"

"

view counter

Editorial & Opinion | Opinion

09/27/2016 - 17:52 | | Opinion

The Unetanneh Tokef prayer we recite on Rosh Hashanah is the most moving part of the High Holiday liturgy. It includes the following sentence that describes a vision of divine judgment to take place on the first day of the Jewish New Year: “All humankind will pass before you like a flock of sheep.” In other words, God’s judgment on Rosh Hashanah extends not only to Jews and the Jewish people, but to the entire world. The day has universal significance. The upcoming High Holidays are an opportunity to expand our perception beyond our selves and communities.

09/26/2016 - 17:23 | | Opinion

Whether we like it or not, the days are upon us when the sky begins to show more moon than sun. The shorter days mean the predictability of the Hagim, the High Holidays. And while Judaism does not have us worship either the sun or the moon, Judaism has had a long-standing relationship with the moon. It started centuries ago, with Rosh Hashana.  The predictability of the holiday commencing the Jewish New Year was not always a given for Jews in the past. During the rabbinic period- specifically the Mishna- the Jewish New Year was determined by the central rabbinic court in Jerusalem. 

09/26/2016 - 17:21 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

“The relationship between Israel and American Jewry is nearing a dead end.” This ominous prognosis was penned not by a millennial blogger writing from Brooklyn or San Francisco in recent months, but by Israeli Member of Knesset Eliezer Livneh. He was writing in 1965.

Livneh had undertaken a tour of Jewish American communities, and set out his troubled observations in a booklet entitled “American Jewry – an Israeli Challenge”.

09/21/2016 - 11:41 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

Ninety percent of American Jews are not Orthodox. More than half of those Jews will find their way into a synagogue at some point during the High Holidays and hear rabbis speak on a host of contemporary Jewish issues. How about the central question of God? Does God really care if you are in shul on the Hi Ho’s? During the other 362 days of year, does God care if you eat veal parmesan?

09/15/2016 - 16:14 | | Opinion

This year, as every year, the prayers and melodies of the High Holy Days bring me back to my childhood synagogue. I grew up in Buenos Aires amidst a community of Syrian Jews. My grandparents had left Aleppo decades earlier, but Aleppo never left them. Our lives were infused with Aleppo’s sumptuous tastes and smells, with its music, its language, its social norms, and the memory of its streets and glorious synagogues. Aleppo was to us simultaneously remote and intimately close, exotic and familiar.

09/13/2016 - 23:06 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

Over the last eight years I have made more than 120 campuse visits around the country, from large state universities to small colleges, talking about Israel, the Palestinians and the Mideast conflict.