Multidisciplinary Department of Jewish Studies at the Bar-Ilan University and Head of the Cramim Jewish Studies Honors Program. Tova was the director of the Midrasha – Institute for Advanced Torah Studies at Bar-Ilan University and is a certified women’s halakhic advisor (yo’etzet halakha). She holds a Ph.D. in Bible from Bar- Ilan and is a renowned figure in the world of Jewish education for women. Her work is widely published, and she is the recipient of numerous academic awards. She lives in Jerusalem with her husband and family.

    References:

    The Jewish Self by Jeremy Kagan
    Tractate Yoma 69b
    Tractate Sanhedrin 64a
    Book of Nechemiah 
    Pachad Yitzchak - “Letter #19” by Rav Yitzchak Hutner 
    "I Am The Least Interesting Person In My Family" - Alex Edelman Performs Stand-Up on The Late Show
    Seder Olam Rabbah 30 by Rav Eliyahu of Vilna
    Ezekiel: From Destruction to Restoration by Tova Ganzel
    Shir HaShrim Rabbah 5:5
    Book of Ezra
    Megillat Esther
    Megillat Taanit
    Yechezkel 1
    Parshat Yitro
    Shulchan Aruch by Rabbi Yosef Karo
    Pninei Halacha by HaRav Eliezer Melamed
    Kitzur Shulchan Aruch by Rav Shlomo Ganzfried 
    Mekor Chaim HaShalem by Rabbi Chaim David HaLevi
    Mishna Berurah by Rabbi Yisrael Meir Kagan
    Yirmiyahu 17:21
    ״יש צורות רבות ומגוונות לייצר דיון הלכתי, תקיפה היא לא אחת מהן״ by Tova Ganzel
    “Responsa: The Law as Seen By Rabbis for 1,000 Years" by Israel L. Shenker
    Malachi 3:22-24
    Megillot Midbar Yehuda - HaChiburim HaIvriim by Elisha Kimron
    Megillot in Qumran by Menahem Kister
    From Qumran to the Tannaic Time by Vered Noam
    The Bar Kokhba Revolt - The Archaeological Evidence by Hanan Eshel and Boaz Zissu
    Maccabees I & II
    Book of Jubilees
    Mishna Torah, Hilchot Mamarim by Maimonides
    The 13 Principles of Torah Elucidation by Rav Yishmael
    Kovetz Shiurim: Divrei Sofrim by Rav Elchanan
    Drashos Beis Yishai 15 by Rav Shlomo Fisher

    • 1 hr 28 min
    Lawrence Schiffman: The World of Early Judaism [Origins of Judaism 2/6]

    Lawrence Schiffman: The World of Early Judaism [Origins of Judaism 2/6]

    In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to Professor Lawrence Schiffman about Second Temple and Rabbinic Judaism.

    Lawrence Schiffman is a professor at New York University, where he lectures on topics such as the Dead Sea Scrolls, Midrashei Halacha, and Second Temple Judasim. He joins us today to discuss the evolution from early Judaism to modern observance, as well as the outcomes of superimposing ancient Judaism onto our present day understandings.

    - Who is a “common Jew”?

    - Is Jewish disunity as modern as we think it is?

    - Why would one cling to modern Judaism despite its evolution over history?

    Tune in to hear a conversation on the development of Judaism and how faith must be the answer when history fails us.

    Interview begins at 23:48

    Lawrence Schiffman is a professor of Hebrew and Judaic Studies at New York University and Director of the Global Institute for Advanced Research in Jewish Studies. Dr. Schiffman is a specialist in the Dead Sea Scrolls, Judaism in Late Antiquity, the history of halacha, and Talmud. He has served as Vice Provost for Undergraduate Education and Professor of Judaic Studies at Yeshiva University. Dr. Schiffman was featured in the PBS Nova series documentary, Secrets of the Dead Sea Scrolls, and several other documentaries. Dr. Schiffman’s book, From Text to Tradition, is a journey through the history of the emergence of rabbinic Judaism in the Second Temple era. Dr. Schiffman joins us to talk about the world of Early Judaism.

    References:

    “The Rambam’s Introduction to the Mishna” by Maimonides
    Zakhor: Jewish History And Jewish Memory by Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi
    The Formation of the Talmud: Scholarship and Politics in Yitzhak Isaac Halevy's Dorot HaRishonim by Dr. Ari Bergmann
    Dorot HaRishonim by Rav Yitzhak Isaac Halevy
    “Wissenschaft Des Judentums, Historical Consciousness, and Jewish Faith: The Diverse Paths of Frankel, Auerbach, and Halevy” by David Ellenson
    From Text to Tradition, a History of Judaism in Second Temple and Rabbinic Times: A History of Second Temple and Rabbinic Judaism by Lawrence Schiffman
    Josephus: The Complete Works by Flavius Josephus
    Comparing Judaism and Christianity: Common Judaism, Paul, and the Inner and the Outer in Ancient Religion by E.P. Sanders
    Book of Jeremiah
    Tractate Yadayim
    Pirkei Avot 1:1
    Book of Ezra
    Book of Nechemia
    Divrei HaYamim II 35:13
    The Four Stages of Rabbinic Judaism by Jacob Neusner
    Matthew 12, The New Testament
    Miktzat Ma'ase Ha-Torah
    Der Babylonische Talmud by Lazarus Goldschmidt
    Sefer HaIkkarim by Rav Yosef Albo
    Texts and Traditions: A Source Reader for the Study of Second Temple and Rabbinic Judaism by Lawrence Schiffman
    Sefer HaChinuch by Anonymous

    • 1 hr 15 min
    Anonymous: Searching for the Beginning [Origins of Judaism 1/6]

    Anonymous: Searching for the Beginning [Origins of Judaism 1/6]

    In this episode of the 18Forty Podcast, we talk to an anonymous email sender about life upon the bridge between the truth of fact and the truth of feeling.

