132 episodes

JewishBoston.com’s The Vibe of the Tribe podcast explores Jewish arts and culture, history, Israel, tradition and so much more. Hosted by Boston Jews Miriam and Dan, with special guests.

The Vibe of the Tribe JewishBoston.com

    • Society & Culture
    • 4.8 • 30 Ratings

JewishBoston.com’s The Vibe of the Tribe podcast explores Jewish arts and culture, history, Israel, tradition and so much more. Hosted by Boston Jews Miriam and Dan, with special guests.

    Frequently Asked Questions About Judaism

    Frequently Asked Questions About Judaism

    The Vibe of the Tribe recently asked you, our listeners and members of the community, what questions you’ve always had about Judaism. Turns out, you had a lot of questions, like: Where do Jewish prayers come from? What really makes food kosher? What’s the difference between Jewish denominations? Why do many Jews cover their heads, and why such a sartorial variety of hats, scarves, snoods and wigs? What do acronyms like Z”L and B”H stand for? And, really, what’s up with the celebrity obsession with Kabbalah?

    Extremely qualified guest expert Rabbi Vanessa Harper, an educator at Temple Beth Elohim in Wellesley and the genius creator of https://www.instagram.com/lechlechallah, joins Miriam and Ashley on this episode to answer these questions, and more!

    Please note: The Vibe of the Tribe podcast is going on hiatus. It’s been a true joy to share these episodes and learn along with you. Our wish is that this podcast, and knowledgeable experts like Rabbi Harper, will continue to inspire you to learn more about the incredible diversity and array of Jewish culture, heritage and history that connects us all as one people. To reach out to us, email podcast@jewishboston.com.

    Produced by Miriam Anzovin and edited by Miriam Anzovin and Jesse Ulrich, with music by Ryan J. Sullivan.

    • 55 min
    Honoring the Stories of Ethiopian Jews

    Honoring the Stories of Ethiopian Jews

    When she was a child, human rights activist and educator Dr. Shula Mola and her family fled Ethiopia for Israel. As they and other members of the Beta Israel Ethiopian Jewish community embarked on this harrowing journey through Sudan, Dr. Mola dreamed of their goal—a return to Jerusalem, and reuniting in community with other Jews at the Beit HaMikdash (holy temple) in Jerusalem.

    The gap between the dream and the reality of coming to the State of Israel as refugees was massive and often deeply traumatic. Dr. Mola, now a post-doctoral fellow at the Schusterman Center for Israel Studies at Brandeis University focusing on preserving and elevating Ethiopian Jewry in Israel, joins The Vibe of the Tribe for an important episode on a unique community in the Jewish diaspora. Looking back at that time from her current vantage point, she discusses what happened when her community’s self-perception and identity encountered the realities of Israeli society, and the ongoing struggle the Beta Israel have faced to be “recognized” as part of the Jewish people by the rabbinical establishment—despite practicing Judaism for thousands of years.

    Tune in to hear Dr. Mola’s riveting personal narrative and illuminating overview of the issues the Beta Israel community faces. As the co-founder of Mothers on Guard, a group of mothers that protests police brutality against youth of Ethiopian origin, Dr. Mola discusses fighting for her community and how the discourse around race in Israel differs from that in America. Dr. Mola also shares how aspects of the Beta Israel community’s traditions, like the post-Yom Kippur holiday of Sigd, are finally being officially recognized in Israel and what it means for Beta Israel inclusion.

    Dr. Mola will also be speaking on Sunday, Nov. 21, at 10 a.m. about the struggle of Ethiopian Jews in Israel for “normality” and the variety of ways to deal with exclusion and racism. Register for the event, hosted by Temple Emunah, CJP and Schusterman Center for Israel Studies: https://www.jewishboston.com/events/i-am-completely-normal-the-struggle-of-ethiopian-israelis

    To reach out to us, email podcast@jewishboston.com.

    Produced by Miriam Anzovin and edited by Miriam Anzovin and Jesse Ulrich, with music by Ryan J. Sullivan.

