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  • abba

    n. Father, dad, daddy.

  • aliyah

    n. "Calling to the reading of the Torah." (Glinert)

  • avodah

    n. "Service and worship of God" (Eisenberg).

  • b'vakasha

    adv. "Literally, 'please'. It can be used in various ways, including "please go ahead" and at the end of a sentence as 'you're welcome'" (JPS).

  • beit knesset

    n. Jewish place of worship; "synagogue" (JPS).

  • besamim

    n. "Literally, 'spices.' It almost always refers to the spices in the spice box used for the Havdalah ceremony" (JPS).

  • burekas

    n. A Turkish pastry filled with potatoes, other vegetables, and sometimes cheese.

  • Chabad

    n. An outreach-oriented branch of Hasidic Judaism that follows the Lubavitcher Rebbe. Chabad has thousands of branches around the world, including at many college campuses.

  • chalutzim

    n. Pioneers in the building of the State of Israel.

  • chanukiah

    n. Nine-branched menorah / candelabrum used on Chanukah.

  • chiloni

    adj. (Of Jewish people or institutions) secular, not religious.

  • chutzpah

    n. Guts (positive).

  • davka

    adv. Even; despite expectations to the contrary -- often with a slightly amused or ironic feeling of "wouldn't you know it?" or "of all things" ("of all people" ... etc.)

  • eema

    n. Mother.

  • emunah

    n. "Faith"; sometimes contrasted with practical striving in the material world.

  • Eretz Yisroel

    n. Israel.

  • falafel

    n. The deep-fried chick pea ball itself.

  • goy

    n. A nation, but not the Jewish nation.

  • halevai

    interj. If only.

  • Haredi

    adj. (Of an individual, institution, or practice) associated with strictly Orthodox (non-Modern Orthodox) Jews.