Life in Quarantine: Surviving the Zoomiverse

Welcome to the Zoomiverse, Bruins! By now you’ve probably figured out that this quarantine isn’t going anywhere (and—neither are you). That’s okay! We’re all in this together. It’s definitely tough navigating our new day-to-day world, but our HA’AM Team is…

How to Explain Judaism to Those Who Ask

“So, am I really going to Hell?” I asked, with the nonchalance of a person inquiring about the weather. It was a Monday, and I was walking back from class with my best friend, Samantha, who was Christian.  She shifted…

Meaningful Clothes: Spiritual Attire Then and Now

When I was a kid, I wasn’t very enthusiastic about going to synagogue, but I especially hated having to get dressed up for temple. Putting on fancy clothes just reinforced the formality and discomfort of the whole experience. If prayer…

The American-Jewish Songbook: The Civil Rights Movement

When I think back to my earliest Jewish experiences, it’s hard not to think about music. Passover was the euphoria of “Dayenu”, Yom Kippur the devastating elegance of “Avinu Malkeinu”. I remember birthdays and bar mitzvahs and weddings–lots and lots…

10 Ways to Give Charity With an Empty Wallet

“Another GoFundMe.” You wonder aloud if you should dip into your savings. “Donate money to Wikipedia!” You close the tab and eye your wallet warily. Luckily, there are ways to give to others without spending an arm, a leg, and…

The Mishkan: A Lesson in Unity

The Midrash to Proverbs opens with a quote from the Book of Job: “Where can wisdom be found? Where is the source of understanding?” (Job 28:12). In the Midrash, Rabbi Tanhum ben Hanilai suggests that these questions refer to King…

In search of the Israeli Bob Dylan

Israel is a place characterized by multiple conflicts. Situated in one of the most politically unstable regions on the globe, the nation-state of Israel is comprised of ancient populations and recent arrivals who have sedimented its modern society into layers…

6 Ways to get Involved in the Los Angeles Community

Challah for Hunger Challah for Hunger is a national charity that bakes and sells challahs on college campuses. The organization donates all the proceeds toward ending hunger in local communities and spreading awareness of the current problems of food shortage…

An Ethical Kashrut Certification—Tav HaYosher: Where Are They Now?

Discourse around labor circles in California has, in the past decade, been stung with major shifts in equity. This change has even seen local light on UCLA’s campus, specifically in regards to boycotts from the custodial staff who felt they…

Finding Female Empowerment in Judaism, Part II: Women’s Customs

In my prior article, Finding Female Empowerment in Judaism, Part I: The Stories of the Bible, I highlighted several Bible stories that demonstrate and exude female empowerment. I will now continue the series by examining women’s spiritual roles in the…