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Glossary

A B C D E F G H I J K L M N O P Q R S T U V W X Y Z 0-9

Ha'ara:  radiance, shine 
Habakkuk:  (6th century BCE) A contemporary of Joel and Nahum, he began prophesying during the reign of King Manasseh[6 related articles] The Prophets » Habakkuk
Habakkuk, the Book of:  The book of Tanach containing Habakkuk's prophecies, foretelling the Chaldean victory over the Judeans, Chaldea’s ultimate downfall, and asserting G-d's justice.  [1 related article] Tanach » Habakkuk, the Book of
Hachnassat Kallah:  the mitzvah of dowering a [poor] bride  Torah, The » Hachnassat Kallah
Hachnassat orchim:  (lit. “bringing in guests”); Hospitality  [48 related articles] Mitzvah; Mitzvot » Hachnassat orchim
Hadas:  myrtle, used during the festival of Sukkot for the mitzvah of the Four Species  [7 related articles] Sukkot » Hadas
Hadran:  (lit. "of glory"); lecture traditionally delivered at the conclusion-celebration (siyum) of a Talmudic tractate. 
Haftarah:  (lit. "concluding portion"); reading from the Prophets at the conclusion of the weekly Torah reading.  [136 related articles] Parshah (Weekly Torah Reading) » Haftarah
Haga'ot:  scholarly notes or glosses 
Hagar:  Sarah’s Egyptian maidservant. She became Abraham’s concubine due to Sarah’s childlessness at that point in time. Mother of Abraham’s eldest son, Ishmael. She and Ishmael were banished from Abraham’s household because of Ishmael’s potentially negative influence on Isaac. The midrash also identifies her as Keturah, the wife Abraham took after Sarah’s passing.  [11 related articles]
Hagbah (Raising the Torah):  (lit. "lifting"); the ritual of lifting the Torah scroll and displaying it to the congregation after the Torah reading  [5 related articles] Parshah (Weekly Torah Reading) » Hagbah (Raising the Torah)
Haggadah, The:  (lit. "the telling") book that retells the story of the exodus, from which the Passover seder is conducted  [127 related articles] Passover » Haggadah, The
Haggai:  (4th century BCE) A contemporary of Zechariah and Malachi, the last of the prophets; member of the Great Assembly; urged the Jews to build the Second Temple The Prophets » Haggai
Haggai, the Book of:  The book of Tanach containing Haggai's prophecies, admonishing the Jews to build the Second Holy Temple[1 related article] Tanach » Haggai, the Book of
Hair Covering:  The practice that married women cover their hair  [21 related articles]
Hakafot:  (lit., "going around in circles") the sevenfold dancing procession made with the Torah scrolls on the holiday of Simchat Torah  [21 related articles] Calendar, The Jewish » Hakafot
Hakhel Year:  (lit. "Assemble!") The year following the Sabbatical year, at the beginning of which all Jews would gather in the Temple to hear the king read selections from Deuteronomy.  [88 related articles] Calendar, The Jewish » Hakhel Year
Halacha (Torah law):  (lit. “the pathway”); (a) the body of Jewish law; (b) a single law  [903 related articles] Torah, The » Halacha (Torah law)
Halacha LeMoshe MiSinai:  (lit. "the law of Moses from Sinai"); a halachic tradition whose source is not from a verse or from an interpretation of a verse, but rather was transmitted orally by G-d to Moses  [2 related articles] Torah, The » Halacha LeMoshe MiSinai
Half Shekel, The:  the half-shekel contributed annually in the days of the Beit HaMikdash and its symbolic Purim-eve equivalent today  [29 related articles]
Hallel:  (lit. “praise”) The 14th step of the Passover seder, which is the recitation of Hallel  [8 related articles]
Hallel:  (lit. “praise”) A portion of Psalms (113-118) recited in the prayer service on the festivals and on Rosh Chodesh.  [23 related articles] G-d and Man » Hallel
Ham:  Son of Noah, survived the Flood together with his family by entering the Ark. Was cursed for his behavior during his father's drunken episode. Progenitor of Canaan.  [8 related articles]
Haman:  Jew-hating descendant of Amalek, appointed by King Ahasuerus to be prime minister of the Persian Empire. He plotted to annihilate the Jews, but was thwarted by Mordecai and Esther. At Ahasuerus' behest, he was hanged, as described in the Scroll of Esther which is read every year on Purim[18 related articles]
HaMelech:  The king. 
