Tag Archive: review
Educators and Parents around the world have all been discussing how we can make Torah—and Jewish Education for that matter—relevant to our students. After all, it is increasingly challenging to present the timeless treasure that is a Torah lifestyle to kids who are being raised with distractions ranging from an iPad to a Nintendo Wii game. To that end, I’m always into testing new technology to see how it can be used to make Torah relevant. I believe that the good folks at TorahLive are on to something! In addition to their live presentations that they have made on several continents, I recently got a chance to review their very first DVD entitled, “Mezuzah: The Ultimate Connector.” This DVD does not disappoint. It is a highly professional DVD and is replete with information that can be enjoyed by young and old and by the scholar to the layperson.
Truth be told, the Mezuzah is seemingly the one item that adorns the homes of devoutly pious Jews as well as the home of an unaffiliated Jew. However, to your average Jew there is a lot of mystery and unknown laws when it comes to this small yet meaningful religious item. Mezuzah: The Ultimate Connector makes all of the complicated Jewish laws that revolve around a Mezuzah both relevant and exciting. It utilizes great graphics to bring to life quotes from the Torah to the Talmud as well as modern technology such as Google Earth to make such a critical Mitzvah something that any Jew can appreciate and understand!
Moreover, in addition to a comprehensive overview of both the Halachos and Hashkafah behind Mezuzah, I found this DVD to be real and honest as it even covers such topics as yes—Mezuzah fraud!
Additionally, this DVD is even offered in a Pro-Version which can very much act as a springboard to classroom discussion. All in all, I’d encourage any Educator let alone Parent to purchase this DVD as there is something that will inspire and educate everyone in your class/family.
Disclosure: I received a complimentary review copy of Mezuzah: The Ultimate Connector. I did not receive any financial reciprocity from this post.
Throughout the world, young and old alike enjoy the festive bonfires of Lag B’Omer and the delicious cheesecake of Shavuot. That said, we need to perform the act of Sefiras HaOmer, counting the Omer (all the way from the holiday of Passover to Shavuot), to reach these dates. And yet, understanding the mechanics and spiritual significance of this 49 day period is an ominous task.
Enter the new iPhone App called Sefiros!
This App is based on the bestselling book Sefiros, from the acclaimed author and community leader Rabbi Yaacov Haber. As an aside, I was privileged to briefly meet Rabbi Haber in person at last year’s Kishor Social Media Conference where we both lectured. From his remarks it was clear to all, that he is both a revered scholar—as well as someone who is keenly aware of and in use of the technological tools that we are afforded in 2011. Hence, it is only fitting that he created an App that does more than simply helps one count the Omer. In fact, Sefiros seems to continue where the book left of in that it provides daily Kabbalistic insights as well as alerts that allow the user to discover and implement the unique spirituality found in each day of the Omer!
I’ve tested this App the past couple of days and found that from design to content the Sefiros App really shines!
Unfortunately, there are some Apps out there in which the user experience is outright sloppy. I’m pleased to report that the Sefiros App is beautifully designed and is easy to use. Plus, it features a useful reminder to count the Omer complete with the text of the proper blessing. It even automatically adjusts to your timezone and location. This function is useful for anyone who may find themselves traveling on business or the like but still doesn’t want to get confused with what day of the Omer to count. What’s more, in line with today’s web 2.0 world that we live in, the App will allow one to share on Facebook and Twitter!
Best of all, the Grow version of this App, allows one to truly actualize this special time period. One can set various alerts that will remind a person to perform or be conscious of actions with G-d, their spouse or even to work on a character trait. In so doing, despite the busy world that we live in, one can have an App to help them not only with their physical health (such as LoseIt) but with their spiritual wellbeing as well!
If you are looking for some meaning after Passover or simply want to finally understand the Omer, I recommend you download the Sefiros App.