Opinion

My Promise To An Elderly Progressive Activist

10/17/2011

My Promise To An Elderly Progressive Activist

Former Soviet Union Illuminates New Jewish World

10/11/2011
Special To The Jewish Week

There is an old joke told of a Rabbi leaving synagogue after Kol Nidre services. On his way home he was astonished to see Goldstein, one of his congregants, sitting in a non-kosher restaurant eating a sumptuous meal.

As Goldstein exited the restaurant, the rabbi accosted him: “What are you doing, I just saw you eating treif, and paying for it on Yom Kippur. Explain yourself!” Goldstein replied: “Oy, I am sorry rabbi, but I just forgot.”

“Did you forget that today was Yom Kippur?” “No.”

Rabbi Elliot Cosgrove

Johannesburg, Jackson, Boston… And Jerusalem?

10/11/2011
Special To The Jewish Week

During a visit to South Africa last summer, I stopped at the Apartheid Museum in Johannesburg, hoping to better understand how so despicable a system could dominate that country for nearly half a century, from 1948-1991, and why any comparisons to Israel are ridiculous. I came away humbled, wondering whether there might just be a little residue of apartheid in us all.

Joshua Hammerman

Sukkot In The City: Straddling Two Worlds

10/06/2011

Strolling through the Orthodox neighborhoods of Williamsburg on the last day of Sukkot, I passed row upon row of three-sided huts built against storefronts, brownstone doors, balconies, and sidewalks.

Gila Lyons

A Rabbi Reflects On Steve Jobs

10/06/2011

News of the death of Apple’s founder and CEO, Steve Jobs, spread across the Internet just as quickly as reviews of the brand new iPhone 4S. The man, who President Barack Obama called “among the greatest of American innovators - brave enough to think differently, bold enough to believe he could change the world, and talented enough to do it,” was loved by the world. I found myself saddened upon learning of his passing. It’s not just because of my addiction to my MacBook, iPhone and iPad – some of the revolutionary technology he designed in recent years.

Rabbi Shimshon Nadel

The Conversation: What Is Judaism And Does It Really Matter?

10/05/2011

I was fortunate to be invited as one of 50 participants in a two-day retreat last month called “The Conversation.” Sponsored by The Jewish Week, the program is an annual opportunity for a diverse group of Jews from across the country to come together to dialogue about Jewish issues in a comfortable and casual environment.  There is no agenda other than to stimulate communication and create bonds between segments of the Jewish community that are not always in contact or in concert.

Marc Erlbaum

The Lesson Of A Hardboiled Egg

Yom Kippur brings backs memories of a loss, and of one’s shortcomings.

10/05/2011
Special to the Jewish Week

Blessed are You, Hashem our God, King of the universe, Who creates numerous living things with their deficiencies.

 -— Borei Nefashot, the blessing after food and drink

 “I can’t really pray,” an old friend wrote this week in an e-mail. “My efforts to forgive and ask forgiveness, such as they are, have been less than heartfelt. This has not been a successful Elul.”

Returning To Where I’d Never Been Before

10/04/2011
Special To The Jewish Week

I’m a Russian Jew. I was born and raised in New York City. I am proud to be an American. But somehow, I am still a Russian Jew. 

My family hasn’t been back to the former Soviet Union since they left in search of a better Jewish life, some 40 years ago. I’d never been there at all, until this summer.

Julian Olidort

Aging, Gracefully, Together

10/04/2011
Special To The Jewish Week

I recently took a walk in the woods with two women, one 20 years older than I am, the other 40 years older, to discuss the challenges of aging. We paused when we saw white-tailed deer hop-freeze beside us in the thicket. We shared stories about women in our lives, and how they navigated the aging process. We talked about our own changing bodies, changing minds, changing children, changing communities. We turned our faces towards the sunshine and stopped in our tracks when someone shared a particularly resonant insight, as we let it wash over us.

Maya Bernstein

The Sacrifice Of Isaac: A Father’s Ignoble Act

09/27/2011
Special To The Jewish Week

God: (Genesis 22:2, as read on Rosh HaShanah) “Take your child, your only child, that you love so dearly, and offer him to Me as a sacrifice.”

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