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Your monthly Phone and Learn
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Issue 25
November 2011 
Cheshvan 5772
Your Direct Line to Jewish Inspiration

Dear Reader,


Taste the Inspiration As October turns to November, we embark on an entire month without festivals or holidays - four full weeks of work or study stretch ahead of us! Don't be disheartened though - instead, consider it the perfect time to take advantage of the packed events calendars offered by so many Jewish organisations this month!

As in previous years, PaL will be represented at the Yeshiva and Sem fairs in both London and Manchester on 1st-2nd November. If you know someone who's planning on attending, do direct them to the PaL stand, where they can discover how to brush up on their Jewish textual skills or knowledge in the run up to yeshiva or seminary, completely free of charge.

Warm wishes
Judy Silkoff
Programme Coordinator 
Round Up...  
An Overview of Events in the Community


Kesher Logo Kesher, 933 Finchley Road, London NW11 7PE 


'Men of the Millenium' - Great Jewish Lives. A series of six biographical sketches, beginning Wednesday November 9th at 8.30pm. £5 per lecture. Contact connect@kesher.org.uk for more information.  



seed logo seed, Mowbray House, Edgware HA8 8DJ


'The Communication Game' - an interactive evening for couples with Rabbi Malcolm Herman. Includes supper from Met Su Yan. Thursday 12th November at 8.15pm. £28 per couple. For more information or to book email  debbie@seed.uk.net.


JLE logo JLE, 152-154 Golders Green Road, NW11 8HE    


'Self-Esteem and Modesty in a Modern World' - with guest speaker Dr Lisa Aiken. Tuesday 22nd November at 9.15pm. Women only. For more information email  judy@jle.org.uk.   

Ask the Rabbi
with Rabbi Harvey Belovski 
Questions from the PaL Mailbag...

Q: Why is the Hebrew month of Cheshvan sometimes referred to as 'Mar Cheshvan' (meaning bitter)? I understand that there are no holidays or festivals that fall in this month, but as far as I've always understood, it's not an especially sad month either. How do you explain the significance of the extra name?"


A: The names of the Jewish months we use today date from the beginning of the second Temple period, some 2400 years ago.  The eighth month of the year is called Cheshvan - it is the only month in which no special days fall, something which contrasts starkly with the previous month - Tishrei - which is replete with festivals.  This may be the reason why Cheshvan is commonly known as 'Mar-Cheshvan' - 'bitter Cheshvan'.  However, it is also possible that this name derives from the fact that the great flood began in Cheshvan; other tragic events also occurred in this month.  Another interpretation of 'Mar' is 'drops of water' - it's the month when the rains should begin in Israel.  Finally, the word 'Mar' also means 'Sir' - since Cheshvan is the month in which the resolutions we have made during Tishrei are put to the test, the rabbis may have 'upgraded' the month's title to reflect this.

New Releases

Rabbi Frand on the Parashah
Rabbi Frand on the Parashah
Rabbi Yissocher Frand 

The Family Shabbos Book
The Family Shabbos Book
         Gold, Gerstein & Pollack

A Time to Laugh
A Time to Laugh, A Time to Listen, III
Rabbi Yehoshua Korland
Israel Bookshop
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With thanks to PaL's Judaica supplier Torah Treasures, a 10% discount is offered on every book purchase made for your PaL partnership!

Torah Treasures
020 8458 8289  
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About Phone and Learn 
Phone and Learn (PaL) is a division of Partners in Torah*, USA www.partnersintorah.org, a unique Jewish identity-building initiative committed to fostering unity among Jews of all backgrounds. PaL matches Jews who want to know more about their heritage with a friendly, knowledgeable tutor for an hour a week of Jewish study and discussion, over the phone.
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