Resources for the High Holidays on the Touro College LibGuides

The Touro Libraries research guides provide High Holiday resources, not only in the library guide known as parasha ha-shavua (the weekly torah reading) and Hagim (festivals), but also through additional guides on various topics, including links to online resources for archival research and education. In 2020, Rosh Hashanah falls on evening of September 18th.

The High Holidays within the context of all the Jewish holidays in the organization of the Jewish calendar are represented throughout Touro College Library Guide resources.

Image by Ri Butov from Pixabay 

For example, one sketch raises the question of whether the symbolic foods eaten on Rosh Hashanah is merely symbolic for the rational contemplation vs. theurgic supernatural mystical act championed by the Hasidim, which the Rambam as a deontological ethicist might warn risks being a form of delusional theurgic magic.

A second link examines the metaphor of the book on the High Holidays particularly in the Unetanneh Tokef (a Hebrew prayer by Rabbi Amram of Mainz) sung in the synagogues, that states to the effect, “On Rosh Hashanah it is written, on Yom Kippur sealed and implies based on a Talmudic text, on hoshanah rabbah the angels deliver the blueprint to Hashem’s heavenly Temple archive” and the importance of the reverence and cherishing of text in general in general for Judaism.

A third link explores both in Powerpoint form related to the guide on the Jewish arts as the last slides are fine art representations of this event in Genesis 22, and a written sketch of the akedat yitchak known as the “Binding of Isaac” which is chanted on the second day of Rosh Hashanah, raises the question of Providence (hashgahah pratit) vs. free will (behira) and G-d’s foreknowledge (yediah) and is the topic of midrashim found in the Cairo Geniza.

A fourth link of a Powerpoint considers the afternoon reading known as maftir yonah on the day of Yom Kippur, from the perspective of Biblical archeology excavations of ancient Ninevah, cartography, and close textual analysis, among other topics. Ethics is a theme of the book of Jonah in that the Ninevites must repent. On Yom Kippur, we repent our ethical failings in the communal Al chet prayer where one gives a din ve-heshbon (accounting) before the heavenly court in business ethics and in general Jewish ethics, ethical monotheism that Avraham revealed when he left Ur of Chaldea. Up until today in online ethics by applying the laws of forbidden gossip (Hilchot issurei loshon ha-ra) by the Chofetz Chaim and applied in case law to social media.

Photo by Esther Wechsler on Unsplash

The fifth set of resources relate to the book of Koheleth chanted on the festival of Sukkot, which raises the important question of the nature of time in all its dimensions. One link shows that striving to dwell poetically in time is the essence of being in the sukkah, whose construction requires that the roof (sakh) allow one to see the stars causing wonder, expressed in King David’s Psalm eight. Other links examine Koheleth themes in the afterlife, and further ideas of Nachmanides knowledge of shemitah ha-olamot.

This post was contributed by David Levy, Chief Librarian, Lander College for Women

What is Schizophrenia?

This blog post contains discussions of schizophrenia. This post is for informational purposes only and should not be used as a substitute for professional medical advice, diagnosis, or treatment. For questions related to advice, diagnosis, or treatment please contact a licensed medical provider.

Growing up around someone with schizophrenia gave me a front row seat to the disorder and the toll it can take on an individual and their loved ones.

The Merriam-Webster Dictionary defines schizophrenia as “a mental illness that is characterized by disturbances in thought (such as delusions), perception (such as hallucinations), and behavior (such as disorganized speech or catatonic behavior), by a loss of emotional responsiveness and extreme apathy, and by noticeable deterioration in the level of functioning in everyday life.”

sketch of woman in profile
Image by ElisaRiva from Pixabay

The definition seems very straightforward, but, to anyone who has cared for someone coping with the disorder, schizophrenia can be all-encompassing and an individual voyage into uncharted territory. There is no cure for the disorder, but treatment and management of symptoms is possible through medication, talk therapy, and a strong social support system.

I was inspired to make a LibGuide about the disorder, not only to add to our library’s collection of LibGuides, but also to educate the general community about the disorder. Schizophrenia is more prevalent than the average person may realize. In fact, 30% of the homeless population in the United States is estimated to have schizophrenia, schizoaffective disorder, or bipolar disorder. The number of people in prisons with schizophrenia is also shockingly high, with an estimated of 24% of municipal jail inmates suffering from the disorder. Without access to psychiatric hospitals or care, many schizophrenics go untreated and end up wandering the streets, sleeping on subways, or becoming incarcerated, usually for a non-violent crime.

Please feel free to visit the LibGuide on Schizophrenia and share your thoughts. I added a simulation video section to the LibGuide so that people may be able to experience what a patient experiences during their symptoms and have a better understanding of the disorder.

