"With anti–Semitic headlines in the news, NY Governor, Andrew Cuomo, announced yesterday that he is making a 24-hour visit to Israel. Now, I love Israel, have made trips almost as short for a whole variety of reasons, and would never want to discourage anyone from visiting there, but this is just not smart – and for so many reasons. Don't get me wrong, I don't doubt the Governor's good intentions, but how, for starters, does visiting Israel address issues of antisemitism here in America?
"When my friends ask me how I like my new job, I halfheartedly complain that it’s interfering with my protest schedule. Now that I’m teaching full-time, I’m mostly limited to weekend rallies. Just this week, I saw pictures on Facebook of my colleagues at the State Capitol and felt sorry that I couldn’t miss school to be with them....
"In the context of Irish literature, the reader may find herself caught in the funky twists and turns of its stories, mainly due to the fluidity of their nature. At the entrance of each tale, content clues and road maps are sold for twenty five cents each; but without our handy footnotes, it’s only too easy to get lost in the world of the fantastical.
Rabbi Kula lays out the framework coined by Clayton Christensen as "jobs to be done," and he applies that framework to contemporary Judaism. He also looks at the roles of individuals and communities, critiquing the pervasive idea of Judaism encapsulated by the phrase "the Jewish community." He explains why an emphasis on belonging makes it difficult for Judaism to better fulfill a variety of other important "jobs to be done."
"Old habits die hard. Especially at times of illness and death, naturally we incline to practices rooted deep in memory, how and when we were raised, sometimes grounded in ancient tradition that arose in cultures so different that our ancestors could hardly imagine how we’d live today. Most everyone reading this blog post grew up before blog posts (and before an Internet filled with them).
"Caught in the spinning wheels of political change, I believe it is time for us all to take some inventory on our spiritual state. As a Catholic, I am often dismayed by some groups who exhibit an unchristian attitude towards others while simultaneously claiming to fight to preserve Christianity in a way that can be hateful and harmful to minority groups.
"A few years ago, in the midst of one of what I have come to call my 'hamster wheel' phases, the universe intervened. My computer crashed beyond repair, swallowing masses of work, irretrievably. A work situation went sour, closing off an avenue of professional satisfaction. Then I broke my leg while bicycling slowly through my neighborhood. What followed was surgery, hospitalization, new chunks of metal holding bits of my broken bones together and long, painful physical therapy.
"There is a story in Jewish tradition about a man who insults another man without realizing that the man is a prominent rabbi. When he does realize it, he is horrified and tries to apologize. He asks what he can do to make up for it. The rabbi tells him to take a feather pillow to the top of a hill, tear it open and let the feathers blow away.
"I went to the local town hall meeting with our State Representative, Buddy Carter. The small theater at the local college overflowed with people but not by a lot. Maybe 30 people were standing while another 150 were seated. It was 10 a.m. on a Thursday morning when most people in my largely working-class city are out working. Someone asked if Mr. Carter would vote to defund Planned Parenthood. He sidestepped the question, and the crowd began chanting — yes or no? Yes or no? He paused, waited for the din to subside.
Jeopardy contestant Rabbi Geoff Mitelman's TV appearance sparked viewer Mark Wagman to invite Nobel Laureate Roald Hoffmann to discuss the intersection of Religion and Science at Adas Kodesch Shel Emeth (AKSE) Congregation in Wilmington, Del. "'The aim of Scientists in Synagogues,' [Rabbi Geoff] Mitelman explained, “is to help Jews connect more to their Judaism through science.