The Jewish book of why

Front Cover
Penguin Compass, Mar 4, 2003 - Religion - 308 pages
22 Reviews
Why do Jews eat gefilte fish?

€ Why is a glass broken at the end of a Jewish wedding ceremony?
€ Why must the chapter of curses in the Torah be read quickly in a low voice?
€ Why are shrimp and lobster not kosher?
€ Why do Jews fast on Yom Kippur?
€ Why are some Matzot square while others are round?

If you've ever asked or been asked any of these questions, The Jewish Book of Why has all the answers. In this complete, concise, fascinating, and thoroughly informative guide to Jewish life and tradition, Rabbi Alfred J. Kolatch clearly explains both the significance and the origin of nearly every symbol, custom, and practice known to Jewish culture-from Afikomon to Yarmulkes, and from Passover to Purim. Kolatch also dispels many of the prevalent misconceptions and misunderstandings that surround Jewish observance and provides a full and unfettered look at the biblical, historical, and sometimes superstitious reasons and rituals that helped develop Jewish law and custom and make Judaism not just a religion, but a way of life. L'chaim!

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Review: The Jewish Book of Why

User Review  - SmarterLilac - Goodreads

Amazing. This helped me understand more about the nuts and bolts of this rich, complex faith and its long history. The best thing about this book is that it breaks down what can seem the Herculean ... Read full review

Review: The Jewish Book of Why

User Review  - Bob - Goodreads

Excellent book to understand Jewish customs, especially holy days. Read full review

Contents

General Introduction
1
The Early Years
13
Marriage and Divorce
25
Death and Mourning
47
The Dietary Laws
82
Objects and Garb
96
The Synagogue
120
Posture and Prayer
139
Shavuot
201
The High Holidays
211
Sukkot Shemini Atzeret and Simchat Tora
235
Chanuka
248
Purim
257
Minor Observances
267
General Questions
277
Bibliography
287

The Sabbath
154
Passover
174
Index
294
Copyright

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About the author (2003)

Alfred J. Kolatch is a graduate of the Teacher's Institute of Yeshiva University and its College of Liberal Arts and is an ordained rabbi in the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. He is the author of numerous books, including The Jewish Home Advisor.

Bibliographic information