My Passover seder this year was spent in the company of the small Reform Jewish community in Lisbon, Portugal.
Thanksgiving used to be a day unto itself; now we have a whole Thanksgiving season! Americans' shopping habits brought us catchily-named, add-on "holidays" like Black Friday, Small Business Saturday, and Cyber Monday.
When the Rabbis divided the Torah into its 54 parashiyot (portions), they generally arranged for each portion to begin with a unique or otherwise significant word that would in some way summarize major themes of the entire section.
When someone asked a friend of mine what his daughter enjoys most about living in Israel, he explained that she loves the way the country’s secular rhythms synch seamlessly with religious time in a way that doesn’t happen in North America. By way of example, he described Shabbat and holidays as characterized by closed shops, quiet streets, and low-key television programming.