A lab analysis of a swastika-stamped bar of soap said to be made from Holocaust victims shows no human remains.
Biting off more than most of us can chew, husband and wife authors Joel R. Primack and Nancy Ellen Abrams have taken on the enormously ambitious task of tackling that age-old question: How did the world get here, and does our existence really matter? Their new book, "The View From the Center of the Universe, Discovering our Extraordinary Place in the Cosmos" (Riverhead Books, 2006), uses cosmology -- the astrophysical study of the history and structure of the universe - to meld "Meaning" and science to reach a greater understanding of the origins of life.
I've always kept a mental list of places about to disappear, such as the ruins of Angor Wat in Cambodia. Never -- ever -- was New Orleans on that list.
The Israeli-Palestinian conflict is not a Muslim issue.
In 1947, a group of parents led by Gonzalo and Felicitas Mendez of Westminster fought to end California's segregation of its Latino school children. Their suit came to the attention of the state's governor at the time, Earl Warren, who went on to hear the Brown case as chief justice of the nation's highest court.
On Shavuot, we read special sections from the Torah. One of those is the Ten Commandments. The first five are engraved on the right tablet. The second five on the left. The first five, according to the rabbis, fall into the category of commandments "between humans and God" -- like: Do not make idols or worship other gods. The second five fall into the category of "between human and human." But the commandment "Honor thy father and mother" is on the second tablet. Is this a commandment between humans and God?
We believe in a God who dreams. The Torah is the story of the transaction between God's dreams and human reality. God dreams of a world of goodness. God creates humanity - fashioned in the divine image - to share the dream. But human beings betrayed God's dreams. We filled the world with violence and murder. God despaired of having created humanity and decided to wash the world clean. But one human being caught God's eye - one good man. So God saved Noah and his family, together with a set of earth's animals to begin the world again.
As a scientist and a believer in human progress, I have been concerned about how well the established process of teshuvah (repentance) has worked. Yom Kippur after Yom Kippur - in fact, since the 11th century - we have recited the same confessional prayer, "Al Chet." If we were any good at repentance, shouldn't the list have changed in 1,000 years? Even if we don't want to change the ancient formula, shouldn't we be able to feel that we had eliminated or reduced at least a few on the list? Yet the list of sins remains the same, as does the ritual for expunging them. Why haven't we improved?
Consider the lyrics of Cheryl Wheeler's song "Unworthy":
mes the same thing that got you into trouble can get you out of it. Take for example the fact that in last week's Torah portion, our ancestors used their gold jewelry to fashion a golden calf. For this act of idolatry and faithlessness, thousands were killed as God's anger poured down upon them like a river of fire.
Before God created the human being, according to alegend of the Midrash, He consulted the angels of heaven. The angelof peace argued, "Let him not be created; he will bring contentioninto the world." But the angel of compassion countered, "Let him becreated; he will bring lovingkindness into the world." The angel oftruth argued, "Let him not be created; he will be deceitful and fillthe world with lies." And the angel of justice countered, "Let him becreated; he will attach himself to righteousness." What did God do?He threw truth into the Earth and proceeded to create the humanbeing.