Torah Sparks

United Synagogue (USCJ) is proud and delighted to bring you Torah Sparks, with insights and learning materials on the Parasha (Torah portion) of the week. Torah Sparks is produced by the Conservative Yeshiva in Jerusalem.

Each week there will be a Dvar Torah - a discussion on some aspect of the reading, by CY faculty, alumni and friends; a Vort - a short thought from Chasidic rebbes or other thinkers about some point in the text; and Table Talk - questions to stimulate discussion on the Parsha around the Shabbat table. Torah Sparks is available here on the Conservative Yeshiva's Shiurim Online Beit Midrash website, as well as by subscription to weekly graphical emails. Please select the Parasha you would like to see - it will display articles from each year. A printable PDF is linked at the end of each week's presentation.

Dr. Joshua Kulp

About Dr. Joshua Kulp

Dr. Joshua Kulp, Rosh Yeshiva, is co-founder of the Conservative Yeshiva in Jerusalem where he has taught Talmud and halakhah for the last 20 years. He is the author of the recently published book Reconstructing the Talmud (Mechon Hadar, 2014) as well as the The Schechter Haggadah: Art, History and Commentary (Schechter Press, 2008). Beginning in 2001 and continuing through 2013, Dr. Kulp authored a commentary in English on the entire Mishnah, which served as the basis for the Mishnah Yomit project. In 2013 Dr. Kulp began the Daf Shevui program, the study of one daf of Talmud per week and has so far completed a commentary on Tractates Sukkah and Megillah and has begun work on Tractate Ketubot. Dr. Kulp was raised in Margate, New Jersey, where his family was active in the Conservative Movement. He spent his summers at Camp Ramah in the Poconos, Camp Ramah in Canada and for the last ten summers, he has served as the scholar-in-residence at Camp Ramah in New England. Dr. Kulp made aliyah in 1994 and currently lives in Modiin with his wife, Julie Zuckerman, and their four children. In his spare time, he is an avid triathlete and runner and has completed three Ironmans.

Dr. Joshua Kulp

Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Gimmel, Part 1

To sponsor Daf Shevui, please click here. Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Gimmel, Part 1 Reading for Sunday, November 4 Avodah Zarah 73-1     Introduction This mishnah deals with the halachic topic of a forbidden substance becoming mixed with a permitted substance.  The question is how much of the forbidden substance must be in the mixture […]

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Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Bet, Part 5

To sponsor Daf Shevui, please click here. Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Bet, Part 5 Reading for Thursday, November 1 Avodah Zarah 72-5     Introduction Today’s sugya continues to discuss whether downward flow counts as a connecting link.   ת”ש המערה מכלי לכלי את שמערה ממנו מותר הא דביני ביני אסור ש”מ נצוק חיבור Come and […]

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Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Bet, Part 6

To sponsor Daf Shevui, please click here. Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Bet, Part 6 Reading for Friday, November 2 Avodah Zarah 72-6     Introduction Today’s section contains some concrete rulings and stories concerning Gentiles either sharing drinking instruments with Jews or Jews selling wine to non-Jews.   אמר להו רב חסדא להנהו סביתא כי כייליתו […]

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Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Bet, Part 4

To sponsor Daf Shevui, please click here. Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Bet, Part 4 Reading for Wednesday, October 31 Avodah Zarah 72-4     Introduction Today’s section continues to discuss whether downward flow serves as a connecting link for yayin nesekh.   תנן נטל את המשפך ומדד לתוך צלוחיתו של עובד כוכבים וחזר ומדד לתוך צלוחיתו […]

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Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Bet, Part 3

To sponsor Daf Shevui, please click here. Avodah Zarah, Daf Ayin Bet, Part 3 Reading for Tuesday, October 30 Avodah Zarah 72-3   Introduction The mishnah that we will learn today opens a long discussion about a concept called “flow” or “nitzok” in Hebrew. The issue is regarding liquid that flows down into a lower liquid. […]

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Daf Shevui

You may have heard of Daf Yomi - study a page of Talmud a day. As wonderful as this popular endeavor is, the pace is extremely fast, a pace that is difficult for even advanced Talmud students to keep up with. So we've decided to slow the pace down a little bit, to chew our proverbial meal a bit longer, to digest more fully and to cover one page of Talmud per week.

Every day you will receive in your inbox (or however you so choose to receive the material) 1/6 of that week's daf (page) of Talmud. The Hebrew text will appear in full, with an English translation and an explanation. Shabbat is going to be reserved for review of the week's daf. We think that this material is particularly appropriate for hevrutot, synagogue study groups and other such shared learning experiences. Talmud is always best learned in a group and Daf Shevui is no exception.

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