Clal nurtures new skills in leaders, helping them to prepare for the civic, spiritual, intellectual and ethical challenges in American life.
"Rabbi Irwin Kula, president of CLAL: The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership, said, “Torah is ownerless; that’s why it was given in the desert. This question [Whose Torah Is It Anyway?] is a masked question of the anxieties of this room.’"...
"There is a feeling you get when you stand on, say, the ground at Gettysburg or the steps of the Lincoln Monument and you know that something momentous, a piece of history, occurred right on that part of the Earth right beneath your feet. But what about the history that went down at less noted locations, places that you pass every day on your way to work or when you take your dog out for a walk?
"...For American Jews, socialism and communism were also social movements permeating the most mundane aspects of life. There were socialist and communist summer camps, mother’s groups, and even sports clubs. For many Jews, socialism and communism were part of the fullest expression of American freedom. But as we see in this week’s Torah portion, engaging with a political approach that challenges established power can have disastrous results.
"It’s not your imagination: in the past few years, the gaming world has seen an uptick in the number of socially responsible games—things like WeTopia (basically Farmville with a charitable component), Half the Sky (a choose-your-own adventure women’s empowerment game), and Foldit (a puzzle game that solves real-world science quandaries). For the best of what’s new, look no further than the nominees for the 2013 Games for Change Awards. The nominees are separated out by category.
"As the Israelites were about to invade the Promised Land, Moses sent out spies. He would later say that he did this at the request of the people [Deuteronomy 1:22]. Perhaps this showed a lack of Israelite confidence in God, perhaps it only revealed a lack of self-confidence. In any case, perhaps as a kind of test, God reluctantly agreed to the request.
"Memorial Day is a day of remembering the men and women who died while serving in the United States Armed Forces...Remembering is not a neutral act. As we tell and retell the stories of the past, we as individuals and communities choose what to remember and what to forget. We don’t faithfully record the past, rather we reconstruct our past with the needs of contemporary culture clearly in mind – shaping and manipulating the past in order to mold the present.
"It can be a shock to the system when you meet someone with a bold vision and the chutzpah to realize it. A couple of years ago, soon after he had been ordained, my classmate Rabbi Owen Gottlieb sat down with me to share his vision for Jewish education. In it, Hebrew School and other avenues of Jewish study could become places for joyful experiential learning. Young Jews around the world could engage their tradition through digital, paper-based, and self-created games.
Rabbi Owen Gottlieb, founder of ConverJent was a featured speaker on the Digital Judaism: Tablet To Tablet Conference held at New York University's Abu Dhabi NY Campus in collaboration with the Center for Religion and Media, NYUNY on April 25, 2013.
Clal Resident Tzemah Yoreh, Ph.D. has published the first book in his Biblical Narrative (Kernel to Canon) Series. In Jacob’s Journey he relates ‘ chart the development of biblical narrative, which I believe began with a coherent kernel, an original Bible, if you will, and developed through successive additions into the story we have today.
"...In spite of all the extraordinary technological progress that has taken place since disruptive innovation theory was first posited in 1997 (Innovator's Dilemma, Christensen) certain domains have proved to be quite resistant or slow to adopt change. We have observed that these slow-to-change domains such as education, healthcare, religion, conflict resolution, the environment, politics and the military to name a few represent some of the most critical areas waiting to be disrupted.