Rabbi Shmuley Unleashed

Rabbi Shmuley Unleashed


Rabbi Shmuley Boteach is host of the award-winning national TV show, Shalom in the Home on TLC. He is also the international best-selling author of 20 books, including his most recent work, The Kosher Sutra: Eight Sacred Secrets for Reigniting Desire and Restoring Passion for Life (Harper One). His book, Kosher Sex, was an international blockbuster, published in 20 languages, and his recent books on the American family, Parenting With Fire and Ten Conversations You Need to Have With Your Children, were both launched on The Oprah Winfrey Show.

War Cry of the Values-Based Parent

  Touché. The man has a point. America as a nation would probably get an overall A in the success department but a D minus in getting along with each other. With half the population divorced, families disintegrating all around […]


The Morality of Gay Adoption

    On Tuesday night, December 14, Rosie O’Donnell and I will be conducting a public conversation in New Jersey about families and kids, the celebrity culture and the affects of fame, balancing work and career, and learning how to […]


The Centrality of Marriage in a Cynical Age

    So forty percent of Americans in a Pew Research and Time magazine poll think that marriage is caput. And who can blame them? Marriage in our time is such a bore that eighty percent of married couples use […]


An Outsider Comes Home to 5000 Chabad Colleagues

7 November 2010 – Tonight I attended the international Chabad emissary conference – the Kinus Hashluchim HaOlami – for the first time in sixteen years. When I was the Rebbe’s emissary at Oxford University I came annually. But with my […]

Gay Obsession Has Marginalized Evangelicals Politically

My debate Monday night in Charlotte, North Carolina at the Southern Theological Seminary was insightful as to why Evangelicals are increasingly politically marginalized. For the record, I am a fan of Evangelicals because they raise strong, faith-based families, serve disproportionately […]

How Obama Lost his Magic

The erosion of Barack Obama’s popularity has lessons in it for every American who wishes to remain interesting and current, both professionally and personally. The real story in this election is not that America has no jobs, that the economy […]

Rise of the Religious Charlatans

Oh G-d no. Not another Bible codes book. And this one launched in a full page ad in The New York Times highlighting how in May 2008 Oprah Winfrey sent a Bible code to Barack Obama that he would become […]

A Spiritual Night In Hebron

Israel is a magical country, but to experience one of its greatest wonders you have to travel out to what the world calls the West Bank and the Bible calls Judea and Samaria. There, its crown jewel is the city of Hebron, first […]

The Religious-Industrial Complex

  Come to Israel for Sukkot and there are many things you’ll see at night on Ben Yehudah Street, Jerusalem’s premiere recreational thoroughfare. You’ll experience outstanding cafés and mouth-watering restaurants, families with strollers and tourists buying souvenirs. Wait till night […]

The Religious-Industrial Complex

Come to Israel for Sukkot and there are many things you’ll see at night on Ben Yehudah Street, Jerusalem’s premiere recreational thoroughfare. You’ll experience outstanding cafés and mouth-watering restaurants, families with strollers and tourists buying souvenirs. Wait till night and […]

Ahmedenijad, Media Rock Star

Once a year the media and the international community embarrasses itself by treating the rambling inanity of a madman as something of near-divine import. Mahmoud Ahmedenijad is the dangerous clown who blames the West for manufacturing outrage over women being […]

As the Economy Crumbles, Obama Makes Middle East Peace

Recently, on my radio show, Congressman Eric Cantor of Virginia, the Republican Whip, argued that President Obama seems largely unmoved by domestic concerns, particularly when it comes to jobs and the economy. The President is a foreign-policy addict, even as […]

When Pastors who Burn Bibles Become Celebrities

  So, is that what it takes to become a celebrity these days? Threaten to burn someone else’s Bible, and declare their religion to be satanic, and you are instantly the center of the news?   I wonder who is […]

If an American President Were Muslim, Would we Care?

So Brian Williams asks President Obama what he thinks of the fact that one fifth all Americans believes he is a Muslim. The President gets defensive and sheepishly responds that this issue was put to bed during the campaign.

