"...Many people believed that the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge – like “Bring Back Our Girls” from May or “Kony 2012” video two years ago – was a form of “slacktivism.” People could click “Like” or share a video, and feel good about “doing something to help the world,” but in reality, they would not be making that much of an impact.
"When you think about what it means to be spiritual, find spirituality, or anything remotely approximating those experiences, what do you think of? Do you find your attention turning to experiences and images of relative solitude? Of solitary walks on the beach or perhaps, lonely mountain peaks? That is certainly one spiritual type. But not the only one...."
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"You don't have to be Jewish to find meaning, especially this year, in Yom Kippur, the Jewish Day of Atonement, which begins Friday at Sundown. You simply need to appreciate that we live in challenging times and that there is real wisdom to be found in the Judeo-Christian tradition — wisdom that can help guide us through such times. Here's how:
"TWD contributor, Amy Shouse wrote a recent post about how we rush to judgment and that "until we know a person's whole story and take a moment to think what it might be like to 'climb into their skin,' we'll miss out on discovering the empathy we have within ourselves..." She was right on. This insight is taken radically and unnervingly further on Yom Kippur, the most sacred day in the Jewish calendar, which begins tomorrow evening...."
During a recent NFL game Kansas City Chiefs Safety, Husain Abdullah hit the headlines when he was penalized after performing a traditional Muslim prayer after scoring a touchdown. Rabbi Brad Hirschfield links this incident with the upcoming Holt Vs Hobbs case at the Supreme Court and considers whether our institutions are hostile to Islam, or religion in general?
"Chrysalis — a hard shell surrounding a young moth in the process of maturation. From the greek, chrysos, meaning gold. Chrysalis is also the name of TEDxFultonStreet’s 2014 conference, and like the name, included people with stories and ideas of how, after a bit of maturation/protection, and the willingness to break out of the shells which often surround us/our hearts/our minds, we can discover golden opportunities...."
"I once heard retired General and former Commander of the U.S. Central Command Tommy Ray Franks say, “We can kill every terrorist but we can’t kill terrorism.” Terrorism is a violent ideology, which means military and counter terror operations however justified are only short-term solutions. Ultimately, you cannot bomb ideas out of existence however abhorrent we may find them. Violent ideas actually thrive in violent conditions.
"The season of reckoning is upon us. For Jews, the sentiment will likely evoke thoughts of the upcoming Days of Awe. Both the Hebrew month of Elul and then the ten days of repentance that starts with Rosh HaShana and ends with Yom Kippur is the time when Jews are called upon to go into introspection mode. Where we identify particular sins of commission or omission the Jewish tradition calls upon us to repent and to make amends..."
In this book, Clal Resident Tzemah Yoreh, Ph.D. explores how did the biblical Isaac die? It may be surprising to know that in the original Genesis account, the angel did not stop Abraham's knife, but let Isaac be sacrificed, severing not only his head but also the continuity between Abraham and Jacob. This companion volume to my Kernel to Canon series tells the original story of Abraham, Jacob, Joseph, Moses and Balaam as the Bible once told it, without embellishments or commentary.
"May you be Written in the Book of Life” is such a nice phrase to utter at this time of year, between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. Most years I don’t think much about it. It is easy to ignore the weight of the words when everyone in your life is healthy.This year is different. A close friend is struggling with aggressive breast cancer. Instead of casually saying these words, I am fervently praying them on her behalf..."