    • 58 min
    Strangers in Strange Lands: Sci-Fi & The Jewish Experience

    Strangers in Strange Lands: Sci-Fi & The Jewish Experience

    Spooky season is upon us, and that means it’s time for The Vibe of the Tribe’s annual Halloween episode with author and occult and sci-fi expert Peter Bebergal! This year, we’ve left our usual haunted graveyards and golem attics to explore the horror themes, Jewish parallels and otherworldly allure of science fiction for Jewish writers and creators.

    Tune in to this discussion of how the sci-fi genre has been influenced by Jewish hopes and fears by writers and artists like Isaac Asimov and Jack Kirby. We examine the assimilationist Borg of “Star Trek,” the immigrant story of Superman (a true “stranger in a strange land”) and graphic novel Jewish representation in characters like Magneto and Wanda Maximoff (“WandaVision”). 

    If you are also captivated by the horror of alternative histories, or are intrigued about aliens in Jewish scripture and wonder how you can practice Judaism in space, this episode is for you!

    In addition to being a four-time podcast guest (check out previous episodes below!), Bebergal is the author of “Strange Frequencies: The Extraordinary Story of the Technological Quest for the Supernatural,” “Season of the Witch: How the Occult Saved Rock and Roll” and “Too Much to Dream: A Psychedelic American Boyhood.” He’s also the editor of the anthology “Appendix N: The Eldritch Roots of Dungeons and Dragons.”

    This episode is dedicated to Ilan Ramon (z”l), the first Israeli astronaut and a Jewish pioneer who sought answers to questions we asked during this episode. The son of a Holocaust survivor, Ramon was killed in the Space Shuttle Columbia disaster.

    Further reading: 

    ”6 Must-Read SFF Books by Jewish Authors From Around the World” by Carly Silver: https://www.tor.com/2020/10/14/6-must-read-sff-books-by-jewish-authors-from-around-the-world/
    “Wandering Stars: An Anthology of Jewish Fantasy & Science Fiction” edited by Jack Dann: http://www.jewishlights.com/mm5/merchant.mvc?Screen=PROD&Store_Code=JL&Product_Code=978-1-58023-005-6&Category_Code=
    “Jews in Space: On the Unsung History of Jewish Writers and the Birth of Science Fiction” by Lavie Tidhar: https://lithub.com/jews-in-space-on-the-unsung-history-of-jewish-writers-and-the-birth-of-science-fiction/

    To reach out to us, email podcast@jewishboston.com.

    Produced by Miriam Anzovin and edited by Jesse Ulrich, with music by Ryan J. Sullivan.

    • 44 min
    Asylum: A Memoir of Family Secrets

    Asylum: A Memoir of Family Secrets

    How much do we really know about the lives of our parents and the secrets they’ve kept in their past? How do we delineate fiction from fact in our family histories? What parts are real and what parts have we needed to be real? Many people may wonder, but few actually embark on a quest to uncover the truth. Judy Bolton-Fasman, one among the rare few who have done it, was brave enough to recount in a gripping memoir her search for the familial mysteries that have haunted her life.

    The beloved arts and culture writer for JewishBoston.com, Bolton-Fasman joins her colleagues Miriam, Ashley and Kali to speak about her mesmerizing book debut, “Asylum: A Memoir of Family Secrets.” 

    Tune in as we discuss the juxtaposition of her Sephardic and Ashkenazi identities, the jaw-dropping revelations she discovered about her parents and what it’s like to become a 60-year-old literary debutante.

    Learn more at https://www.judyboltonfasman.com and https://www.jewishboston.com/profile/judybf.

    To reach out to us, email podcast@jewishboston.com.

    Produced by Miriam Anzovin and edited by Jesse Ulrich, with music by Ryan J. Sullivan.

