Wise Words: Jewish Thoughts and Stories through the Ages

Overview

A comprehensive anthology of wise sayings, stories, and insights from the Jewish tradition addressing such topics as faith, friendship, ethics, nature, charity, kindness, marriage, death, the Holocaust, and Israel.

Wise Words celebrates the heart and soul of a people shaped by four thousand years of precepts, stories, rituals, recipes, and humor. It is an all-embracing collection of aphorisms and poetry from the Bible, the Talmud, Hasidic tales, and contemporary humor and ...

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Overview

A comprehensive anthology of wise sayings, stories, and insights from the Jewish tradition addressing such topics as faith, friendship, ethics, nature, charity, kindness, marriage, death, the Holocaust, and Israel.

Wise Words celebrates the heart and soul of a people shaped by four thousand years of precepts, stories, rituals, recipes, and humor. It is an all-embracing collection of aphorisms and poetry from the Bible, the Talmud, Hasidic tales, and contemporary humor and literature — with a special emphasis on the all-too-often-forgotten voices of women. On any given topic, you can read the words of Isaiah, the teachings of Maimonides, the mystical wisdom of the Kabbalah, passages from Grace Paley, Nora Ephron, and Isaac Bashevis Singer, along with a sprinkling of Yiddish folk sayings that often get right to the heart of any subject.

Often joyous, occasionally tragic, the material is divided by major themes, including Jewish writers' insights on life, death, friendship, family, marriage, charity, kindness, ethics, food, holidays, nature, and art. Each section is framed by the author's own recollections as a daughter, sister, wife, and mother.

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Editorial Reviews

Library Journal
New York author Gribetz has compiled an anthology of wise sayings, stories, and insights from the Jewish tradition. Inspired by the memory of her devout father, who encouraged her to see beyond male/female religious roles, she has divided her work into sections addressing such topics as faith, friendship, ethics, nature, the Holocaust, and Israel. Gribetz has taken a large sampling of works from Jewish humorists, including such gems as Zionist leader Chaim Weizmann's observation that "Miracles sometimes occur, but one has to work terribly hard for them." Citations for the passages are briefly provided. Readers can dip into this book for meditation and ponder passages that range from a paragraph to a few pages. Overall, this inexpensive paperback is a winner, especially for readers seeking inspiration in the flavor of Chicken Soup for the Soul. It will circulate well in most libraries, particularly those serving a Jewish clientele.Paul M. Kaplan, Lake Villa Dist. Lib., Ill.
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780060566937
  • Publisher: HarperCollins Publishers
  • Publication date: 2/3/2004
  • Edition description: First Quill Edition
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 288
  • Product dimensions: 5.50 (w) x 8.25 (h) x 0.65 (d)

Meet the Author

Jessica Gribetz lives with her husband and four daughters in New York City.

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Read an Excerpt

ON WOMEN
The point is not that Jewish women want equality as women with men, but as Jews with Jewsto share Jewish history to the hilt. Cynthia Ozick

ON LIFE
Getting out of bed in the morning is an act of false confidence. Jules Feiffer

ON ISRAEL
I said to my colleagues, Surrender? What is this word surrender? It has no meaning in Hebrew! Then I went to the lavatory to vomit. Golda Meir

ON FAMILY
Somewhere on this globe, every ten seconds, there is a woman giving birth to a child. She must be found and stopped! Sam Levenson

ON DEATHThere are stars whose radiance is visible on earth though they have long been extinct. There are people whose brilliance continues to light the world through they are no longer among the living. These lights are particularly bright when the night is dark. Hannah Senesch

ON ARTThere are halls in heaven that open only to the voice of song. Zohar

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