Video Essays on the Fifth Chapter of Pirkei Avot

Having published video essays on each of the texts in the first chapter of Pirkei Avotthe second chapter of Pirkei Avot, the third chapter of Pirkei Avot, and the fourth chapter of Pirkei Avot, I am now proud to share that I have completed a series of video essays on each of the texts in the fifth chapter of Pirkei Avot.

This entire series on the fifth chapter is available in this YouTube playlist.

While the video essay on the 21st text in this chapter is the longest of the entire series, the subsequent episode is one of the shortest of the series. This chapter actually yielded a few other video essays that reached double-digit minutes, largely due to the texts that utilized lists. The average length of the video essays on this chapter is 8:41.

Here is the entire series of video essays on the fifth chapter:
Pirkei Avot 5:1 – The World Was Created with 10 Statements
Pirkei Avot 5:2 – 10 Generations from Adam to Noah and 10 Generations from Noah to Abraham
Pirkei Avot 5:3 – Abraham Tested with Ten Trials
Pirkei Avot 5:4 – 10 Miracles/Plagues in Egypt & 10 More at the Sea
Pirkei Avot 5:5 – Ten Wonders Occurred for Our Ancestors in the Temple
Pirkei Avot 5:6 – The Creation of 10 Supernatural Phenomena
Pirkei Avot 5:7 – 7 Characteristics of Wise People & Uncultured People in Conversation
Pirkei Avot 5:8 – 7 Punishments & 7 Transgressions
Pirkei Avot 5:9 – Pestilence Increases at Four Periods of Time
Pirkei Avot 5:10 – Four Characteristics of People with Regard to Possessions
Pirkei Avot 5:11 – Four Temperaments of People
Pirkei Avot 5:12 – Four Types of Students
Pirkei Avot 5:13 – Four Categories of Tzedakah-Givers
Pirkei Avot 5:14 – Four Types of People Who Go To The Study House
Pirkei Avot 5:15 – Four Categories of Those Who Sit Before the Sages
Pirkei Avot 5:16 – Love That Is/Isn’t Dependent Upon Something
Pirkei Avot 5:17 – Disagreements That Are/Aren’t For the Sake of Heaven
Pirkei Avot 5:18 – Causing the Masses to Sin or Merit
Pirkei Avot 5:19 – The Disciples of Abraham & Bilam
Pirkei Avot 5:20 – Wisdom from Yehudah ben Tema
Pirkei Avot 5:21 – Different Stages at Different Ages
Pirkei Avot 5:22 – Ben Bag Bag’s Advice of Sticking with Studying the Torah
Pirkei Avot 5:23 – One’s Reward Corresponds to One’s Labor

Newest Village Art Insights Presentation: Sidra Torah Ark at The Skirball Museum
In conversation with Rabbi Shmuel Polin about the ark

I’m pleased to share the release of the newest presentation of Village Art Insights on the newest exhibit at The Skirball Museum. In addition to speaking with Jessica, my collaborator on the Village Art Insights series on the exhibit, a fully rebuilt Torah ark from 18th century Poland, we spoke with both museum director Abby Schwartz, as well as the exhibit’s creator, Rabbi Shmuel Polin for this presentation.

With Jessica

According to an article in the American Israelite, Rabbi Polin’s study of the lost ark and related material resulted in his rabbinic capstone project for graduating Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion’s rabbinical school. Rabbi Polin’s research coincided with a conservation project on the Polish ark in the Scheuer Chapel on the Cincinnati campus of HUC-JIR. Used daily by students for prayer, what began as a modest project to make the ark safe for everyday handling turned into analysis of paint and wood, and the discovery of a long-forgotten shipping label affixed to the back of the ark that revealed its specific original location of Schönlanke, Poland.

Skirball Museum director Abby Schwartz discussing the exhibition

New research conducted by Polin indicated that this precious Polish ark, which came to HUC in 1925 as part of the Berlin Judaica Collection of Salli Kirschstein, was made in about 1759. It had previously been dated about 1740. It is one of the few extant Polish arks of the eighteenth century. Soaring 20 feet high, the richly colored and symbolically reconstructed Sidra ark is a feat of imagination, engineering, and artistry.

 

Video Essays on the Fourth Chapter of Pirkei Avot

Having published video essays on each of the texts in the first chapter of Pirkei Avot, the second chapter of Pirkei Avot, and the third chapter of Pirkei Avot, I am now proud to share that I have completed a series of video essays on each of the texts in the fourth chapter of Pirkei Avot.

This entire series on the fourth chapter is available in this YouTube playlist.

