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Editorial & Opinion | Musings

01/30/2012 - 19:00 | | Musings

 

Moses was born into trouble, placed in a basket to save his life. Pharaoh’s daughter “beholds” the child crying; noting that she saw and did not hear him crying the Rabbis conclude that the baby cried silently. Moses learned early what it was to fight, to have to hide, to be scarred by the world.

01/23/2012 - 19:00 | | Musings

From historian David McCullough: “Once upon a time in the dead of winter in the Dakota Territory, Theodore Roosevelt took off in a makeshift boat down the Little Missouri River in pursuit of a couple of thieves who had stolen his prized rowboat. After several days on the river, he caught up and got the draw on them with his trusty Winchester, at which point they surrendered. Then Roosevelt set off in a borrowed wagon to haul the thieves cross-country to justice.

01/16/2012 - 19:00 | | Musings

As Moses prepared to relinquish leadership of the Israelites, he had advice about the type of leader who should succeed him. 

Moses entreats God to appoint as his replacement “a man in whom there is spirit.” What does that phrase mean? Our sages offer a very interesting interpretation. They explain Moses was asking for a leader who would be able to deal with each individual according to his or her own temperament. In other words, Moses understood that people need a leader who honors diversity.

01/09/2012 - 19:00 | | Musings

The history of messianism in Judaism is the history of false and failed Messiahs. Some were earnest but wrong; others were clever pretenders. But there is also no complete agreement as to what the messianic time, when it arrives, will bring. Some scholars are supernaturalists, believing that it will result in the overturning of nature. Others, most notably Maimonides, are more restrained in their vision.

01/02/2012 - 19:00 | | Musings

The history of messianism in Judaism is the history of false and failed Messiahs. Some were earnest but wrong; others were clever pretenders. But there is also no complete agreement as to what the messianic time, when it arrives, will bring. Some scholars are supernaturalists, believing that it will result in the overturning of nature. Others, most notably Maimonides, are more restrained in their vision.

12/26/2011 - 19:00 | | Musings

Each year we are privileged to see Jews accomplish extraordinary things in science, art, literature and other subjects. Many of them strongly identify as Jews, but for many, Judaism plays little or no role in their lives. Rav Kook once asked a poignant question: When will Jews who are great also be great Jews?