HaMotzi:  (lit. "Who brings forth"); blessing recited over bread  [5 related articles]
Hamshachah:  the drawing down (of Divine light) from Above 
Hananiah:  (a) (c, 400 BCE) Exiled to Babylon together with Daniel, Mishael, and Azariah, where they were trained to be chamberlains in the royal court. Despite the personal risk involved, they refused to eat the royal non-kosher cuisine. They were later appointed to government positions. They were thrown into a furnace after refusing to bow to an idol erected by Nebuchadnezzar. Miraculously, they emerged unscathed, as described in the Book of Daniel. (b) A common Jewish name.  [1 related article] Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah » Hananiah
Hananiah ben Akashia, Rabbi:  A Mishnaic sage.  [1 related article] People » Hananiah ben Akashia, Rabbi
Hananiah, Mishael, and Azariah:  (c, 400 BCE) Exiled to Babylon together with Daniel, where they were trained to be chamberlains in the royal court. Despite the personal risk involved, they refused to eat the royal non-kosher cuisine. They were later appointed to government positions. They were thrown into a furnace after refusing to bow to an idol erected by Nebuchadnezzar. Miraculously, they emerged unscathed, as described in the Book of Daniel[6 related articles]
Hanina ben Dosa, Rabbi:  (1st century BCE) Mishnaic sage, resident of the Galilee, pupil of Johanan ben Zakkai, and renowned miracle worker. Known for his great piety. Suffered great poverty.  [8 related articles] People » Hanina ben Dosa, Rabbi
Haninah ben Teradion, Rabbi:  (2nd century CE) Mishnaic sage, father of Rabbi Meir’s wife Beruriah. He directed a Torah academy in Siknin, and was renowned for his scrupulously honest administration of charity funds. He was one of the Ten Martyrs, wrapped in a Torah Scroll and burned alive by the Roman for publicly teaching Torah.  [4 related articles] People » Haninah ben Teradion, Rabbi
Hannah:  (a) (10th century BCE) A prophetess, wife of Elkanah. After years of childlessness she prayed for a son, vowing to devote him to G-d’s service. She subsequently gave birth to Samuel in 931 BCE. She is famous for the song of praise she composed after this event. (b) A common Jewish name.  [21 related articles]
Haran:  Brother of Abraham, and father of Sarah  [2 related articles]
Hashavat Aveida:  The mitzvah of returning a lost object to its rightful owner.  [11 related articles] Torah, The » Hashavat Aveida
Hashem:  (lit. "The Name") G-d.  [104 related articles] G-d and Man » Hashem
Hashgacha Pratit:  the concept that every event in the universe and every experience in a person's life, and their every aspect, is specifically guided and determined by the Divine will  [248 related articles] G-d and Man » Hashgacha Pratit
Hashpa'ah:  downward flow of Divine blessings, spiritual energy and illumination 
Haskalah:  (lit. “the Enlightenment”); (a) the movement founded in the late 18th century by Moses Mendelssohn to restudy the Torah in the light of modern secular knowledge; (b) later offshoots of this movement  [1 related article] Peoples, Nationalities & Cultures » Haskalah
HaTamim:  (lit. “the perfect one”); (a) title applied to those who studied in the Tomchei Tmimim Yeshiva; (b) periodical publication by the Students’ Organization of the Lubavitcher Yeshivah in Warsaw; only eight issues were actually printed, during the period of 1935-1937  Torah Books » HaTamim
Hatzlacha:  Extraordinary success  [11 related articles] Human Being, The » Work; Achievement » Hatzlacha
HaVaYaH:  (lit. “being”); the Tetragrammaton, G d’s Divine Name of the four Hebrew letters yud-hei-vav-hei, expressing His transcendence of time and space  [53 related articles] Divine Names, The » HaVaYaH
