Goblins and Golems and Angels, Oh My
Candy and costumes are fun for children this time of year, and you too can tap into this energy as an opportunity to learn about Jewish mysticism and folklore.
Judaism has a rich history of mysticism and folklore. Think golems, dybbuks, demons, and the like.
Here are a few of our favorite storybooks that feature (non-scary) spirits and creatures:
By Zoë Klein
Long ago, in the town of Knottingham, there were three little goblins.
Knotty was naughty, Knotsalot was no good, and Notnow was no good, no how, not then and not how!
More than anything else, these mischievous goblins liked to tangle children's hair! Find out how the children fought back, and how their tangled hair led to the unlikely invention of a braided bread called challah in this modern original folktale.
A boy arrives in America, where everything is big, crowded, strange, and scary. He builds a golem, a mud monster from Jewish folklore, to protect him from the big kids next door. But he soon learns he doesn’t need the golem for protection. What else can a golem do in America?
Graphic-novel style illustrations provide a fresh approach with kid appeal, and an Author Note introduces the Jewish value of tikkun olam, repairing the world.
By Maxine Segal Handelman
Each week, the Shabbat angels visit homes around the world, blessing the ones that honor the Shabbat. May next Shabbat be just like this one! Tov, the angel of good, will say. But if they find a home where Shabbat is dishonored, then the opposite angel, Rah, gets a turn: May next Shabbat be just like THIS one! A modern retelling of a classic folktale.
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