My Purpose in Debating Christopher Hitchens on the Afterlife

Is atheism necessary for religion? Rabbi Zusya would say yes.   The great Russian Hassidic Rabbi, who lived more than two hundred years ago, was one day teaching his students when he emphasized the necessity of atheism and agnosticism. His […]

Status Symbols and the Black American Express

As a seventeen-year-old student at Rabbinical college, a riddle was put to me. A beggar is invited to a billionaire’s home for dinner. The homeless man has never had such scrumptious food. He throws his entire being into slopping down […]

Extravagant Weddings and Bar Mitzvahs Humiliate the Jewish Community

How embarrassing.   Last Sunday the LA Times ran an article about extravagant Jewish Iranian weddings in California that exposes our community as a bunch of shallow, boastful, materialists who think the purpose of a marriage ceremony is to tell […]

Russell Simmons is Wrong about the Ground Zero Mosque

I still remember, Russell, when you came to my debate with Rev. Al Sharpton, nine years ago, in New York City. You struck me then as a man of warmth and openness. In that spirit I offer you this response […]

When Psycho Flight Attendants Become Heroes

Steve Slater. American hero.   The JetBlue flight attendant who blew a gasket and cursed out his passengers chuted out of his plane and straight into mythic American status as a workingman’s hero. Go get ’em Steve. Stick it to […]

Time Magazine’s Bizarre Assault on Large Families

Not sure whether Americans are becoming more materialistic and self-absorbed? Look no further than Time Magazine’s recent carnival of narcissism and celebration of selfishness.  

Tom Friedman’s Soft Spot for Terrorist Fadlallah

It wasn’t all that surprising to hear that Britain’s Ambassador to Lebanon, Frances Guy, publicly mourned the death of the arch-terrorist and spiritual head of Hezbollah, Sheikh Muhammad Hussein Fadlallah. After all, Britain is the country whom, we now know, […]

Kaddafi’s Ship to Gaza, and His Ark in New Jersey

As of this writing, a Libyan ‘aid’ ship that was on its way to challenge Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza and further inflame the world against the Jewish state for keeping arms out of the hands of Hamas terrorists has […]

Lebron James and What We Lose When We Win

The image I will remember most from the 2010 World Cup is Netherlands coach Bert van Marwijk pulling off his silver medal in disgust as soon as he left the podium. Welcome to a brave new world where winning is […]

Al Gore’s Moral Confusion

To Al Gore’s detractors he is many things. An annoying gasbag. A self-righteous know-it-all. A braggart who invented the Internet. A fraud who promoted global warming as an international hoax.  Such exaggerated criticism would explain why many believe the as-yet […]

What McChrystal’s Firing Says about American Values By Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

It seems I’m one of the few Americans who was appalled at the firing of General Stanley McChrystal. In a rare moment of unity, pundits on both the left and right supported the President relieving the general of command. The […]

Michael Jackson’s Life Could have Been Saved

This Friday marks one year since the passing of Michael Jackson. His legacy remains highly controversial. On one side there are ardent fans who consider him the central inspiration of their lives. On the other there are strident critics who […]

The Never-Ending Lynching of Sholom Rubashkin

So much for Christian charity. Sister Mary McCauley, the former pastoral administrator at St. Bridget’s Catholic Church in Postville, Iowa, who provided support for families affected by the Agriprocessors raid, publicly condemned the complete acquittal of Sholom Mordechai Rubashkin on […]

BP, Kaddafi, and Britain’s Oil Comeuppance

 Leading British politicians have been running to defend BP from unwarranted American attack and “bashing Britain.” First we stole their tea. Now we disparage their oil. The nerve.  

Comments on My Real Views on Breastfeeding Children

Dear friends, Over the weekend our office received many emails from angry women saying I had attacked breast-feeding. One woman even said I had equated breast-feeding with adultery, which has to be one of the most flagrant acts of misrepresentation […]

Helen Thomas and Open Season on Jews

Helen Thomas’s stomach-turning comments about the Jews returning to Germany and Poland, where six million were gassed and cremated into piles of ash, are striking for their racism and insensitivity. Whether she said them out of senility or anti-Semitism is […]

Gays Have a Right to Serve their Country

Every person has a right to serve his country, gays included. All have a right to serve their country openly without hiding who they are. It’s kind of odd that so many heterosexuals who are not prepared to make that […]

Did the Lubavitcher Rebbe Con the World?

