meditation

Rabbi With A Pedigree

02/11/2005
Staff Writer

Joshua Boettiger may be the only rabbinic student who can trace his roots to 1600 Pennsylvania Ave. The 31-year-old is a great-grandson of Democrat Franklin Delano Roosevelt, the Depression and World War II leader alternately exalted and reviled by the American Jewish community.The elder son of an Episcopalian father –– the son of President Roosevelt’s daughter, Anna –– and a Jewish mother, Boettiger grew up attending church and synagogue. “I don’t know whether to be Jewish or Christian,” a 5-year-old Boettiger told his parents.

A Tale Of Two Fictions

08/23/2002
Special To The Jewish Week

Israelis live a bifurcated existence. On the one hand they wearily read the morning paper, always knowing someone who is affected by a bomb, or the closing of businesses caused by the bomb. On the other hand, they go to bed dreaming of childhoods in Toronto or Paris or Arad, worrying about unfinished paintings, or remembering a first kiss behind the chicken coop near the abandoned kibbutz.

Israel’s ‘Other’ Cinema

11/01/2007
Special To The Jewish Week

Most of us need to be reminded — frequently — that only 80 percent of the population of Israel consists of Jews. The other 20 percent is defined collectively as Arab Citizens of Israel. Most of them are Muslim or Christian, and they come from different ethnic and religious backgrounds such as Druze and Bedouin. Their voices are not heard very often here in the United States, but, as The Other Israel Film Festival powerfully affirms, they bring a lot to the cultural table.

Contemplate This!

04/02/2008
Rabbi David Wolpe is spiritual leader of Sinai Temple in Los Angeles.

In his essay on the great Jewish scholar, the Vilna Gaon, Louis Ginzburg wrote that the Gaon “declared it to be a religious duty and inviolable obligation of every person to fix a certain time of the day for reflection and meditation.” Ginzburg, himself a great scholar, and the Gaon agree: both insist there comes a time to put the books away.

Caught On Jaffa’s Mean Streets

01/26/2010
Special To The Jewish Week

When you hear about the latest collaboration between a Palestinian filmmaker and his Israeli counterpart, the last thing you would expect to see is a gritty urban crime film. On the other hand, as Tolstoy observed that you can tell a lot about a nation by the state of its prisons, you can learn a lot about a culture by its crime fiction. After all, as the new Israeli film “Ajami” reminds us forcefully, the reasons that people enter into criminal activity speak pretty loudly about the most elemental forces at play in their daily lives.

Shal — Ohmmm

Special To The Jewish Week
01/30/2009

Aimee Beyda steals away for 45 minutes every morning to the quiet of her second bedroom, where she engages in an ancient practice that has transformed her life. Wrapped in a soft blanket, Beyda focuses on her inhalations and exhalations, the ebb and flow of her breath. She allows thoughts to wash over her, but not to drag her in or under.

“Meditating is like a pill. It takes the edge off things a little bit,” says Beyda. “If I’m down, I just say it’s OK. I can deal with that.”

Learning Access, To Gain Access

Staff Writer
12/08/2009
For the past several years, Devorah has spent her professional life giving workshops on Jewish meditation, practicing holistic healing and acting as a life coach, as well as singing in the tradition of Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach. She never thought much about seeking a stable career that would secure her future. But, now in her late 40s and with the economy dipping, these days Devorah worries more about the practicalities of life, like a pension, retirement benefits and security, than she ever did in the past.

The Stem Cell Fast Track

Israeli researchers say they are already able to reverse some defects, and may soon be able to take on diseases.

01/30/2009
Staff Writer
In a city where so many cultures seek spiritual reawakening, In an era when religion and science seem divided by a gaping chasm, one group of scientists is showing how these two belief systems may be a little closer than we think.

Shal — Ohmmm

Meditation can soothe your soul.

01/30/2009
Special To The Jewish Week
Aimee Beyda steals away for 45 minutes every morning to the quiet of her second bedroom, where she engages in an ancient practice that has transformed her life. Wrapped in a soft blanket, Beyda focuses on her inhalations and exhalations, the ebb and flow of her breath. She allows thoughts to wash over her, but not to drag her in or under. “Meditating is like a pill. It takes the edge off things a little bit,” says Beyda. “If I’m down, I just say it’s OK. I can deal with that.”

A Landscape For Contemplation

07/11/2003
Staff Writer
The Rothko Chapel in Houston, Texas, is an austere space for ecumenical meditation. One of the oil town's most famous landmarks, its walls are adorned with 14 monumental paintings by the Russian-born artist Mark Rothko, rendered in his definitive style of floating patches of color: in this case, black, deep brown and purple. The art patron Dominique de Menil, who commissioned the space and its somber paintings, reportedly said the works evoke "the mystery of the cosmos, the tragic mystery of our perishable condition, [and] the silence of god, the unbearable silence of God."
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