ב"ה

The Whys of Our Ways

Exploring Jewish customs and traditions

A deeper understanding and exploration of Jewish customs and traditions, and how they have forged us into a more kind and compassionate nation.

Brit Milah and Pidyon Haben
The mitzvah of circumcision and redeeming the firstborn son
Why is a male child circumcised at eight days? Why isn’t a female circumcised? What is a Pidyon Haben celebration, and why do we do it?
Upsherin and Bar & Bat Mitzvah
The first haircut and entering adulthood
What is an upsherin, and what’s the message behind this ceremonious haircut? What transformation occurs at a bar or bat mitzvah, and how can we tap into this new energy?
Communal Prayer, Tattoos, and Visiting a Cemetery
The power of praying together as a community, the prohibition against tattoos, and the custom of visiting and praying at a cemetery.
Charity Before Prayers, Kashrut, and Reciting Blessings
Why we give charity before we pray, why we refrain from eating certain foods, and how saying blessings promotes the attitude of gratitude.
Chanukah, Jewish Identity and the Message of the Light
As parents we need to ignite our children's flame of passion and ensure that their excitement for Yiddishkeit doesn't become extinguished.