My review of Samuel Heilman and Menachem Friedman’s new biography of the Lubavitcher Rebbe, Rabbi Menachem Mendel Schneerson, was recently published. In it, I reject as bizarre their central thesis that the Rebbe was not passionate about Judaism for the […]

The Provocative ‘Peace’ Flotilla that Ended in Tragedy

  Judaism’s highest value is human life. Every life. There is no difference between a Jewish life and a Palestinian life. All are of infinite value before G-d. All are equal. As a Jew and as a Rabbi I proclaim […]

Rabbi Shmuley and Wyclef Jean

Rabbi Shmuley visited Wyclef Jean to talk about his support of Haiti, the importance of family dinners ( ) and more!

Rabbi Shmuley and Wyclef Jean

 Rabbi Shmuley and Wyclef Jean discuss Haiti, Shmuley’s Turn Friday Night Into Family Night Initative, music and Shmuley’s newest book Renewal: A Guide to the Values-Filled Life plus more..  

Is a Giant Mosque at Ground Zero Justified?

Correction: An earlier version of this post incorrectly claimed that the Ford Foundation was helping to fund the mosque at Ground Zero. We regret this error. Tempers are heating up in the New York City area over the plans by […]

Open Letter to J-Street after their Attack on Elie Wiesel By Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

Pity Jeremy Ben-Ami, the hapless head of J-Street, the we-condemn-Israel-constantly-because-of-how-much-we-love-it lobby.   In the recent tension between the Obama Administration and the Jewish state over Jews building in Jerusalem, the pro-Israel camp was represented by Elie Wiesel whose full-pages ads […]

Religion’s Summer of Discontent

Word on the street is that the bomb placed in Times Square, near the headquarters of Viacom, which owns Comedy Central, may be in response to a South Park episode that portrayed the prophet Muhammad in a bear costume. If […]

My Meeting with Pope Benedict

I had my meeting with the Pope today at his Wednesday audience. Let me first give you an idea of the setting. There were approximately fifteen thousand people from all over the world gathered in St. Peter’s Square speaking an […]

When a Pope Needs Friends By Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

Since the public announcement of my upcoming meeting with Pope Benedict this Wednesday at the Vatican, courtesy of my friend Gary Krupp, many of my close Jewish friends have expressed not approval but disappointment. ‘They blamed the pedophile priest scandal […]

Condemn His Report, But Welcome Goldstone By Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

I was horrified to hear that there were South African Jews objecting to Judge Richard Goldstone attending his grandson’s bar mitzvah. Blocking a fellow Jew, let alone a grandfather, from a family’s religious celebration because of his opinions on Israel […]

JP Morgan Chase Lectures America on the Sanctity of Contracts

According to Frank Rich of the New York Times, Wall Street is a bigger threat to the United States than Al Qaida. It’s an exaggeration, of course, but conveys the degree to which some of the smartest people in the […]

Does a Kosher Butcher’s Fraud Mandate a Life Sentence?

At middle age I have come to accept my limitations. Although I like to have an opinion on almost everything, I am conscious of the fact that I am not a legal scholar and do not understand all the complexities […]

A Fallible Pope, an Imperfect Church By Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

A Fallible Pope, an Imperfect Church By Rabbi Shmuley Boteach The only institution worse at PR than Israel is the Catholic Church. Never in my life have I seen such a formidable world power handle a crisis more catastrophically than […]

Obama and the Deafening Silence of American Jewry

When it came to protecting the right of the Libyan Ambassador to the UN living immediately next door to me in Englewood, my Democratic Congressman, Steve Rothman, found his voice, issuing a three page press release about a deal he […]

Rabbi Shmuley’s Thoughts on Lindsey Lohan and Jesse James

When asked about Lindsey Lohan and Jesse James Rabbi Shmuley Boteach said the following: On Lindsey Lohan Rabbi Shmuley commented:  “It is absolutely a tragedy to watch a young women who is kind hearted and talented implode before our very eyes. While the news […]

Obama’s Hospitality: A Question of Character By Rabbi Shmuley Boteach

This Monday President Obama hosts his second White House seder in as many years. As a Jewish American I am grateful to the President for highlighting the festival of Jewish emancipation and peoplehood. But given a choice, I would readily […]

The Tyranny of Perfection

The advent of Passover and Easter, which always fall around the same time, beckons a deeper discussion about one of the principle differences between Judaism and Christianity. In essence it is the difference between a values system based on struggle […]

Obama’s Bullying of Israel

Maybe someone at the Obama Administration can explain what’s going on. When it comes to tyrants who have dismantled their nation’s democracies and thrown their political opponents in jail, like Hugo Chavez, President Obama hugs them with both arms. And […]

Why America Has No Chief Rabbi

In my eleven years living in England I often observed, as did many others, that Anglo-Jewry lacked the vibrancy and innovation characteristic of American Judaism. The absence of an electrifying sense of Jewishness and communal dynamism was a subject much […]

When Court Jews Defend Moral Cowards

Of late it’s been a tough time for those working to prevent genocide. Darfur has been off the world’s radar screen for months. Then there’s the poor Armenians. It wasn’t enough that 1.5 million were murdered in a genocide perpetrated […]

Was Haiti Punished for Sin?

