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November 2006 Archives

Rabbi Stern’s presentation of the issue of Jewish status as a question of genes vs. identity is right on the mark. Judaism has been so hard to pin down for so many people because it’s not a religion–you can certainly […]

In juxtaposing “blood and genetics,” by which I presume he means those born of a Jewish mother, with those who “identify with the Jewish people and adopt a certain lifestyle,” by which I presume he means those who self-identify as […]

In juxtaposing “blood and genetics,” by which I presume he means those born of a Jewish mother, with those who “identify with the Jewish people and adopt a certain lifestyle,” by which I presume he means those who self-identify as […]

There have always been two sides to the “Who is a Jew?” question. There are those who identify Jews primarily through blood and genetics, and those who see being a Jew as being more about choosing to identify with the […]

There have always been two sides to the “Who is a Jew?” question. There are those who identify Jews primarily through blood and genetics, and those who see being a Jew as being more about choosing to identify with the […]

How telling are the wise words of Rabbi Waxman. Though Judaism always privileged the tzaddik, the ultra-pious human being, its texts from the Bible on through the Talmud highlight just how flawed and full of failure leadership can be. Just […]

I agree wholeheartedly with Rabbi Waxman that clergy, of any faith, must be careful to see themselves, and allow themselves to be seen, as real human beings with human weaknesses and flaws. As Henri Nouwen so eloquently writes in his […]

At the very beginning of my rabbinical studies, one of my teachers gave me a sage piece of advice: “Don’t let your congregants put you on a pedestal. Then they’ll spend all their time trying to knock you off of […]

There are two great poles in religious existence: redemption and thankfulness. Redemption constantly calls on us to make our lives and the world around us better and more holy. Thankfulness forces us to be content with what we have been […]

The AJC Thanksgiving Reader Rabbi Grossman mentions is in many ways rooted in the thought of Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, founder of Reconstructionist Judaism. Kaplan claimed that Jews in America lived in two civilizations–one American and one Jewish, and that each […]

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