Havdalah:  (lit. “separation”); blessing recited over wine that concludes the Shabbat or festivals  [47 related articles] Calendar, The Jewish » Havdalah
HaYom Yom:  (lit. “From Day to Day”); an anthology of aphorisms and customs, arranged according to the days of the year, assembled from the talks and letters of Rabbi Yosef Yitzchak of Lubavitch (1880-1950), sixth Lubavitch Rebbe; compiled by Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, seventh Lubavitch Rebbe  [9 related articles] Torah Books » HaYom Yom
Head of a Fish:  It is customary on the first night of Rosh Hashanah to partake of the head of a fish, ram, or other kosher animal. This symbolizes our desire to be the "head and not the tail" during the coming year.  [7 related articles] Calendar, The Jewish » Head of a Fish
Hebrew Servant, Law of:  If a Jew stole and could not afford to make restitution, the courts would sell him into servitude for a six year term and payment from his "sale" would go towards paying his debt. A poor person could also choose to sell himself into servitude.  [12 related articles] Halacha (Torah law) » Hebrew Servant, Law of
Hefsek:  an unwarranted interruption (during prayer) 
Helem:  concealment 
Heller, R. Yomtov Lipman:  1579-1654; Prague and Vienna; author of Tosfot Yom Tov commentary on the Mishnah and Lechem Chamudot commentary on Mishneh Torah  [5 related articles] People » People & Events » Heller, R. Yomtov Lipman
Hemshech:  series of Chassidic discourses (maamarim) 
Hergesh:  (lit. "feeling"); in the context of Chassidic practice, an intuitive spiritual insight 
Herod:  (d. 1 BCE) King of Judea, husband of Mariamne. He killed all the Hasmoneans and seized the rule. Fearing that the rabbis would challenge his authority, he killed them all, leaving only Bava ben Buta. Later, out of remorse for his cruelty, he had the Holy Temple completely renovated. The new structure was magnificent.  [7 related articles] People » People & Events » Herod
Hester Panim:  (lit. “the hiding of the face”); refers to the manner in which G-d conceals His presence in the era of exile  [1 related article]
Heter Iska:  (lit. "partnership clause"); a halachic convention that allows interest to be paid for money deposited  Halacha (Torah law) » Heter Iska
Hevel:  vanity 
Hey:  the fifth letter of the Hebrew alphabet, prounounced "h," with a numerical value of 5  [14 related articles]
Hidden Good:    [13 related articles] Divine Providence » Hidden Good
Hiddur:  See "Hiddur Mitzvah"  [6 related articles] Torah, The » Hiddur
Hiddur Mitzvah:  (lit. “enhancement of the mitzvah” or "beautification of the mitzvah); enhancement or meticulous observance of a mitzvah (divine commandment) beyond the formal demands of the law.  [6 related articles] Torah, The » Hiddur Mitzvah
High Priest:  the “high priest,” or chief of the Kohanim; only he may enter the Holy of Holies  [34 related articles]
Hillel:  (d. 9 CE) Mishnaic sage, native of Babylon, student of Shemaiah and Abtalion, teacher of Jonathan ben Uzziel and Johanan ben Zakkai, Nasi of the Sanhedrin. He is well known for his statement, "What is hateful to you, do not do unto your fellow man." His Torah academy was known as the “House of Hillel.”  [20 related articles] People » Hillel
Hilula:  (lit. “joyous celebration”); traditional celebration held by chassidim on the anniversary of a tzaddik's passing 
Histalkut:  passing [of a tzaddik] 
Hitkallelut (Inter-inclusion):  in Kabbalah, the principle of inter-inclusion, by which each sefirah sefirah (Divine attribute) contains within it all of the other ten 
Hitkashrut:  (lit. "connection"); the bond between a chassid and his Rebbe  [5 related articles]