Last week I was honored to speak to the Jewish community of Venice at the Chabad House, which hosts thousands for Shabbos meals, and to the extremely warm and welcoming main community. Having just returned from Haiti, I addressed the […]

Haitian Apocalypse and a Bold New World

(Photos and Videos of Rabbi Shmuley’s trip are available here) Port-au-Prince, Haiti – Nothing can prepare you for Port-Au-Prince. Not watching the devastation on CNN for a week. Not viewing a Time magazine photo montage of blue-tinged bodies in rigor […]

From Messiah to Mortal: The All-Too Brief Divinity of Barack Obama

A year ago Barack Obama was walking on water. Today he’s treading just to stay afloat. A year ago his soaring oratory enraptured a nation. A year later his speeches cannot lift him passed a fifty percent approval rating. How […]

Changing Englewood’s House of Terror into a Home of Jewish Values

Press reports this week stated that I was seeking to buy the Libyan compound next door to me in order to establish an international center for Jewish values. These reports are accurate. Aside from wanting to push the Libyans out […]

Congressman Rothman: Support Englewood and Oppose the Libyan Mission?

Congressman Steve Rothman was one of the most courageous voices in opposing Libyan dictator Muammar Kaddafi from staying in Englewood. Since then, however, he seems to be making the curious decision of identifying me, a constituent, Rabbi, and father of […]

Mortgage Ignominy at JP Morgan Chase

In the heart of New York City, if you listen closely, you’ll hear a severe sucking sound, as if some magical and invisible vortex is pulling in all that surrounds it. Amazingly, it doesn’t swallow up your scarf, your briefcase, […]

In Lockdown at Newark Airport

Sunday, January 3, 2010, 11pm – I’m sitting at Newark airport waiting for my entire family – my wife and nine children – to disembark from an aircraft that landed hours ago. They arrived from Chicago where we all attended […]

The Alternate-Reality Decade

If you would have invested one hundred dollars in the stock market in January of 2000, by December of 2009 it would be worth just ninety. This has led some writers to describe the past ten years as the lost […]

Kaddafi Back in My Backyard

Like many people these days, I am a busy man. But that did not stop me from taking off several weeks of my professional life to fight Muammar Kaddafi’s plan to take up residence directly next door to me this […]

Why Christians Refuse to Hate; My Experiences in Mugabe’s Zimbabwe

Visiting Zimbabwe can be a heart-wrenching experience. It is a beautiful land of warm and soft-spoken people. But hovering over the landscape at all times is the specter of extreme poverty and political oppression. The poverty is merely tragic. But […]

Interview with Arthur Mutambara – Deputy PM of Zimbabwe

Lying at the heart of southcentral Africa, Zimbabwe sits between the Zambezi River to the North and Limpopo River to the South. A country ravaged by HIV Aids, political unrest, unemployment, poverty and food shortages, Zimbabwe undoubtedly has a long […]

Sabbath in Zimbabwe and Rabbi Shmuley’s Observations

Day 5 of Rabbi Shmuley’s Visit to Africa with Christian Relief Organization ”Rock of Africa”. We spent our Sabbath in Victoria Falls, Zimbabwe. Dennis Prager and I made a Friday night Sabbath dinner for our Christian fellow volunteers from Rock […]


Last night we left Victoria Falls and drove two hours to the most beautiful tree lodge in the middle of a Safari game park. We slept in tree houses. This morning, at 5:30am, took a two hour safari. Saw Cheetah, […]

Transformation in Zimbabwe

I am someone who uses the expression ‘life-transforming” very sparingly because very few things in life are. Change is something that requires constant effort and constant practice. It doesn’t come cheaply. But I will use the expression to describe what […]

Why Barack is Becoming Boring

For the first time in his presidency Barack Obama has, according to a Gallup poll, fallen below a fifty percent approval rating. It’s not hard to see why. No, it’s not because he’s spending too much money. There seem to […]

The British Dare to Determine Who is a Jew

Every once in a while a story comes along so jolting that it is scarcely believable. One such story was that which appeared in the New York Times of all places this past Sunday about how the Jews’ Free School […]

Government Funding is the only Future for Jewish Day Schools

The single greatest injustice facing American parents today is that they are financially forced to send their children to schools not of their choosing. If you want to understand the level of unfairness you need look no further than my […]

Interview with Jon Gosselin this Sunday

This Sunday I’m going to be conducting an intimate conversation with Jon Gosselin at the West Side Jewish Center in Manhattan. America has to start having serious conversations about fame. 

