Tag: Being Jewishly

Living Judaism with heart, soul, and all we have.

Tree of Life’s members will do everything for the 11 dead except show up in their place.”
– Pittsburgh rabbi to Mark Oppenheimer, from the latter’s “The Tree of Life Synagogue Shooting and the Soul of a Neighborhood”

L’Shana Tovah!

THE JEWISH LUNAR/SOLAR CALENDAR begins the New Year 5782 tonight at sundown. The classic understanding of that number reflects the years since the world’s creation, but many of us find that explanation somewhat problematic. On the other hand, humanity’s recorded…

Our relationship to Torah is not based on asserting its factual historicity — whether based on “proofs” or “assertion despite reason.” Instead, each individual’s connection to scripture is based on the premise that the biblical narrative reflects an authentic religious experience that envelops some sort of reality and expresses it in a narrative and poetic fashion.”
— Rabbi David Bigman, “Refracting History Through the Spiritual Experience of the Present”

When faced with [a piece or opinion of Torah] that is on its face absurd or contradictory, the rabbis do not dismiss it, but actively work to understand it. What would it look like for us, when someone says something apparently illogical and absurd, to assume that they are making some kind of internal sense and actually thoughtfully work to understand their reasoning?”
— Sara Ronis, “A Daily Dose of Talmud (Pesachim 78),” @myjewishlearning.com

If my audience will feel that these interpretations are also relevant to their perceptions and emotions, I shall feel amply rewarded. However, I shall not feel hurt if my thoughts will find no response in the hearts of my listeners.”
— Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik, The Lonely Man of Faith

Fixing a Hole

RECENTLY, I RECEIVED SOME SPAM from Chosen People Ministries (one flavor of the Jews-for-Jesus-ers). When their website’s response-form asked why I wanted to unsubscribe from future mailings, I wrote, “Exodus 20:3; 1 Kings 18:21. Go play with someone else.” They…

The Torah Guides’ Torah Guides

THE TORAH CAN BE A great read — inspiring, comforting, uplifting, provocative — but without the explanatory input of generations of commentators, it can also be a bit daunting. Fortunately, Jewish tradition has portioned this essential text into weekly bites…

First Graf: Torah

(BE HONEST — YOU MUST HAVE known I’d get around to this one eventually, right?) I make no rigid claims of authenticity, accuracy, or authorship for this work. As far as I’m concerned, this is “simply” a collection of ancient…