18

Welcome and congratulations on your search and efforts! Beyond the suggestions above (first and foremost to approach the rabbi in a local synagogue or Chabad house), there are a number of websites which I have used at different points in time with a focus on beginners. They might be helpful to access Jewish content and start learning regularly. Aish Ohr ...


12

A few ideas: Get into "round-table" discussions related to the Exodus somehow, in which everyone is encouraged to voice their opinions on the subject at hand. For example, citing the midrash about how the redemption was deserved by the Jews for not changing their "Jewish" attire and names can incite a socio-historical discussion about the role of ...


12

I've been a Torah reader for about 45 years, and have read Megilla for about 20 years. This is tough to give you an exact assessment, here, because there are several factors here. So, take what I write as my own "best professional" opinion. I'm going to assume throughout that you can both read and pronounce Hebrew well. (I've been listening to numerous Bar ...


11

Strangely enough, I have found that those who aren't interested will tend to go with the flow if you state from the outset that you're going to read through the Hagadah. It will be dry. It may be boring. But if they are mature enough (not particularly opposed to ritual, and your question implies that they are not), just give everyone a Hagadah and say you're ...


11

Report This "answer" records what I did this year and how it worked out. I drew from several suggestions in other answers here. Some context: the two seders had different but overlapping groups of attendees. One has always been a "when do we eat?" seder; the other spends more time but replaces a lot of the traditional content with other readings and ...


11

First of all congratulations for wanting to grow in your Jewish learning. Learning Talmud means different things. One approach is to learn the structure of the Talmud, its way of approaching issues, the various elements of logic it uses, key elements of language (the Talmud is written in Aramaic). This is best accomplished by picking a few pages and learning ...


10

Yes, such classes exist, and are recommended for potential bridegrooms. Speak to the rabbi of any orthodox synagogue, and he should be able to direct you someone who can tutor you in this field. So, I suspect, can the head or mashgiach of any bes midrash. Covered topics are hilchos nida and v'sasos, k'vod ishto, and others, though the exact list varies from ...


8

I think if people go into it with the attitude that they're going to be bored and it's just a ritual, don't try shoving things down their throats. One gimmick might be to "beep" out anyone if they mention Moshe's name (the original haggada made a point of leaving it out; we've since thrown in a paragraph in which it pops up once). Another idea is to outline ...


8

It seems like you wanted some practical tips. I have run many successful sedarim with differently engaged Jews. There are a couple of things that I do to engage people who may not be initially interested in sharing their thoughts. Go around the table and have everyone finish a sentence "slavery is..." "freedom is..." Do some prep work and print out a ...


8

There are a couple of things that I do to engage people who may not be initially interested in sharing their thoughts. Go around the table and have everyone finish a sentence "slavery is..." "freedom is..." Do some prep work and print out a different quote for each person at the table. It can be from literature, torah, art whatever. Last year I chose ...


8

The National Jewish Outreach Program offers free Hebrew classes in several cities designed to get people started. These are weekly classes for 5 or 6 weeks designed to teach you how to pronounce the words in front of you (so you can stop relying on transliteration) and some very basic vocabulary. I don't know where in Pennyslvania you live; they at least ...


8

This answer is from my personal experience. I made a siyum hashas on mishna for my bar mitzvah before ever opening a gemara. We (my father and i) learned with Perush Kehati. When there was something ambiguous in the mishna that was explained by the gemara, Kehati would bring it. We didn't have to look it up in the gemara, which was good, because i had not ...


7

http://www.yutorah.org/ has halacha shiurim on a huge range of topics, both in depth and very practical. Just click on the "halacha" tab. Highly recommended. Also http://www.kolhaloshon.com/, from the more yeshivish side of things, with lots of shiurim from R' Osher Arieli and other Ram"im in the MIr Yeshiva.


7

My brother in law who became a Mohel apprenticed for a while with a Mohel who was doing it for many years. When the Mohel was confident in his abilities he gave him the go ahead to do it on his own. I have also heard that many times a new Mohel after apprenticing begins by doing a Bris on his own child. I am pretty certain that most Mohelim begin this way....


