The Indelible Mark of Pearl Harbor

Pearl Harbor

Dec 7, 1941, “a date which will live in infamy“, was the day of the attack by the Japanese on Pearl Harbor during World War II. Today, we remember that date and its losses: Continue reading

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Chanukah: The Festival of Lights

A Chanukah menorah (or chanukia) (CC0 image via Wikipedia)
A Chanukah Menorah, or Chanukia (CC0 image via Wikipedia)

Chanukah, also known as the Festival of Rededication, or the Festival of Lights, is an eight-day holiday that generally falls sometime in December (in the Hebrew calendar, the 25th of Kislev). This year it starts on Sunday evening, December 2 and ends in the evening of December 10th. It celebrates the rededication of the Holy Temple after the successful revolt of the Maccabees against the Seleucid Empire. To rededicate the Temple, oil was needed to relight the menorah inside, and there was very little left – only enough to burn for one day.  However, the oil that was used burned for eight days, and to celebrate this, a festival was created – Chanukah. Continue reading

Happy Thanksgiving!

Happy

From GST student Md. Zahidul Haque, on the origin and celebration of Thanksgiving:

Americans celebrate this public holiday as a harvest festival on the 4th Thursday in November each year in the United States. The First Thanksgiving day was celebrated by the Pilgrims in the new world in 1621 after their first harvest. After the USA became independent, Congress recommended one day each year as Thanksgiving for the whole nation to celebrate. Canadians also celebrate this day on the second Monday of October. Up to today, we believe that this day is for the celebration of Pilgrims and offering foods to Native Americans. It is also a day of gratitude as well the respect to Native Americans for teaching the Pilgrims how to cook. At that time the pilgrims couldn’t survive without the help of Native Americans.

In New York City, my family and I celebrate this day by joining with our child’s school or family or friend’s homes. For this year’s celebration, we will get together in a common place for dinner. We will make traditional food like carved turkeys, pumpkin pie, corn, vegetables, fruits, as well as some other Indian fried dishes, then serve each other and have dessert at the end of the meal. So every year we are waiting for this day to celebrate.

Wishing everybody a happy, safe, and delicious Thanksgiving weekend!

All Touro library locations will be closed 11/22-11/23.

How does Daylight Savings Time affect us?

Coming this Sunday, you have to set your clock one hour back again!

clock
Photo by Lukas Blazek on Unsplash

The controversial policy of daylight saving is one of the most widespread in the world, “used by 77 countries and regions with a combined population in excess of 1.5 billion”1. The biggest argument in favor of this policy was the impact on electricity consumption. But have you ever wondered how changing the time abrupt affects us,  both mentally and physically?

Comment if you agree or disagree with daylight savings.

Continue reading

WOW! What a conference

IMG_1235
Lots of experts attended the conference, including Steven Bell (left) from Temple University. I have to confess that I had not seen him at first when I took this photo 🙂

Since starting Open Touro, Touro College’s Open Education Resources (OER) initiative, we have become increasingly involved with OER. You can read more about what we have one so far here.

This past week, we attended OpenEd, an annual conference on Open Education which was held at the US Niagara Falls. Over 350 presentations, posters, roundtables, lightning talks, and panels were given. The presentation themes included accessibility, assessment, pedagogy, economics, sustainability, social justice, and the future of OER. The more than 850 people who attended consisted of faculty members, deans, provosts, librarians, school teachers, and even students, which just illustrates how big and important this movement has become. We have returned with notebooks full of ideas, thoughts and practical next steps. Continue reading

Celebrating Sukkot

A sukkah from inside. (From Wikimedia user Muu-karhu)
A sukkah from inside (via Wikimedia user Muu-karhu)

After the solemnity and introspection of the High Holy Days, Sukkot, the Festival of Booths, is always a treat. Like the proverbial light at the end of the tunnel, I look forward to Sukkot every year because this holiday, unlike Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, is an unaltered celebration.  After the Exodus from Egypt, the ancient Jews traveled the wilderness for forty years before reaching the land of Israel. They lived in small huts called “sukkot” during this time. The holiday of Sukkot commemorates those temporary dwellings: Orthodox Jewish families build a small hut, or Sukkah, outside the house where they eat all meals for the seven days of the holiday. Many Orthodox Jews also sleep outdoors in the Sukkah. A typical Sukkah would look something like this:

(source)
(source)

Continue reading

Yom Kippur: A Day of Atonement

Jews praying in the synagogue
Maurycy Gottlieb: Jews Praying in the Synagogue on Yom Kippur

Yom Kippur, aka The Day of Atonement: this represents the time when Jews will have their fate decided. How much money will be earned for the year, what a person’s health will be, as well whatever is supposed to happen to a person in their life during the year.  People of course pray that everything that will happen should be good for the person.

I should note that on this occasion, the prayers are only directed between people and G-d, not between people and other people.  Any “offense” that take place between people is not covered by Yom Kippur.  The individuals involved need to ask for pardon from each other.

Yom Kippur is the end of this Holy time of year, which began with Rosh Hashanah.  This is a ten day period when forgiveness is asked from G-d as well as from “man”. As it says in the Liturgy, on Rosh Hashanah G-d writes down what will be and on Yom Kippur that decree is sealed.

This year, Yom Kippur will begin the evening of Tuesday, September 18th and conclude the evening of Wednesday, the 19th.

Contributed by: Edward Schabes, Library Assistant, Midtown

(Updated with 2018 dates and new picture.)

A Moving Rosh Hashanah Prayer

May Your New Year Be Sweetened with Happiness
(Image via Flickr; CC BY 2.0)

Rosh Hashanah, in Hebrew, means Head of the Year. It is one of Judaism’s holiest days and begins this year the night of Sunday, September 9th until the night of Tuesday, September 11th. There are many moving prayers and traditions designated for the High Holy days, but I would like to highlight one prayer that goes back to approximately the 10th or 11th century called U-Netaneh Tokef (“Let us tell the mighty holiness of this day”). Continue reading

Welcome Back to Bay Shore!

Librarians posing
Hello from your friendly librarians at Bay Shore:  from left to right, Heather, Annette, and Joan.

This fall will be a fresh start for many of our students at the Touro School of Health Sciences in Bay Shore. But whether you are a returning student or just starting out, please keep in mind that the library has many resources for you. We can assist you in learning how to locate books, find full-text articles, and conduct research. While on campus, you may benefit from our quiet study spaces, research computer center, and of course, your friendly librarians. Continue reading

The 17th of Tammuz and the Three Weeks

Destruction of Jerusalem by Ercole de' Roberti
The Siege and Destruction of Jerusalem by the Romans Under the Command of Titus, A.D. 70 (David Roberts)

This post was originally from 2014 and has been updated with this year’s dates.

Sunday, July 1st marks the beginning of the period known to Orthodox Jews everywhere as “the Three Weeks.” In the Hebrew calendar that date is the 17th of Tammuz, which  commemorates the day the Romans broke through the walls of Jerusalem, finally ending its long siege. Continue reading