Category: Talmud Bavli

How Beer Became Acceptable for Havdallah in the Babylonian Talmud

You can only use wine for Havdallah, right? That’s what the Talmudic rabbis thought…until a certain story happened. And then beer became legitimate to use for this ritual. Featuring Professor Jordan Rosenblum, the Belzer Professor of Classical Judaism, the Max and Frieda Weinstein-Bascom Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and Chair of […]

Demons and the Four Cups of Wine at the Passover Seder

The 25th episode of the podcast/video series is now out! Featuring Rabbi Alana Suskin, the co-founder and co-director of the Pomegranate Initiative, as well as a senior editor at JewSchool.com, we discuss the susceptibility to demons of the four cups of wine at the Passover Seder, according to the discussion of the rabbis in the […]

How Many Cups of Wine to Drink at a Mourner’s House – 10 vs 14?

The newest release in JewishDrinking.com’s podcast & video series features Rabbi David Fried discussing with our host the question of how many cups of wine are to be consumed at a mourner’s house. Rabbi Fried currently serves as part of the Judaic Studies faculty at Hebrew High School of New England and graduated from Yeshivat […]

Drinking on Purim in The Talmud

With Purim coming up in just two weeks, this episode is the second in JewishDrinking’s Purim 2020 series, with a third episode to be published next week. This week’s podcast/video episode features Professor Jordan Rosenblum, the Belzer Professor of Classical Judaism, the Max and Frieda Weinstein-Bascom Professor of Jewish Studies at the University of Wisconsin-Madison, […]

Rava, Mordechai, and Purim-Drinking

With Purim right around the corner, it’s time to gear up for “the drinkingest day” on the Jewish calendar. To that end, this week’s podcast/video episode features a discussion with Rabbi Ayalon Eliach on the topic of the most famous statement related to Purim-drinking: “.אמר רבא: מיחייב איניש לבסומי בפוריא עד דלא ידע בין ארור […]

Rav Papa, The Talmud Bavli’s Beer Baron

The newest podcast (& video) episode is now out on “Rav Papa, The Talmud Bavli’s Beer Baron”, featuring Professor Jordan Rosenblum, the Belzer Professor of Classical Judaism at University of Wisconsin, whose book is hitting bookshelves today. The new book, Rabbinic Drinking: What Beverages Teach Us About Rabbinic Literature, is intended to introduce readers to […]

Beer, Wine, and Bal Tashchit in the Talmud with Professor Tanhum Yoreh

The newest episode of Jewish Drinking: The Show is now out! With featured guest Professor Tanhum Yoreh, Rabbi Drew Kaplan discusses Rav Pappa’s statement in the Talmud that, if one could drink beer or wine, yet chooses wine transgresses the rabbinic prohibition against wastefulness (Shabbat 140b). Having written his doctoral dissertation on bal tashchit, Professor […]

Were Grapes the Fruit that Adam and Eve Ate?

Although I know you’re probably thinking “What does the fruit that Adam and Eve ate have to do with drinking?” And that’s a great question! Wine/Grapevine? It turns out there is a rabbinic text that associates wine with this fruit (bBerakhot 40a & bSanhedrin 70a-b): תניא רבי מאיר אומר אותו אילן שאכל אדם הראשון ממנו […]

Drinking & Praying? How Do the Rabbis Approach Drunken Prayer?

With Purim upon us this week and the attendant drinking that occurs, it’s fitting to wonder about the appropriateness of praying while intoxicated (or its inappropriateness). So: what do the Talmudic rabbis have to say about it? Tannaitic Exemption One clear tannaitic text that discusses this issue finds that one should not pray while drunk […]

“והשתיה כדת”: Considering Rabbi Meir’s Reading [Megillah 12a]

Recently, someone pointed out to me a curious drinking text related to Purim (Megillah 12a): והשתיה כדת – מאי כדת אמר רבי יוחנן משום רבי מאיר כדת של תורה מה דת של תורה אכילה מרובה משתיה אף סעודתו של אותו רשע אכילה מרובה משתיה “And the drinking was according to law” (Esther 1.8) – What […]

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