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

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


Art Videos?

If you had asked me before I started my current job as a chaplain at a senior living facility about making art videos, I would have found that to be strange. Yet, here I am, making art videos.

First Video
Of course, it started amidst the pandemic, as no programming could take place, due to the virus. I approached the building’s art specialist and she agreed to do a video with me on the artwork series in the administrative wing, about which I had been quite curious. So we made that video. Yes, we used my cell phone for the video and the lighting was atrocious, and the sound was not so great either.

Sukkah Art Video
The local JCC then had, as they have in years past, albeit smaller due to the pandemic, an art exhibit in their sukkah; however, since our seniors were unable to leave the building, our art specialist and I made a trip out there to bring the exhibit to them, as it were, resulting in this video. And, yet again, with no special lighting, no microphones, and just my phone camera, it turned out decently, yet it could be better.

Grant for Camera Equipment Boosts Production Quality
I then applied for a grant from a local committee to fund camera equipment, which yielded a mirrorless digital camera, microphones, a light, and a tripod. This provided a significant increase in production quality for our subsequent art videos.

Two Videos in the Building
We then shot two videos in the facility, one on a series of art on Jewish holidays, and one on our buildings contribution to the JCC’s artwork exhibits over the years. Both of these featured notably improved production quality due to the fulfilled grant. (If you do plan on watching the videos, I highly recommend watching them in 1080p60 quality.)

Two Videos out of the Building
We then made two further videos outside of the building, the first of which was of an art exhibit that was about to leave the Skirball Museum and the residents would have otherwise been entirely unable to catch any of it, so, just like the limited time engagement of the JCC sukkah art exhibit, we were granted exclusive access to the museum (since it was otherwise closed to the public due to the pandemic), resulting in this video. The other of which was of a series of murals that are part of the Holocaust & Humanity Center’s Cincy Upstander Project, which is available here. (Just as with the previous two videos, if you plan on watching them, I recommend watching them in 1080p60 quality.)

While we have some more lined-up that we plan to create, as we begin to open up, perhaps the need for such videos will decrease. Who knows?

November 2014 Monthly Minute

My first Monthly Minute
My first Monthly Minute
Having been inspired a few weeks ago to post videos about my work, I have begun a new project. I am calling it my “Monthly Minute”, whereby I post a video lasting 60 seconds or less wherein I describe highlights of my work in the previous month.

I just posted the first video, describing highlights of my work in November 2014, which is available here:

Since it is my first attempt at this new endeavor, it is a bit choppy and I had to edit it down a lot, but I hope to make it smoother in the future.