Starting off, the first video in this chapter is lengthier than the rest, as it is a topic upon which I researched and wrote a decade ago.  It clocks in at a little over sixteen minutes. On the other end, the shortest video was the sixth video, which was under three minutes. The average runtime of these 22 videos is 7:06.

Here is the entire series of video essays on the fourth chapter:

Pirkei Avot 4:1 – Ben Zoma’s Paradoxical Characteristic Definitions
Pirkei Avot 4:2 – Ben Azzai’s Advice on Running Towards Mitzvot and Fleeing From Transgressions
Pirkei Avot 4:3 – Ben Azzai’s Advice on Denigrating Neither People Nor Objects
Pirkei Avot 4:4 – Humility & Not Profaning God’s Reputation
Pirkei Avot 4:5 – Relationships with the Words of Torah
Pirkei Avot 4:6 – Rabbi Yose on Honoring the Torah
Pirkei Avot 4:7: Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yose’s Advice on Staying Away from Judging
Pirkei Avot 4:8 – Rabbi Yishmael, son of Rabbi Yose’s Advice on Judging
Pirkei Avot 4:9 – Rabbi Yonatan’s Observations on Socioeconomics and Torah
Pirkei Avot 4:10 – Rabbi Meir’s Advice on Efforts in the World & Torah
Pirkei Avot 4:11 – Mitzvot, Transgressions, and Assemblies
Pirkei Avot 4:12 – Rabbi Elazar ben Shammua’s Advice on Elevating Respect & Reverence
Pirkei Avot 4:13 – Carefulness in Study & The Crown of a Good Reputation
Pirkei Avot 4:14 – Rabbi Nehorai’s Advice on Remaining in Dialogue with Colleagues on Torah Study
Pirkei Avot 4:15 – Theodicy, Greetings, and Social Positioning
Pirkei Avot 4:16 – Rabbi Ya’akov’s Metaphor of The World to Come as a Banquet Hall
Pirkei Avot 4:17 – Rabbi Ya’akov’s Views on Activities and Enjoyment in This World and The Next World
Pirkei Avot 4:18 – Rabbi Shimon ben Elazar on Appropriate Timing for Interpersonal Behaviors
Pirkei Avot 4:19 – Samuel the Small’s Advice Vis-à-vis One’s Enemies
Pirkei Avot 4:20 – Rabbinic Metaphors on Education & Age
Pirkei Avot 4:21 – Rabbi Elazar HaKappar on Envy, Lust, & Glory
Pirkei Avot 4:22 – Rabbi Elazar HaKappar’s Theology on Life, Death, & God’s Judging

 

Video Essays on the Third Chapter of Pirkei Avot

Having published video essays on each of the texts in the first chapter of Pirkei Avot and in the second chapter of Pirkei Avot, I am now proud to share that I have completed a series of video essays on each of the texts in the third chapter of Pirkei Avot.

This entire series on the third chapter is available in this YouTube playlist.

Here is the entire series of video essays on the third chapter:
Avot 3:1

Avot 3:2

Avot 3:3

Avot 3:4

Avot 3:5

Avot 3:6

Avot 3:7

Avot 3:8

Avot 3:9

Avot 3:10

Avot 3:11

Avot 3:12

Avot 3:13

Avot 3:14

Avot 3:15

Avot 3:16

Avot 3:17

Avot 3:18

Pre-Pesach Teachings Along with Fellow Beth David Interns

Recently, the rabbi of a synagogue reached out to its former rabbinic interns for brief teachings around Passover/Pesach/פסח and some heeded the call. As a former rabbinic intern of this synagogue, Beth David Synagogue of West Hartford, CT, ​having served as the rabbinic intern in 2007-2008, I was happy to help, especially since I particularly appreciated my experience with the rabbi, Rabbi Yitzchok Adler.

Since my colleagues knew that I had some facility with video-editing, I acceded to their request to put this video together. So, after collecting the submissions from my colleagues Rabbi Yonah Berman, Rabbi Daniel Braune-Friedman, Rabbi Saul Strosberg, Rabba Claudia Marbach, and Rabbi Stephen Belsky, I packaged it together today and am happy to share this presentation of our teachings:

New Pirkei Avot Series

I am excited to announce I have created a new series on Pirkei Avot, a collection of dozens of rabbinic wisdom sayings from many centuries ago. This series is taking place in the form of brief videos of me discussing each and every text in the collection.

Having kicked-off this series on Monday, the YouTube playlist for chapter 1 of Pirkei Avot is available here. I plan on creating separate YouTube playlists for each of the chapters of Pirkei Avot.

The series involves a new video releasing every day, Monday through Friday, so far, each of them lasts several minutes. Although I have created them for the enjoyment and edification of the residents at the senior living facility where I am currently serving as the chaplain, it is, of course, also available for other folks out there, as well 🙂