This is where I hope we can exchange important information and thoughts regarding minhag, Jewish thought and German Jewish history. These are all topics that I enjoy and have had some exposure to. There are some excellent sites in the Frum blogosphere that handle these subjects with very capable academic authorship. I don’t have much […]

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Transcribed from a lecture by Rabbi Benyamin S. Hamburger Shlita on Chol Hamoed 5778. Video here. Please excuse that this is written in the flow of a spoken lecture and not as an essay or even a blog post.   In the study of minhag we need to be discerning. For example, the minhag of […]

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Here are two recordings in my possession one is a cassette recorded many years ago by the Leo Baeck Institute of Cantor Erwin Hirsch of the  Congregation “Habonim” (Conservative), As the institute does not have any record of this recording in their catalog both digital and physical I present it here for preservation. Songs include: […]

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Rav Hirsch wrote his first work under the pen name “Ben Uziel”. In the leaf preceding the work he quoted the Talmud megilah 3a “ But You know very well that I did it not for my own honor, nor for the honor of my father’s house, but rather I did it for Your Honor, […]

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I recently came into posession of several records of German Chazonim. Cantor Binyamin Z. Barsilai in record above. A Cantor Shlomo Barzilai officiated at the Great Synagogue in Vienna. Today his son  Shmuel Barzilai has this position. The record does not identify where this chazan prayed. Click here for a record that seems to have […]

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Before this Yom Tov passes I want to share a “shtikel Torah”. That is not the standard for this Torah blog, but I don’t have confidence that my yeshivah styled derech halimud would qualify my Aschkenaz oriented pieces to the pages of the revered Torah journal that is devoted to this (Yerushaseinu). So, part of […]

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  The Shofar is blown during the repetition of the Amidah. There are several opinions mentioned in the rishonim as to just what to blow.   The source for this practice is the Talmud hRosh Hashana 17a. “Say before Me (G-d) the malcios, zichronos and shofaros on Rosh  Hashana…MAlchios, to make Me your King, Zichronos […]

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  A quick thought that I once had. Rav Hirsch in his commentary to the 24th Psalm, explains the repetition and nuance of the last few verses: Seu She’arim Rasheichem – Let the gates lift their heads Vehinasu  Pischei olam– Let the portals of the world be raised up Veyavo Melech Hakovod– and the Glorious […]

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One Minhag that is practiced in Breuers is the practice that one who leads the congregation in Selichos will also serve as chazan the evening before, and during the day when feasible. Reb Yisroel Strauss adds that they still allow for an Avel to daven with the following qualifiers: An Avel can daven (except 1st […]

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In an interview with Rabbi Dr. Eric Zimmer of Jerusalem, for an upcoming video on the channel, we asked him about interesting minhagim that he remembers from his years serving as the Rav of a small congregation of German Jews from the countryside of Hessen and other outlying communities. The Shul, Ahavath Torah eventually merged into what is today, Shaarei Hatikvah. He recorded that the […]

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I am sorry for this late post. The leinin of the dibros by Benno Weis is avalable on FSU Archives. Here is the first dibrah as read by someone else. I don’t know who, but we received this recording from Mr. Joseph Katzenstien aH many years ago. Mr. Katzenstien gave us many old recordings when […]

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