Thursday, July 15, 2021

Beis Hamikdash Experience is now online

By popular demand from my mother and others of the general public, the virtual Beis Hamikdash presentation that I helped create for the Daf Yomi siyum of Maseches Yoma is now on my Vimeo page.

Tuesday, July 6, 2021

Siyum on Yoma by Ki Heim Chayeinu

Coming up this Thursday the daf yomi will be finishing Maseches Yoma. To celebrate this momentous siyum, the organization Ki Heim Chayeinu (a division of the National Agudah) put together a program that includes a number of speakers, entertainers, and me. Read on for a behind-the-scenes look at some of the material I prepared.

Sunday, June 13, 2021

Beis Hamikdash Models as seen on Inside Artscroll

In the last post I linked to an interview I did on Inside Artscroll. During the interview I showed two of the 3D printed models that I designed to teach about the Beis Hamikdash. One of the models was made of sandstone and the other was made of steel. Read on for a description of how these models are printed.

Friday, June 4, 2021

Inside Artscroll Interview

Artscroll's new edition of Avodas HaKorbanos takes the reader through a day in the life of the Beis Hamikdash with an elucidated text, explanatory notes, and diagrams. I contributed to this volume by helping out with the diagrams. For that, I was invited to be interviewed on Inside Artscroll, their video podcast series where, as they like to say, "The books you read and the people who write them come to life!" I had a chance to talk about this book, how I got started with Artscroll, and about my personal work on the Beis Hamikdash.

Saturday, March 20, 2021

The Ship Has Arrived!

 In early March, after some brief delays, the ship carrying The Original Second Temple arrived off the coast of New York.

TOST shipping container location on March 8, 2021

Saturday, January 30, 2021

TOST is about to be served!

After many years in the making, my book on the Beis Hamikdash is about to be released in stores, BH! The Original Second Temple is a hard cover, full-color compendium of my work on the Second Beis Hamikdash. It features over 270 pages of detailed explanations, more than 130 diagrams and illustrations, and numerous source citations and footnotes to make the study of the Beis Hamikdash accessible to all.

The Original Second Temple is being printed and distributed by Feldheim. The printing has just been completed in Israel and the book is due to arrive in America in late February 2021. Please visit the updated Book tab for more information and for special offers on the abridged Digital Edition available now!

Sunday, September 20, 2020

High Holiday Custom Minifig

 In honor of the upcoming yom tov here is a custom minifig I built using Cinema 4d and Bricklink Studio.

Wednesday, August 5, 2020

Happy Tu B'Av!

On this day the Temple completed its annual harvesting of firewood. It was known as the Day of the Breaking of the Hatchet.

Wednesday, July 29, 2020

לבי במזרח ואנכי בסוף מערב

A quote from Yehudah HaLevi (poet and philosopher, 1075-1141) as we approach the 1,950th Tisha B'Av still on the western side of the Wall.

Monday, July 13, 2020

Rebuilding A Personal Jerusalem

 During this time of the year as our hearts and minds turn to Jerusalem and the Temple, I have been working on rebuilding our holy city in my own small way. Brick by brick, over 3,000 in all, I assembled a microscale Lego® model of the Old City of Jerusalem as it would have looked during the heyday of the pre-Herodian Second Temple era.

Tuesday, June 30, 2020

New Temple Mount Model

It has been nearly two thousand years since Mount Moriyah has seen a Jewish Temple, but thanks to the efforts of Yitzy Kasowitz and jbrick, we can now see the Temple and surrounding areas in miniature. As a follow-up to jbrick's successful Holy Temple model they are now offering an add-on model of the entire Temple Mount.

Monday, April 27, 2020

Yom Kippur Avodah Slideshow Excerpt

During this past Aseres Yemei Teshuvah I was invited by Rabbi Abba Zvi Naiman to bring my Yom Kippur Avodah slideshow to the Bais Medrash of Ranchleigh. In this presentation I walk through the daily schedule of the Beis Hamikdash on Yom Kippur and show what happened and where.

Thursday, March 26, 2020

Monday, December 23, 2019

The Miracle of Chanukah

On Chanukah we celebrate the miraculous defeat of the Syrian-Greeks by the Chashmonaim. Part of the miracle was that the Jews found a single flask of oil still sealed with the mark of the Kohen Gadol. Opinions vary as to where this flask was actually discovered.

Monday, April 29, 2019

SRO in the Azarah on Erev Pesach

     Once upon a time, toward the end of the Second Temple era, King Agripas wanted to take a census of the Jewish people. He told the Kohen Gadol to keep track of how many Pesach offerings were brought that year in order to estimate the number of people. The Kohen Gadol collected one kidney from each offering, and at the end of the day they found that they had counted six hundred thousand pairs of kidneys (1.2 million in total), which was double the number of people who left Egypt. Even this was not an accurate estimate, because it did not count those who were tamei or who were far away from the Beis Hamikdash (and did not participate in the korban Pesach). Furthermore, this was only a count of the korbanos, not the people, for there was not a single korban that did not have at least ten people in the group that was going to eat it. They called that year the “Crowded Pesach” because there were so many people.

(summarized from Pesachim 64b)

This Gemara indicates that on one particular year, over one million korbanos were processed in the Beis Hamikdash on erev Pesach. In this post I would like to examine how many people could reasonably fit in the Azarah at one time and how to reconcile the result with our Gemara.