7

Machon Lev in Jerusalem is one such option The Jerusalem College of Technology (JCT) – Lev Academic Center is the second largest academic institution in Jerusalem. It is fully accredited by Israel’s Council of Higher Education and specializes in high-tech engineering, computer science, industrial management and health sciences combined with a ...


6

HaRav Yitzhak Yosef Shelit"a holds (Yalkut Yosef 246) that as long as there are Jews mixed in the group of teaching, it is permitted.


6

Probably the best option is to learn from a mohel or get good advice from a good mohel. The best and most friendliest Mohel I know is Rav Paysach Krohn, this web site has his number and email. I know that he's busy doing britot and lecturing, but, at worst, if he can't train you, I'm quite certain he will advise and, if appropriate, recommend you to the ...


6

You can try http://www.dafyomi.co.il/, choose any masechtah, and then scroll down. They have links for Tosafot for most masechtot, but unfortunately not for Bava Basra. And for books, you can try this wonderfully clear sefer called שערי תוספות, if you don't mind Hebrew.


6

When a beginner learns Gemara, one of the greatest setbacks is the lack of "prerequisite" knowledge. Many concepts are preestablished, including the 13 middos of learning Torah (gzeira shava, binyan av etc. etc.), and even more so there are different styles of sugiyos, how a question is established, how a terutz is attempted and so on. The seasoned learner ...


6

In addition to the fine answer by mbloch, I'd like to touch on a few points not mentioned there. Be sure not to grow too fast. You're in a tough situation, living in a family which I assume is not interested in keeping Torah. You also have a non-Jewish father, which complicates things. Remember that there is no shame in growing slowly, tackling each ...


6

I don't know if any of these three is exactly what you are looking for, but I'm sure that they would be extremely helpful for your purposes. A Sefer that often quotes various Teshuvos and their explanations of the Gemara is Daf Al Hadaf (edited by R. David Abraham Mendelbaum, R. Joshua Lefkowitz, and R. Abraham Noah haLevi Klein). A list of Shu"t ...


6

Hebrewbooks.org is available to everyone who is on the web. When you open the 'shas' tab, There a Sefer on the mefarshim list called שדה צופים which quotes many Sheilos Uteshuvos the likes of the Radvaz, Chavos Yair, Rambam and many more. I was recently learning Nazir which has very little Mefarshim and I found a wealth of information from the above which I ...


5

Rabbi Jonathan Bailey can be contacted by e-mail using the mailbox rilbash on the server gmail.com


5

When I was younger I used to sit, as the top answer suggests, with a Jastrow, looking up every word I was uncertain of. I found this approach slow and frustrating, and after doing it for a couple of years, I still hadn't progressed to the point of being able to open up a random gemara and read it. What really enabled me to get really good really quickly was ...


5

As I understand it, the reciting of the Haggadah and the various "different things" we do is to incite others to ask questions. So make it clear from the start if there is anything, anyone wants to know, then arrange some sort of signal ahead of time to recognize an interruption in the reading, just so that they can easily ask their question in a timely ...


5

You may want to consider using Hagada - Mi Yodeya? Our companion to the Passover Hagada, featuring questions practice, lore, and thought spanning the Seder, from preparations to closing. That should make things interesting. :)


5

I recently found the Foreign Language Service's complete Hebrew 1965 course with audio online. It may be of use to you: [FSI Hebrew]


5

To start: For some excellent tips on someone starting conversion, see this question and its answers: First steps for someone considering conversion As DoubleAA noted in his comment, studying conversion is something that is usually, but not always, done at a personal level. That being said, there are many classes one can go to about Judaism that are given ...


5

www.dailyhalacha.com by Rabbi Monsour is my favorite. It is relevant to everyday life. It is delivered by Rabbi Monsour who is truly qualified. It is available daily and also has archives of previous days.


5

Well, seeing that no-one else has answered so far... I don't know about Hassidic Yiddish specifically but the standard textbook for learning Yiddish is Weinreich's "College Yiddish". I'm sure there are many helpful resources online; I would start with YIVO and WikiBooks. Once you've got some basics and you want to practice, you can check out Der Forvetz, ...


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