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Is the ban on Spinoza being lifted?

Is the ban on Spinoza being lifted?

AMSTERDAM — More than 350 years after this city’s Portuguese Jewish community excommunicated Baruch Spinoza and banned his writings for eternity, the philosopher’s books are for sale at the souvenir shop of the community’s synagogue.

Spinoza, a Dutch-born Jewish philosopher who laid the intellectual foundations of the Enlightenment and is sometimes referred to as history’s first secular Jew, was banished by Amsterdam’s Portuguese Jews in 1656 for heresy.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 17 December 2015 12:06 )

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Features

Autistic soldiers bring special skills to IDF

Autistic soldiers bring special skills to IDFTEL AVIV — Sitting in front of a computer at the center of Israel’s largest army base, a soldier stares at the screen, moving pixel by pixel over a satellite photograph, picking out details and finding patterns. A few years ago N.S., who has autism, thought the Israel Defense Forces wouldn’t take him. N.S., who like other soldiers could not give his name due to IDF protocol, spent his childhood in mainstream classroom settings, where he had focused on studying film and Arabic, but expect...
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Holiday Features

Gift Guide: Chanukah children's books

Gift Guide: Chanukah children's books CHANUKAH EDITION 5776SECTION D PAGE 4 NEW YORK — Sharing blessings, welcoming guests, and friendship are themes that illuminate a new crop of Chanukah books for children. The eight-day Festival of Lights begins this year with the first candle lighting on Sunday evening, Dec. 6 Children’s writers and illustrators serve up a sparkling array of lively and inspiring stories. They take readers from the streets of New York City to a moshav in Israel and even into the kitchen to cook up some Ch...

Last Updated ( Friday, 04 December 2015 08:48 )

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Features

Parisian dining, strictly kosher — with a Michelin starred chef

Parisian dining, strictly kosher — with a Michelin starred chefPARIS — With 84 Michelin-certified restaurants and a combined total of 115 stars, the French capital offers a dazzling gastronomic selection to anyone willing to stomach the bill. Anyone but observant Jews, that is. For years, the kosher-keeping community has been limited to budget pizzerias or moderately priced eateries offering couscous and grilled meat. While many of the restaurants serve good food, they’re a far cry from Paris’ culinary giants, with their daring interpretations of cl...
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Holiday Features

Gift Guide: Mensch on a Bench is toy and book combo

Gift Guide: Mensch on a Bench is toy and book comboLEADING UP to Chanukah, 2014, former Hasbro toy and game company employee Neal Hoffman conducted a successful Kickstarter online crowdfunding campaign to get out his new product, “Mensch on a Bench.” The Cincinnati resident was readying for an even bigger stage: national TV. Hoffman’s toy-and-book set based on the story of the character “Moshe the Mensch” sold more than 50,000 units, generating close to $1 million in revenue.

Last Updated ( Thursday, 05 November 2015 16:09 )

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Jewish groups slam Ted Nugent for anti-Semitic gun control post

Gabe Friedman The right-wing singer shared the post on Monday with an image of the Israeli flag next to each one of the Jewish leaders, including former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, Chicago Mayor Rahm Ema... [Link]

NY Fashion Week: Jewish prayer shawl gets moment of glam

Gabe Friedman Has the Jewish prayer shawl become a fashion statement? An unidentified men’s fashion enthusiast was spotted wearing a real tallit — not of the faux H&M variety — last week outside a Tomm... [Link]

Poll: Majority of Palestinians oppose third intifada

Julie Wiener (JTA) — The majority of Palestinians in the West Bank and Gaza oppose a third intifada, according to a new poll, reversing the popular sentiment from three months ago. The poll of 1,200 Palestinians... [Link]

Which Jewish city should you live in?

Gabe Friedman ... [Link]

John Tishman, whose company built World Trade Center and other skyscrapers, dies

Julie Wiener NEW YORK (JTA) — John Tishman, an influential developer who oversaw the construction of the World Trade Center’s Twin Towers and Chicago’s John Hancock Center, has died at 90. Tishman, who donat... [Link]

See how teen pals found each other some 50 years later

mbrodsky A “Seeking Kin” column spurs a Technion librarian to put his research expertise to work. ... [Link]

In all-Chabad Israeli village, Brooklyn meets country living

Ben Sales The major export of Kfar Chabad, an Israeli village near Tel Aviv where everyone is a Chabad Hasid, is outreach emissaries. ... [Link]

3 Arab-Israeli MKs suspended for meeting with terrorists’ families

Julie Wiener CORRECTION: This article stated incorrectly that 90 Knesset members had voted in favor of a bill that would allow lawmakers to be suspended or expelled for engaging in inappropriate behavior. In fact... [Link]

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