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Ezra Weiss and all that jazz

Either way you say it – Music Man or Man, Music! – Ezra Weiss loves jazz. His enthusiasm is contagious, his involvement is impressive. Portland can thank Ezra’s Oberlin College buddy, Zack Hickman, for suggesting that they move to Portland after graduation in 2001. Besides rave album reviews and airtime, he teaches at Portland State…

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You won’t miss meat at Aviv

When the popular Gonzo Falafel and Hummus food cart closed, customers missed its shawarma fries. Israeli-born chef Tal Caspi used to operate Gonzo outside of a brewery, but as so often happens in the food-cart world, he was forced to move. After a brief and unsuccessful relocation, Tal decided to focus his energy on new…

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A Jewish perspective on charitable giving

“Justice, justice shalt thou pursue.” ~Deuteronomy (16:20)   While charitable giving conjures up thoughts of generosity and benevolence, in Judaism the concept is a commandment, an obligation. Helping the poor and needy is a duty in Judaism. Yet beyond fulfilling physical needs, as Jews we also strive to create a better, more just world for…

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What is an ethical will?

An ethical will is a document that is written to express someone’s deepest personal values in order to pass those along from one generation to the next. It is not legally binding. This practice, though it dates back to biblical and medieval times, resurfaced in the Jewish community around the 19th century and more recently…

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How to begin writing an ethical will

Making the decision to write an ethical will can feel fulfilling, even empowering. However, sitting down and writing one can be truly challenging. The wonderful thing is that there is no right or wrong way to write an ethical will, and yours can be as simple or complex as you wish. (See accompanying article “What is…

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