HaAdam Al HaYareach (Man on the Moon) Part 4

In 1969 Rabbi Menachem Kasher, one of the gedolim [= great Torah scholars] of the twentieth century, published a series of Torah thought essays related to the most amazing event of his time, or any time ever in human history: the Apollo 11 Moon Landing. In honor of the 50th Anniversary of the Apollo 11 Moon Landing, this week I am…

Eclipses

In the less well known Pirkei DeRabbi Eliezer we find a less ominous, more astronomy focused talmudic take on eclipses…

Bilaam’s Star Prophecy

“A star shall come forth from Jacob”. Let the meaning hidden in this verse shine forth better with modern astronomy…

The Lights of Kislev

The light of the Menorah is a symbol, but of what? There are surprising similarities to… a rainbow…?

Abraham and the First Planetarium

In Parshat Lech Lecha, we find Genesis 15:5, a great verse for astronomical commentaries and homiletics, for fairly obvious reasons: וַיּוֹצֵ֨א אֹת֜וֹ הַח֗וּצָה וַיֹּ֙אמֶר֙ הַבֶּט־נָ֣א הַשָּׁמַ֗יְמָה וּסְפֹר֙ הַכּ֣וֹכָבִ֔ים אִם־תּוּכַ֖ל לִסְפֹּ֣ר אֹתָ֑ם וַיֹּ֣אמֶר ל֔וֹ כֹּ֥ה יִהְיֶ֖ה זַרְעֶֽךָ׃ He took him outside and said, “Look toward heaven and count the stars, if you are able to count…

The Astronomers’ Blessing

The morning blessing Yotzer Or, “Who creates light”: “The Astronomers’ Blessing”. It focuses on things near and dear to astronomers, light and more…