Nurturing rabbis as American religious leaders, Rabbis Without Borders makes Jewish wisdom an available resource to the wider public. For more information about Rabbis Without Borders programs, visit the Rabbis Without Borders site by clicking here.
"I did not fast during Ramadan. But I did somehow experience a little bit of the meaning of the Muslim holy month that just ended a few days ago. The ebb and flow of the fast days was in my consciousness. The daily hunger and the spiritual uplift of the faithful were on my mind. I learned a tiny bit about the meaning of this month, about being conditioned through the fast to feel empathy for the poor who don’t have enough to eat.
"In the midst of a very eventful summer for the European Union, German Chancellor Angela Merkel recently found that she'd unexpectedly gone viral on YouTube. During Merkel's otherwise pedestrian TV appearance on Good Living in Germany, a 13-year-old Palestinian refugee named Reem asked a heartbreaking question about facing deportation from Germany to her native Lebanon. When Merkel noticed the girl cry, she reached out to console her, saying that she'd done well.
"It's much more fun and easy to imagine the good and positive things that can happen. There's a whole industry advancing "positive thinking" and "visualizing success." However, if we focus exclusively on why we're so right and so good and so smart, then when things do go wrong, we may not know how to respond."
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"Earlier that day, in the president's response to the marriage milestone, he said: "Our nation was founded on a bedrock principle that we are all created equal. The project of each generation is to bridge the meaning of those founding words with the realities of changing times - a never-ending quest to ensure those words ring true for every single American."
"...One of the most interesting things about this Jewish wisdom "pop-up retail" is that, unlike religious authorities in most institutional religion, Knopf isn't obsessed with membership, with controlling the outcome or making people in his image. He cares about offering people wisdom aligned with what they need in the moment, hoping to serve them on their particular journey..."
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"...I believe in the depth of dichotomy. I have learned volumes from the wisdom of the dialectic. I know the diverse contours of our Nation call for different needs from different types of people. We are all entitled to our point of view. But, given the sleepless nights our country has experienced this past week, I beg from others only what I am asking from myself: that is, simply to engage in a complicated, civil conversation, without running for cover from “dug-in” positions. There is simply too much as stake..."
"Why is it that a person born with male anatomy can self-identify and live as a woman, but someone born into a Czech-German body can't self-identify as African-American? Is gender identity a construct, while racial identity is inextricably connected to one's biology?
"... I yearn for you to develop a rich, spiritually penetrating prayer life. To find not only fluency within Jewish liturgy but contemporary resonance that connects with your neshama, your soul. I hope that you will come to a theology that doesn’t hide form reality but also isn’t so thin that it is devoid of support and comfort in times of struggle. I want you to learn not only how to perform rituals but what those rituals are intended to signify..."
"Rabbi Aaron Weininger writes: "I am grateful for colleagues who have become teachers and friends in Clal as part of the Rabbis Without Borders Fellowship and the Clergy Leadership Incubator.Thanks to them, this wonderful community of outsiders, for always expanding the path into Torah."
Clal is grateful for this important and beautifully crafted torah which so clearly articulates the raison d'être of CLI and Rabbis Without Borders.
Our Community of Outsiders
"...We Jews often struggle with faith and with belief. So maybe we need to move away from questions of belief, and move towards experiences of awe. After all, Judaism is a religion that is much more about what we do and how we act than about what we believe, and science is suggesting that feelings of awe lead us to acts of loving kindness..."