    Our anonymous guest sent an email in to 18Forty, which we read previously on the Malka Simkovich episode. In his email, he describes struggling with the Oral Torah and clinging to his faith despite the unknown.

    - How has practical Jewish religious observance evolved since the canonization of the Oral Torah?

    - Are the struggles of modern day Jews the same struggles Jews faced in the Second Temple period ?

    - Where does the divinity of the Jewish People lie?

    - Is Judaism intended to be a socially arbitrated system?

    Tune in to hear a conversation on authenticity within spirituality.
    Interview begins at 16:39

    References:

    Torah Musings Blog by Gil Student
    18Forty - “Malka Simkovich: The Mystery Of The Jewish People”
    Zakhor: Jewish History And Jewish Memory by Yosef Hayim Yerushalmi
    Stories Of Your Life And Others by Ted Chiang
    Exhalation: Stories by Ted Chiang
    Arrival
    18Forty - “Moshe And Asher Weinberger: Heart Of The Fire: Together Even With Small Differences”
    18Forty - “Larry And Tzipora Rothwachs: Here Without You — A Child’s Eating Disorder”
    18Forty - “Andrew Solomon: Far From The Tree”
    “Welcome To Holland” by Emily Perl Kingsley
    18Forty - “The Legacy Of Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks”
    18Forty - “Chaim Saiman: Is Talmud The Jewish Constitution?”
    18Forty - “Ari Bergmann: Talmud As An Agent Of Chaos”
    18Forty - “Joshua Berman: What Should We Believe?”
    “Is It Really the Torah, Or Is It Just the Rabbis?” by Tzvi Freeman
    Josephus: The Complete Works by Flavius Josephus
    From Text to Tradition, a History of Judaism in Second Temple and Rabbinic Times: A History of Second Temple and Rabbinic Judaism by Lawrence Schiffman
    The Rambam’s Introduction to the Mishna
    Iggeres d'Rav Shrira Gaon
    The Thirteen Principles of Torah Elucidation by Rav Yishmael
    Ace Ventura: Pet Detective
    The Shulchan Aruch by Rabbi Yoseph Karo
    ”Left and Right Brain Judaism” by Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
    COVID responsa from Rav Herschel Schachter
    Show & Tale: Pinny Stieglitz
    Game of Thrones
    The Matrix
    18Forty - Intergenerational Divergence
    Mishna Berurah by Rabbi Yisrael Meir Kagan
    “Rupture and Reconstruction” by Haym Soloveitchik
    Judaism Straight Up by Moshe Koppel
    Sin-a-gogue: Sin and Failure in Jewish Thought by David Bashevkin
    Discovering Second Temple Literature: The Scriptures and Stories That Shaped Early Judaism by Malka Z. Simkovich
    Outside the Bible: Ancient Jewish Writings Related to Scripture by Louis H. Feldman

    • 1 hr 45 min
    Child & Parental Alienation: Keeping Families Together [Teshuva 6/6]

    Child & Parental Alienation: Keeping Families Together [Teshuva 6/6]

    This series is sponsored by our friends, Daniel and Mira Stokar.

    In this episode, we discuss parental alienation. In some way or another, almost all of us struggle with alienation. Who among us doesn’t feel too far from someone that we love? The meeting points of religion and family in religious communities can make navigating change in the family unit difficult, sometimes leading to alienation. As we approach Yom Kippur, we spoke to five people who have lived through the stressors that lead to alienation. These guests are people that might be your neighbors, your rabbis, your siblings, or your parents, talking about the cost and challenge of keeping family close, no matter how hard it might be.

    In this interview, we discuss:

    — How does parental alienation start, and where might it lead?
    — What can someone do to avoid or rectify alienation?
    — What can we learn from those who have struggled with familial alienation?

    Thank you to each of these guests for sharing their stories with openness, vulnerability, and honesty, and thank you to Eitan Katz for permission to use his song, Ki Karov.

    Resources:
    "Somebody’s Son," Richard Pindell
    Kesher Nafshi
    Toldos Support Group for parental alienation

    • 1 hr 20 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
372 Ratings

372 Ratings

MH Chigo ,

Excellent

An excellent podcast - very thought provoking and always a worthwhile listen

MS-RN 26 ,

Wonderful podcast!!!

I cannot thank you enough for putting out such amazing thought provoking content! This podcast has helped guide me on my journey and has enriched my Judaism in profound ways! I highly recommend it to everyone, especially to those grappling with their faith.
May hashem continue to give you and your team the ability to carry on in your holy work for many years to come!!!
Thank you

Rosereso ,

Thank you

I just listened to the incredible story told by Kayla Haber Goldstein and I am moved to another level. Thank you for doing this and thank you for sharing!

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