Hitlabshut:  (lit. “enclothing”); the vesting of Divine life energy in an entity in a manner which the Divine life energy adapts itself to the level and condition of the recipient 
Hod:  (lit. “splendor”); the fifth of the seven Divine middot, or attributes, and of their corresponding mortal middot, or spiritual emotions  [8 related articles] Sefirot, The (seven, ten) » Hod
Holy of Holies:  the inner chamber of the Temple where the Divine Presence was most revealed; contained the Holy Ark, was only entered by the High Priest on Yom Kippur  [10 related articles] Holy Temple, The » Holy of Holies
Holy Temple, The:  the Holy Temple in Jerusalem  [689 related articles] G-d and Man » Holy Temple, The
Honi Hame'aggel:  Mishnaic sage, lived through the Second Temple’s destruction. Known for his efficacious prayers. He is known as Honi the “Circle Maker” because he once ended a severe drought by drawing a circle in the earth and telling G-d that he would not leave the circle until it would rain.  [4 related articles] People » Honi Hame'aggel
Hopelessness:    [6 related articles] Human Being, The » Psychology & Behavior » Hopelessness
Hosea:  (a) (7th century BCE) A contemporary of Isaiah, Amos and Micah, he prophesied during the reign of King Jeroboam II. He called for the masses to return to G-d and avoid divine retribution.  [4 related articles] The Prophets » Hosea
Hosea, the Book of:  The book of Tanach containing Hosea's prophecies, many of them reproving Israel for their faithlessness to G-d, warning of exile, and foretelling the future redemption[2 related articles] Tanach » Hosea, the Book of
Hoshanah Rabbah:  the seventh day of the festival of Sukkot, considered to be the final day of the New Year's Divine "judgment" in which the year's fate is determined; in addition to the Four Kinds taken on the preceding days of Sukkot, an additional willow is taken on this day; it is customary to stay up all night on the eve of Hoshanah Rabbah and study Torah;  [28 related articles] Calendar, The Jewish » Hoshanah Rabbah
Hospitality:  Hospitality.  [48 related articles] Mitzvah; Mitzvot » Hospitality
House of Hillel:  The Torah academy founded by Hillel was known as the “House of Hillel.” The Mishnah records 316 disagreements between the House of Hillel and the school founded by Shammai, known as the " House of Shammai." The House of Hillel generally takes the lenient view and the House of Shammai, the more stringent one. In all but 18 cases, the halachah is accordance with the House of Hillel.  [2 related articles]
House of Shammai:  The Torah academy founded by Shammai was known as the “House of Shammai.” The Mishnah records 316 disagreements between the House of Shammai and the school founded by Hillel, known as the "House of Hillel." The House of Shammai generally takes the stringent view and the House of Hillel, the more lenient one. In all but 18 cases, the halachah is accordance with the House of Hillel.  [1 related article]
Huldah:  A prophetess, descendant of Joshua and Rahab, contemporary of Zephaniah and Jeremiah. She was approached for guidance when Hilkiah the High Priest found a Torah scroll in the Holy Temple in 458 BCE.  [4 related articles] The Prophets » Huldah
Huna:  Talmudic sage  [1 related article] People » People & Events » Huna
Hur:  (a) (d. 1313 BCE) Son of Miriam and Caleb, grandfather of Bezalel. Moses placed Aaron and Hur in charge of the Israelites in his absence, when he ascended Mount Sinai to receive the Tablets. According to the Midrash, Hur was stoned to death when he objected to the creation of the Golden Calf. (b) One of the five Kings of Midian mentioned in the Book of Numbers.  [4 related articles]

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