Musings

The Barefoot Prophet

05/01/2013

When God appears at the burning bush, what is the first thing Moses is told to do? Take off his shoes.

Rabbi David Wolpe

Let The Healing Begin

04/24/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

The tragedies of the past week remind us why religious community matters:

1. In the face of death, religion maintains that life is meaningful. Not only because of the belief that human beings never fully disappear, but because it teaches that this pageant, with all its pain and anguish, need never resolve into despair. Life still matters; we always matter.

2. A religious community provides comfort and help. Long after others have forgotten, the congregation will be there, with everything from meals to a shoulder to a prayer. 

Rabbi David Wolpe

The Barefoot Prophet

04/17/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

When God appears at the burning bush, what is the first thing Moses is told to do? Take off his shoes.

Rabbi David Wolpe

The Power Of Sharing

04/10/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

Cultural references were once shared. Now, with the explosion and profusion of media, we no longer watch the same shows or listen to the same music.

David Wolpe

Book Learning

03/28/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

If you ask yourself whether Jews really deserve the appellation “people of the book,” consider the following: every synagogue is architecturally designed to highlight the ark, which contains a book;

David Wolpe

The Bitter And The Sweet

03/20/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

The classical explanation for breaking a glass at the end of the wedding is to recall the destruction of Jerusalem. As the glass is broken, everyone screams out, “Mazel Tov!” There is something peculiar, not only about recalling an historic tragedy at that exact moment, but also shouting for joy just as it is recalled.

David Wolpe

The Real Miracle

03/06/2013

For many people, when tragedy strikes, faith is challenged. But as the late David Hartman wrote: “If one’s whole sense of the life of faith depends upon a miracle-based conception of providence and the biblical promises of reward and punishment, then one risks exchanging God for alternative sources of well-being and security. The fundamental issue in the battle against idolatry is to prevent this from happening.”

David Wolpe

The Limits Of Knowledge

02/27/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

In the age of knowledge who will say a nice word on behalf of ignorance? 

David Wolpe

The Pleasure Of Ruins

02/20/2013

Walking through graveyards can be calming and powerful. They enshrine foreverness in a way that nothing else quite does. Each headstone is an emblem of eternity.

David Wolpe

Holding Opposites Together

02/12/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

Deep questions deserve more than one answer. Should we rely on God or on ourselves? In Exodus (14:15), as the Israelites approach the sea, Moses cries out to God. God answers, “Why do you cry out to Me? Tell the Israelites to move forward.” So it seems a moment for self-reliance. But Rashi rereads the Hebrew to mean, “Why do you cry out? It’s on Me.”

David Wolpe
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