Kashrut on a Plate

The Odd end of Kashrut

LSJS June – July 2011

From the LSJS website:

When is a fish no longer fit for a banquet? When it comes to kosher turkey, is it all gobbledygook? Why is whisky risky? And, why is cheese a veritable kosher mouse-trap?

It was once on the London Beth Din’s official kashrut list until the then Chief Rabbi turned away his turbot at a banquet. Explore why this superb and expensive fish is not considered edible for Jews and get to grips with its fascinating anatomy.

You might have thought that the tasty turkey was not subject to allegations of kosher foul play but you’d be wrong. Examine in-depth why this bird has a difficult time proving its kosher credentials and see how it has managed to live another day in the kosher kitchen.

It’s hard to imagine how there could be anything controversial when it comes to cheese. But take a look at the mix of milk and meat that goes into your cheddar and you’ll wonder if you’re crackers to eat it at all.

It’s not to everyone’s taste but whisky remains a firm favourite when it comes to a ‘L’Chaim!’ Find out why the casks that contain whisky are potentially problematic and see how mixing your sherry and Glenfiddich is never a good thing.

Session 1: Why is Cheese Kosher?

Session 2: The Turbot Conundrum Session 3: Why is Turkey kosher?

Session 4: Why is Whisky kosher?

An Introduction to Kabbalah

The Origin, Authenticity and Function of Kabbalah

LSJS May - July 2011

Part 1: Ein Sof, Sefirot and Shevirat HaKeilim

Part 2: Tachlit HaBeriah and the Origins of the Zohar 1

Part 3: The Origins of the Zohar 2 and Zohar as Midrash 1

Part 4: The Zohar as Midrash 2 and Chassidic Classics

The Maharal of Prague

A Study of His Works and Ideas

LSJS February – March 2011

From the LSJS website:

R. Harvey Belovski will introduce you to the thought of the Maharal, (Rabbi Yehudah Loew), the brilliant leader of 16th century Jewish Prague and master of Jewish philosophy and mysticism. The Maharal’s writings offer a fascinating synthesis of rationalism and kabbalistic thought and have guided modern readings of the Talmud and the Torah commentary of Rashi, as well as contextualising Jewish history and the purpose of the Torah itself.

Course Materials

Session 1: Introduction to the thought of the Maharal

Session 2: Gur Aryeh commentary to Rashi

Session 3: Be'er HaGolah: Defending the Tradition

Session 4: Maharal's Theory of Numbers

Session 5: Maharal's Approach to Education / Devarim

Session 6: Maharal's Metaphysical Approach to Aggadah

Session 7: The Influence of the Maharal