Why Israel Should Reject American Economic Aid

Over the weekend I read Startup Nation, the new book about why Israel has emerged as an unlikely global leader in high-tech. Even if its authors Dan Senor and Saul Singer were not my friends and, in the case of […]

Elie Wiesel, Mehmet Oz, and Cory Booker Join Me to Discuss Values (and Jon Gosselin listens in)

Last night our organization, This World: The Values Network, hosted a fascinating discussion entitled, “Values to Heal America” featuring Prof. Elie Wiesel, winner of the Nobel Peace Prize, Dr. Mehmet Oz, America’s doctor, and Mayor Cory Booker of Newark.

30 Rock Blog

I just returned from Houston, Texas, where I gave three lectures. Place was hot as a tamale. When I returned I heard from several people that Tracy Morgan had mentioned something about me on 30 Rock on NBC. I had […]

Decline and Fall of the Nobel Peace Prize

By now we’ve all heard the criticisms of President Obama receiving the Nobel Peace Prize just a little too early. But Judaism and Jewish values offer a unique perspective on the controversy that others have missed. Let me explain by […]

Children who Grow Up on Stage

America continues to be gripped by Jon and Kate Gosselin whose marriage has now gone belly up and whose TV show seems to be following suit. After TLC informed Jon that he will no longer play a significant role in […]

Rabbi Shmuley’s Live Chat regarding The Michael Jackson Tapes

Rabbi Shmuley Boteach was online with readers on Friday, Oct. 2, at 1 p.m. ET to discuss his book, The Michael Jackson Tapes, which is an account of his recorded conversations with the pop star as his spiritual advisor […]

Jimmy Carter’s Price Tag

You’ve got to admire Jimmy Carter. No matter how wrong he is, no matter how many times he is refuted, no matter how inane his ramblings, he just keeps on coming back for more. Forget the fact that he was […]

The Destructive Deification of Michael Jackson

Publishing my new book, The Michael Jackson Tapes: A Tragic Icon Reveals His Soul in Intimate Conversation, has been a fascinating and at times painful education in the need for Michael’s most diehard fans to deify him. The book is […]

Previous Posts

Public Asks for Political Inspiration, but Responds to Negative Attacks
There are two people running against me in the Republican primary for New Jersey’s Ninth district and recently I had an interesting lesson in politics from both. Call me naïve, but I really thought we could have a primary where people ...

posted 2:12:46pm Apr. 24, 2012 | read full post »

Would Hilary Rosen Have Criticized Stay-at-Home Dads as Never Having Worked?
It's good that Hilary Rosen apologized for her comments that Ann Romney, who chose to be a stay-at-home mom to raise her five boys, had 'never worked a day in her life.' It took a day for Rosen to finally acknowledge that her comments were ...

posted 4:22:07pm Apr. 13, 2012 | read full post »

An Ungrateful Karzai Calls American Troops Demons
Hamid Karzai recently called the brave and selfless members of the United States military ‘demons’ who were guilty of perhaps ‘500’ atrocities against the people of the Afghanistan. One would have thought that the American ...

posted 5:21:39pm Mar. 19, 2012 | read full post »

Jews Must Demand Relationship of Equality with Christians
No Holds Barred: It is high time that our warm allies in the Mormon Church cease the posthumous baptizing of any and all Jews. My much-publicized dispute with Canadian TV host Michael Coren last week taught me valuable lessons about the ...

posted 4:39:41pm Feb. 28, 2012 | read full post »

The Michael Coren Christians Who Cowardly Deny Church History
I came on to Michael Coren’s TV show in Canada to simply talk about my new book Kosher Jesus, which has received wide attention throughout the world. I left dazed, having heard from him that Jews refuse to appreciate Christians, depict them ...

posted 4:03:50pm Feb. 24, 2012 | read full post »


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