On this page are some links to articles and other readings I have enjoyed, along with mini-mini commentaries. I hope you find something you enjoy here, too.
Jewish with Feeling by Rabbi Zalman Schachter Shalomi. Imagine my delight to have found someone whose thoughts about prayer were similar in many ways to my own, but enriched and deepened with so many more decades of experience, study, and life. A great read for anyone hoping to deepen their experience of Jewish prayer.
The Path of Blessing by Rabbi Marcia Prager. The world of the Bracha revealed! Do you mutter speedily through those first six words of your Brachas? Here is a beautiful exploration about why you might want to consider luxuriating a little more when you bless.
Judaism as World Wisdom by Bradley Shavit Artson. A classmate of mine shared this article with me as we were exploring the musicology behind Hasidic niggunim. It's actually not about music, but it offered us some insight as to the place of niggunim in the world. I got a tiny bit squeamish towards the end of the article at a moment that felt a little evangelical, but I'm choosing to think he didn't mean it that way. A lovely idea, in genenral.
My People's Prayerbook Series edited by Rabbi Lawrence Hoffman. For those looking to deepen their understanding of Jewish liturgy. These books are full of articles exploring Jewish prayer from many different angles. I've found them very useful, both in improving my understanding and in deepening my spiritual connection to and through the texts of our liturgy. (Also available in Kindle versions.)
An excerpt from "The Thirst" by Hillel Zeitlin. This was read at our recent Yom HaShoa program by Rabbi Jacob Fine. A beautiful passage on the ineffable yearning for Divine connection.
Joy, Despair, and Hope: Reading Psalms by Rabbi Edward Feld. A beautiful exploration of psalms. In this work, Rabbi Feld examines and teaches us how to examine psalms in terms of poetic devices, theology, and emotional content. I especially appreciate that he does not gloss over the uncomfortable moments.