"...Do we really want Facebook and Google to determine what is and isn't a hoax, then edit and shape what we see, based on their determination? What criteria would be used to make such a determination? Would it require limiting or outing The Onion or The Daily Show from our newsfeeds? What about religion news based on the premise that Jesus actually rose from the grave 2,000 years ago, or that God descended upon Mount Sinai 1,200 years before that in order to give the Israelites 10 Commandments?
"...Ida, a single mother, an internationally renowned violinist, a brilliant and strong-willed woman, had been treated for leukemia, put (miraculously, given the severity of her illness) into remission, and then only a month ago struck with a powerful and ultimately fatal recurrence. Her ten-year-old son, a precocious and singularly intelligent boy, is now officially an orphan.
"...There are many paths towards economic and social mobility, but, historically, elite colleges have played a relatively strong role here. And they seem to leave this demographic out to a large extent, letting people from that sort of background assume that these schools are unfriendly and out of reach both economically and socially.
"...I am going to talk about a very Jewish concept — and that is that the way we speak our thoughts, channel our energies, and respond in difficult situations are a direct reflection on our people — the Jewish people, and on our own personal ethics, as well as the way we choose to make God’s presence manifest on the earth — or not.
What do you think? Should patients take an oath like doctors do? Heather Hansen, Esq., speaks with Rabbi Brad Hirschfield about oaths and how they might improve the medical practitioner's relationship with the patient. Since oaths have the power of ritual, tradition and presence, having an oath or oath-like practice that cultivates remembering that the patient is a whole person, that the medical practitioner may not have a perfect answer to the patient's problem, etc.
"...If the only act someone did to indicate their concern for the vulnerable among us was to put on a safety pin, I, too, would consider it laughable rather than laudable. But being aware is always the first step toward change. First, be aware, then learn. Learn, then examine the alternative actions. Examine the alternatives, then decide. Decide, but then, most importantly, act...."
Rev. Welton Gaddy speaks with Rabbi Brad Hirschfield in an effort to seek healing and words of hope. Well before the voting started in this year's election, it was already very clear to us that the divisiveness and distrust in the campaign would need to be addressed in the election’s aftermath. State of Belief radio is hosting a series of conversations around the themes of healing and reconciliation this week.
"Leaders cannot lead alone. Without a community around them, they would have no one to lead, and no one to turn to for advice. The best leaders seek out places where they can be both challenged and nurtured in order to reach their highest potential. The Rabbis Without Borders Network is a case study that demonstrates how a rich, diverse, challenging, and safe place enables leaders to think, explore, and imagine together, and therefore become more confident, transformative, and relatable leaders...."
"Last week's election prompted strong reaction and reflection from the Jewish community. With a majority of Jews supporting the Democratic candidate, and the troubling echos of anti-Semitism and xenophobia which permeated the campaign, the victory of Donald Trump has brought Jewish organizations to issue statements, hold gatherings and assess what the next four years will mean...."
"Author, journalist and social commentator, Beth Kissileff, has a new book out this week, Questioning Return: A Novel. Among the things I liked most about it was how easy she made it to read, while inviting us to think about some really deep issues regarding faith, identity, sexuality, and how we try to create the lives we most want to lead. Today we get to beyond the page and talk with the author about those very questions...."