Contact Us

Ask "Rabbi Y"

Ask "Rabbi Y"


Learn something new every week!

Did you ever wonder why we Jews do what we do? Get your answers from "Rabbi Y," a veteran of's acclaimed Ask the Rabbi team, who answers another "why" question every week. No question is too obscure, and no area of Jewish life is off-limits.

Click here to submit your question to "Rabbi Y" and here to receive “Ask Rabbi Y” every week by email, and join our growing group of learning, enlightened Jews.

What are you waiting for? Let's get learning!

Why Is Tefillin Worn on the Left Arm?
The sages of the Talmud take it as a given that tefillin are put on the left arm (or the right arm of a lefty) and offer several reasons…
Twins in the Bible
The first, and perhaps the most famous, twins in the Bible are Jacob and Esau. The only other set is Peretz and Zerach.
Why Do Mourners Tear Keriah on Their Garments?
Tearing garments upon the death of a close relative, "keriah" in Hebrew, dates back to biblical times.
What Are Archangels?
The term “archangel” doesn’t actually have a Hebrew equivalent in Jewish Scriptures.
Why Is There a Chair for Elijah at a Brit Milah (Circumcision)?
During the period when the nation of Israel was split into two kingdoms, Elijah the prophet had a showdown at Mt. Carmel with 450 false prophets of the Baal idol . . .
Why Is the Olive Branch a Symbol of Peace?
Long before the ancient Greeks, the Bible recorded that the dove brought an olive branch to the ark.
Why Is Rosh Hashanah Challah Round?
Many have the custom to begin the Rosh Hashanah meals with round challahs, often filled with raisins and sweeter than usual. Here's why.
And when do we double them up?
Why Do Many Chassidim Wear Shtreimels (Fur Hats)?
And why doesn’t Chabad wear them?
And why doesn’t Chabad wear them?
What Is Rashi Script and Where Did It Come From?
Can you please explain the origins of this script? Did Rashi have his own unique Hebrew script?
Why Is Impurity Not Observed?
The Torah contains a complex code of purity laws. Why are Jews not careful about these laws nowadays?
Why Sleep With Tzitzit?
I was under the impression that the mitzvah of wearing tzitzit only applies to the daytime. But then I heard that many have the custom to wear tzitzit during the night as well. Can you explain the reason behind this?
Why Say Shema at Bedtime?
Didn't we just say it in Maariv?
Shema is included in the evening service. Yet the Talmud states that before one goes to sleep to sleep, he should recite the Shema. Why?
Didn't we just say it in Maariv?
Why Two Rollers for a Torah and One for a Megillah?
Why does a Torah scroll have two poles or rollers, while the Megillah (Book of Esther), which is also read from a scroll of parchment, only has one rollers (or none at all)?
What Is the Jewish Approach to the Apocrypha?
The 24 books of the Bible were canonized by the Anshei Knesset Hagedolah. Any later works are not considered Divinely inspired.
Matzah on Pesach Sheini: When and Why?
The Paschal lamb was consumed on the evening of Iyar 15, but the custom is to eat matzah on Iyar 14. Why?
Four Holy Cities of Israel: What and Why?
The terms “four holy cities of Israel” or “four lands of life” refer to Jerusalem, Hebron, Safed and Tiberias.