    • 34 min
    Tolkien and the Jews

    Tolkien and the Jews

    In “a long-expected” episode, The Vibe of the Tribe celebrates the 20th anniversary of the cinematic release of the iconic fantasy film “The Lord of the Rings: The Fellowship of the Ring.” Join Miriam and guest Jesse Ulrich of Pod4Good as they harness the power of their mutual nerd interests (Judaism and fantasy literature) to set forth on a quest to understand the world of author J.R.R. Tolkien through a Jewish lens.

    They explore Tolkien’s own words on how Jewish history, culture and language influenced his creation of Middle Earth, his use of Jewish stereotypes and how he responded to the rise of Nazism.

    They also discuss how Tolkien is, at heart, a writer of (Anglo-Saxon) midrash and how characters, events and locations throughout “The Lord of the Rings” films and books embody Jewish values and ethics. From Frodo’s deep mesiras nefesh (self-sacrifice), Boromir’s teshuva (repentance/returning), the Entish love for Tu B’Shvat to who should be the last person in the “Fellowship Minyan,” they discuss it all.

    Grab your second breakfast, settle into your comfortable hobbit hole and press play on this gloriously nerd-tastic episode!

    To reach out to us, email podcast@jewishboston.com.

    Produced by Miriam Anzovin and edited by Jesse Ulrich, with music by Ryan J. Sullivan.

    • 49 min
    Jewish Death Rituals Explained

    Jewish Death Rituals Explained

    We exist in an era when the Jewish rituals around mourning—such as sitting shiva and saying kaddish—make frequent appearances in popular culture, from Marvel TV shows to films to Broadway plays. There is, however, significantly less attention paid to the other rituals around death, ones that are fundamental to understanding how Judaism sees the role of the living in caring for the dead. 

    The Hevra Kadisha, or holy society, comprises highly-trained volunteers who take care of the deceased with a profound level of respect and commitment. Jewish tradition offers ancient and beautiful customs and rituals to guide us through loss, and serving in the Hevra Kadisha is not only considered a privilege, it is an act of ultimate loving-kindness and respect toward our fellow Jews.

    To discuss these important and meaningful mitzvot, Miriam and Dan are joined by two members of the Community Hevra Kadisha of Greater Boston (https://www.hevrakadisha.org). James Cohen (he/him), co-president, is deeply involved in the community, having previously worked at Keshet and currently at Jewish Family & Children’s Service.

    Emily Fishman (they/them or she/her), who goes by the name EmFish, has been a member of the Community Hevra Kadisha of Greater Boston for about five years. Alongside Cohen, they co-led the Hevra Kadisha’s trans tahara project (https://www.keshetonline.org/resources/toward-a-gender-inclusive-hevra-kadisha). They have also been teaching and consulting with hevras in other metro areas for more than a year.

    Tune in to this episode to learn about burial rituals, the importance of inclusivity in the work of the Community Hevra Kadisha (https://jewishjournal.com/commentary/blogs/241299/taharah-gender-emily-fishman-emfish) and how lessons from the tahara (ritual purification) room can ripple out to positively impact the Jewish community at large.

    Want to learn more? Listen to our discussion with a professional medium about communicating with departed loved ones and the soul’s journey (https://www.jewishboston.com/read/the-vibe-of-the-tribe-podcast-making-contact-beyond-the-veil-of-death, and our episode about heaven and hell in Judaism (https://www.jewishboston.com/read/the-vibe-of-the-tribe-podcast-heaven-and-hell-in-judaism).

    To reach out to us, email podcast@jewishboston.com.

    Produced by Miriam Anzovin and edited by Jesse Ulrich, with music by Ryan J. Sullivan.

    • 38 min

Customer Reviews

4.8 out of 5
30 Ratings

30 Ratings

chabad fan ,

Intermarriage

Great discussion about interfaith marriages. I found it to be very interesting.

Starr zena ,

Great whether you’re in Boston or not

I recently moved to Boston to start grad school, and the moment I found out I would be relocating I googled Jewish life in Boston. I started listening to Vibe of the Tribe months before I moved here and found it relevant and interesting even while living out of state. The topics are diverse and the hosts are charismatic. 5 stars!

Harry the Goniff ,

I love this podcast.

❤️

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