Editorial & Opinion | Musings

08/07/2007 | | Rabbi David Wolpe is spiritual leader of Temple Sinai in Los Angeles. | Musings

In the Shema we are commanded to love God. What are we then to do with that love?  Should we love God and therefore conquer the world? Love God and live in perfect purity?

No, we are told to love God and teach our children. Speak these words when walking, lying down, in all the humble ways of ordinary life. This is the sacred quotidian — not to be mountaintop saints, but to live every day with love.

02/19/2009 | | Rabbi David Wolpe is spiritual leader of Temple Sinai in Los Angeles. | Musings

Recently a series of books by scientists and polemicists have argued that religion is pernicious and God unprovable.  While it is true that religion, like every great human passion and drive, can be both life giving and destructive, it is worth conceding the central claim: God is indeed unprovable.  Thank God.  That is part of the glory of bitachon.

10/27/2009 | | Musings

Judaism so treasures words one might think you could get a righteous person out of a book. Yet beginning with the Bible, Judaism taught that laws come to life in people. Role models speak louder than rules.

01/26/2010 | | Musings

This past Shabbat I had the great joy of addressing my daughter on her bat mitzvah. I pointed to the phrase in her parasha (Torah portion) “a night of watching (Ex. 12:42).” It occurs twice in the Bible, both times in the same sentence. The first time it refers to God’s watching; the second to the Israelites watching.

02/02/2010 | | Musings

Knowing where to find information is not the same as possessing it. Each fact we learn is arranged in the matrix of all we already know. One who knows how to Google “Shakespeare sonnets” cannot be compared to the one who has memorized Shakespeare’s sonnets. The latter carries the words with him. The former is an accountant of knowledge; he knows where the treasure is, but it does not belong to him.

11/04/2009 | | Special to the Jewish Week | Musings

In “Eating Animals,” Joanthan Safran Foer’s remarkable new book, he describes what has happened to the way we raise animals for food in our country. With wit and power Foer lays out before us what it means to consign billions (yes, billions) of animals to horrific suffering so we can eat the antibiotic laden meat and feed it to our children.