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Virtual Talmud

Virtual Talmud

December 2005 Archives

Use the Weapon of Memory Against Iran

I’m not going to waste words here on why Iran’s President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad’s revolting remarks on Israel and the Holocaust are both patently false and deeply offensive, and to its credit the world community has largely stepped in to say […]

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Jews are the Canaries of the World…

They are easy to miss. They are displayed way above eye level in a corridor that one passes through from one exhibit to another. Interactive booths with seats line the walls, attracting everyone’s attention down instead of up. Perhaps the […]

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Only Allah

Iran’s President Ahmadinejad‘s latest declarations that the Holocaust is a myth and that Israel should be wiped off the face of this earth speak for themselves. What everyone is trying to figure out is just how seriously should we take […]

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Who’s Attacking Whom in the “Attack on Christmas”?

I was hurrying through Reagan National Airport on the way to the United Synagogue convention last week when I passed an enormous Christmas tree on the lower concourse. I appreciated the beautiful decorations and automatically looked around to see if […]

Putting the ‘Daze’ Back in ‘Holidays’

A lot of attention has been given lately to a small but vocal segment of the population that sees Christmas–and, by extension, Christians–under attack, with the increasing use of the phrase “Happy Holidays” instead of “Merry Christmas.” Exhibit A has […]

And the Loser Is…

News flash: Most Americans really don’t care what they are being told at the checkout counter. Happy Holidays versus Merry Christmas. There are few moments where I favor disengagement over engagement, but this issue is one of them. This is […]

Is Hanukkah an Orgy of Consumerism?

Baruch Hashem (Thank God) for Macy’s. No matter how much Jews forget their Judaism, no matter how much they assimilate, no matter how much they intermarry, Macy’s will ensure that each and every Jew never forgets Hanukkah. For most American […]

A Celebration of Identity

Hanukkah – the most important holiday of the Jewish year. Not really, of course: Holidays like Rosh ha-Shanah and Yom Kippur and even (especially!) the weekly observance of Shabbat have far more religious significance. In fact, religiously speaking, Hanukkah hardly […]

A Hanukkah Epiphany

Epiphanies can happen in the strangest places. We had gone to see a movie. I don’t remember which one. It was years ago. My son was young, perhaps six or seven. It was holiday season. A large Christmas tree stood […]

Previous Posts

The Task Is Never Finished
It has been heartwarming to read the warm responses to Rabbi Waxman's post asking Beliefnet to reconsider its decision to cancel Virtual Talmud. Virtual Talmud offered an alternative model for internet communications: civil discourse pursued in ...

posted 12:31:46pm Apr. 03, 2008 | read full post »

Some Parting Reflections
Well, loyal readers, all good things must come to an end and we’ve been informed that this particular experiment in blogging as a forum for creating wide-ranging discussion on topics of interest to contemporary Jews has run its course. Maybe ...

posted 1:00:29pm Mar. 31, 2008 | read full post »

Obama's Lesson and The Jewish Community
There are few times in this blog’s history when I have felt that Rabbi Grossman was one hundred percent correct in her criticisms of my ideas. However, a few weeks ago she called me out for citing a few crack websites on Barak Obama’s ...

posted 12:09:08pm Mar. 31, 2008 | read full post »

The Future of Race Relations
As a post-baby boomer, it is interesting to me to see how much of today’s conversation about racial relations is still rooted in the 1960s experience and rhetoric of the civil rights struggle, and the disenchantment that followed. Many in the ...

posted 4:04:41pm Mar. 25, 2008 | read full post »

Wright and Wrong of Race and Jews
Years ago, as a rabbinical student, I was one of a group of rabbinical students who visited an African American seminary in Atlanta. My fellow rabbinical students and I expected an uplifting weekend of interfaith sharing like we had experienced ...

posted 12:50:11pm Mar. 24, 2008 | read full post »

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