This post was contributed by Annette Carr, Librarian at the School of Health Sciences at Bay Shore

References

Merriam-Webster. (n.d.). Schizophrenia. In Merriam-Webster.com dictionary. Retrieved April 30, 2020, from https://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/schizophrenia

Ramsay, C. E., Goulding, S. M., Broussard, B., Cristofaro, S. L., Abedi, G. R., & Compton, M. T. (2011). From handcuffs to hallucinations: Prevalence and psychosocial correlates of prior incarcerations in an urban, predominantly african american sample of hospitalized patients with first-episode psychosis. The Journal of the American Academy of Psychiatry and the Law, 39(1), 57-64. Retrieved from https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3612963/

Wiltz, T. (2019). ‘Gravely disabled’ homeless forced into mental health care in more states. Retrieved from https://pew.org/2ULfUAb

Start the semester off right: 4 tips for academic success

(CC0 image by Jay Mantri)
(CC0 image by Jay Mantri)

Whether you’ve been at Touro for a few semesters or you’re joining us for the first time, there a few key steps all students should take to make sure you’re set up to do your best. Writing and research is an inescapable part of most college courses, but it can sometimes be a frustrating process. The good news is that the library is here for all your research needs, from finding sources and understanding new information, to academic writing and creating citations. In fact, a recent report released by the ALA found that, “students who receive library instruction as part of their courses achieve higher grades,” and gain “confidence with the research process.” If that sounds good to you, make sure that you follow these tips! Continue reading

Touro College of Dental Medicine Welcomes Its Inaugural Class

(CC0 image via pixabay<\a>)

Touro College recently opened the doors to a brand-new dental school, located on the NYMC campus in Valhalla, New York. Over 100 eager soon-to-be dentists had their orientation last week, and I was invited to come up to let them know about the many library resources that are available to them. Even if you’re not a dental student, most of the following applies to you too! Here’s a summary: Continue reading

Essential Steps to Academic Success

(CC0 image by Jay Mantri)
(CC0 image by Jay Mantri)

Whether you’ve been at Touro for a few semester or you just joined us this Spring, there a few key steps all students should take to make sure you’re set up to do your best. Writing and research is an inescapable part of most college courses, but it can sometimes be a frustrating process. The good news is that the library is here for all your research needs, from finding sources and understanding new information to academic writing and creating citations. In fact, a recent report released by the ALA found that, “students who receive library instruction as part of their courses achieve higher grades,” and gain “confidence with the research process.” If that sounds good to you, make sure that you follow these tips! Continue reading

Research Guides: More than just books

Scholar in study, 1700, by Johann Michael Bretschneider (National Museum of Wrocław)
Scholar in study, 1700, by Johann Michael Bretschneider (National Museum of Wrocław)

The Lander College for Women has been one of our most enthusiastic adopters of our Research Guides available through LibGuides. A blog post in 2014 linked 10 of the unique power points available on these guides, but there’s even more great information available.

Most libraries around the world post library guides or pathfinders on their websites that contain the standard gathering of relevant websites, particularly helpful specialized databases, bibliographies of related books, and links to chat or email reference. However what makes Touro’s library guides unique are not only the tailor-made PowerPoint presentations for classes offered at LCW, but the narrative introductions and unique informative essays, charts, outlines and exercises included on our large collection of Jewish studies guides. Continue reading

Reflect, Set, Go

courtesy of Touro College Libraries Facebook page  https://www.facebook.com/tourolibraries
Courtesy of Touro College Libraries Facebook page https://www.facebook.com/tourolibraries

We are getting closer to or in the midst of inter-session, that time between semesters. While you may not realize it, this time period can be significant. It marks either a rest before continuing on in your studies, a break to reflect on all you’ve learned before you head to graduation, or even a time before you head out to conquer a new goal (like enrolling in graduate school or obtaining your Bachelor’s degree). It is the time to recharge the batteries and to take stock of one’s accomplishments.  Perhaps even to get ready for something entirely new! Continue reading

From the Reference Desk: Jewish Business Ethics

Ethics049webIV
(CC image by Orietta.Sberla)

Students often come into the Touro Libraries looking for books and journal articles for their research. They are familiar with the stacks of books and even some of our major databases, but few know about an online research guides that combines information on print and electronic sources into one convenient package. I am talking about our LibGuides. The LibGuides are a collection of research guides on a variety of topics. Recently, one of our LibGuides came in very handy when a student came in looking for information we had on Jewish Business Ethics. Continue reading

Put in your Pocket & Save it for Later. Apps can Make College Life Easier.

PT student using I-pad in the library.
PT student using I-pad in the library

Mobile apps are becoming increasingly popular and offer users a great way to get organized, access resources and improve productivity.  The Touro College App Corner highlights some of the top apps for students and faculty.  There are tons of free apps that cover a variety of functions from research, reading, writing, note-taking, and other essential tools for studying.  Let us know your favorite apps for school and be sure to check out our App Corner!

Continue reading

Library Staff Profile: LCW Librarian Dr. David B. Levy

Wmns bldng skylight 2008 10 03 020 - CopyDavid B Levy, librarian at Lander College for Women, loves serving LCW students, whom he believes possess great derekh eretz (manners), middot tovot (character traits), and pleasantness. David cherishes Torah lishma (learning for its own sake), as described in the TC Philosophy of Education LibGuide. Continue reading