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The Big Mockers Jewish Comedy Troupe Official Website


Featuring Comedians Jerry Kahn, Chad Kaplan, David Kilimnick, Raizel Penn, Shmuel Breban, Joan Weiner, Jeff Lax, Avi Liberman, David Rosner, Rabbi Mordy Katz, and Edward Mullayev, The Big Mockers is the only Shomer Shabbos, Frum stand-up and sketch comedy group. The Big Mockers performs clean, kosher comedy for all audiences, including Orthodox Jews.
718 263-JESTer (718 263-5378)
PO Box 6805
FDR Station
New York, NY 10150

Judaism's Position on Comedy

"To every thing there is a season, and a time to every purpose under the heaven... A time to weep, and a time to laugh." (Kohelet 3:1,4) A commentator adds "And sometimes there is a time to make others laugh."

'Rabbi Baruqa of Huza often went to the marketplace at Lapet. One day, the prophet Elijah appeared to him there, and Rabbi Baruqa asked him, "Is there anyone among all these people who will have a share in the World to Come?" Elijah answered, "There is none." Later, two men came to the marketplace, and Elijah said to Rabbi Baruqa, "Those two will have a share in the World to Come!" Rabbi Baruqa asked the newcomers, "What is your occupation?" They replied, "We are jesters. When we see someone who is sad, we cheer him up. When we see two people quarreling, we try to make peace between them."' (Ta'anit 22a)

Sarah said, "G-d has brought me laughter, and everyone who hears about this will laugh with me." (Bereshit 21:6)

"Hashem will yet fill your mouth with laughter and your lips with shouts of joy." (Job 8:21)

"Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then, it was said among the nations, 'Hashem has done great things for them.' Hashem has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy." (Shir HaShirim 126:2-3)

Before the great sage Rabba began his lecture, he would crack a joke, the rabbis would laugh, and then he would sit with awe and reverence and begin his lecture (Pesachim 117a, Shabbos 30b).

"From jesting purpose is brought to wisdom, for if there were no silliness in the world, neither would there be wisdom in the world. Indeed, it is a responsibility upon every person to experience a bit of jesting and to know her. For there is a greater purpose lent to wisdom that comes from out of clowning around as there is greater illumination lent to light that comes from out of the darkness. For without darkness, there is no light, and the light would serve no purpose. Rabbi Shim'on once said to Rabbi Abba: "Come and see! The mystery of a thing is not illuminated except within the context of jesting, which awakens it from the other dimension, and if not for that illumination, there would be no empowerment or purpose to wisdom. And the more jesting, the more clarity is brought to wisdom. Moreover, if there would be no jesting found in the world, there would be no wisdom found in the world. And thus did the Grandfather, Rabbi Ham'muna, always begin his mystery teachings for the clan with several jokes, for through jesting does wisdom have any purpose." (the Zohar, Volume 3, Folio 47b) Rav Hamnuna the Elder told jokes to his colleagues, the members of Rebbe. Shimon bar Yochai's inner-circle (Zohar 3:47b).

"Humor is that thing that ushers a person’s mind from a place of constricted consciousness to a place of expanded consciousness." (Baal Shem Tov)

"This is the reason for the tremendous merriment of Purim: the drinking, the joking and the clowning-around. Rebbe Nachman wrote many, many times that we have to constantly maintain a happy frame of mind.The Rebbe noted, however, that since so many upsetting things happen in life, it's impossible to stay happy without some jokes and joking around. One has to work hard to be happy and stay happy. "It seems that it's impossible to be happy without acting a bit silly."This is why many of the great tzaddikim had "court jesters" among their chassidim - to maintain a joyous atmosphere. Nothing is as detrimental to serving G-d as depression. Because our exile is so bitter, so filled with troubles - physical, emotional, financial - the only way to build happiness is comedy. Even the Sages of Mishnaic and Talmudic times told jokes." ( Likutey Halakhot, Nefilat Apayim 4:5-6)

“What soap is to the body, laughter is to the soul.” (Jewish Proverb)


Jerry Kahn's Jewish Comedy Website