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All Questions Answered by
Rabbi Corey Helfand

Question: I have a question for a rabbi. In a world where space is at a premium and I don't want to cause great financial strain for my family, why does Jewish tradition forbid me from choosing cremation as an option when I die? [JVO Kids: 4-6]
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Question: What role may a Christian stepfather play in or during the ceremony celebrating a Bar Mitzvah? [Administrator's note: A somewhat related question regarding names is found at: http://www.jewishvaluesonline.org/question.php?id=152]
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Question: What are three questions I can ask on a date or in a relationship if I'm seeing someone who isn't Jewish to understand how compatible or incompatible our values are? For example, I know I'm uncomfortable with the symbol of a crucifix, but I'm not really sure why. I am hoping for questions I could ask or scenarios I could present that really flush out the core value differences between Jews and non-Jews.
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Question: I'm a Russian Jew. I see myself as Jewish, even though I don't live Jewishly. I practice Buddhism, have non-Jewish boyfriends, and think that believing in G-d the way prayers show me makes man into a weak and helpless being. And yet I feel united with all Jewish women through the centuries when I light Chanukah candles, get liberated from Egypt and certain personal slaveries each Pesach (even though I don't keep any Pesach mitzvoth), and etc. It hurts me to feel that I would not be accepted as I am by other Jews. I don't want to comply and be "a good Jewish girl" just for the sake of it - it's not the kind of life I see for myself. Yet I want to find my place among my people and I don't know where it is... What can you tell me to help me? How can I find a way to fit into Judaism?
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Question: My first wife and I divorced many years ago. My oldest son (from that marriage) sided with her at that time, and still has no contact with me today, more than twenty years later. What action, if any, is necessary on my part in order to rectify this situation?
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LATEST BLOGS  view all blog entries

Ten Expressions You Didn't Know Come From The Bible

Posted on 12/12/2017 by Rivkah Lambert Adler in Beliefs and Practices
My husband and I were on a long road trip recently when he casually mentioned that the expression "cream of wheat"...

Hanukkah: The Jewish Christmas

Posted on 12/11/2017 by Moshe Daniel Levine in Holidays
“Happy Hanukkah!” I have begun to hear these words with increased frequency as I go about my daily schedule....

Finding Our Purpose

Posted on 12/05/2017 by Marcia Goldlist in Beliefs and Practices
In our modern world new inventions are brought to our attention almost every day. And discoveries which will hopefully lead...

Why I Don't Decorate For Chanukah

Posted on 12/04/2017 by Rivkah Lambert Adler in Holidays
I’m in a Jewish Facebook group that, over the past few days, has had a series of posts with hundreds of comments about...

Why Lies About Israel Are Surprisingly Effective

Posted on 11/30/2017 by Moshe Daniel Levine in Beliefs and Practices
I’m going to tell you a few lies: Halley’s Comet will be visible the first week in March, 2018. 91% of people...

Perking Up Hanukkah For Our Children

Posted on 11/28/2017 by Marcia Goldlist in Holidays
In the Shema we say that we love God and that the things that He taught/commanded us we are to teach to our children. That...
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THE VIEWS EXPRESSED IN ANSWERS PROVIDED HEREIN ARE THOSE OF THE INDIVIDUAL JVO PANEL MEMBERS, AND DO NOT
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