This week, I've been dipping into a new/old book on how to live your life. It's called A Strategy for Daily Living by psychiatrist and author Ari Kiev, and was first published in 1973. (And because I live in a bibliophile's house, it was the original, slightly crumbling edition...
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By Adam Siegel
Last week, my colleague and friend Yeshaia Blakeney wrote about the challenge he frequently faces in trying to explain the nature of the spiritual counseling at Beit T’Shuvah (see How to Define Spirituality). In fact, it’s apparently so challenging, that he...
March 21, 2011 | 5:52 pm
- When people say that they are only 5 minutes away, they are really 20 minutes away.
- If your Doctor’s appointment is at 3 p.m., show up at 3:15 to skip sitting in the waiting room. It works like a charm!
- When your kid is going on and on about something, and the story doesn’t...
September 17, 2008 | 11:13 pmMaybe it was because I had just helped my daughter move into her freshman dorm room and I was envious of the deliciously named courses she was thinking of taking. Or maybe it was because I've always been a sucker for pitches like "Conversational Hebrew in One Day!" Or maybe it was...
March 20, 2008 | 6:00 pmI count myself among the most fortunate of 50-somethings because both of my parents are still alive.
Sometimes this weighs heavily on me, like when my mother leaves multiple messages on my answering machine because I haven't called her back -- within the hour. Or when I realize that...
February 28, 2008 | 5:00 pmHow do we build a House of God? How do we achieve the spiritual mandate that God placed upon the community when asking of them to build the Mishkan, the dwelling place of God? Anybody who serves a community as its spiritual leader understands that the nature of my question has little...
March 15, 2007 | 8:00 pmIf your life could change in a moment, what would you want it to be?
Most of us quickly consider what we'd want from the world or from another person: more love, more money, more respect, more health, more learning, more time.
Now, instead of changing factors outside of your life,...
December 21, 2006 | 7:00 pmA number of years ago I had to fly from Los Angeles to Cleveland, with a stop in St. Louis. The plane was supposed to leave at 8:45 a.m. and arrive in Cleveland in the late afternoon. But due to a mechanical problem our flight didn't leave LAX until 1:30 p.m., which put our Cleveland...
September 14, 2006 | 8:00 pmTri-ing to Raise Funds for Israel
Forever diffusing the image of schlubby Orthodox slackers who don't see much of the sun, six members of congregation B'nai David-Judea completed the Los Angeles Triathlon Sept. 10, and raised $8,000 for Israel in the process. Noam Drazin, Ivan...
May 4, 2006 | 8:00 pm
Jewish kids all get A's. It's a fact. They're all well above average. Jewish kids always star in the show, play first violin in the orchestra, win the debate championship. This week the last of the college acceptance letters went out. They all got into Stanford, Berkeley and Brown....
February 23, 2006 | 7:00 pm
February 2, 2006 | 7:00 pm
The Torah has no title page. It has neither an author's introduction nor a preface -- nothing to tell us why the book was written or how it is to be read. The very first line begins with a complete lack of self-consciousness: "In the beginning, God created the heavens and the earth"...
April 14, 2005 | 8:00 pm
One day, Rabbi Shimon Ben Elazar was riding his donkey along the coastal road. He was enjoying the beautiful scenery and reviewing in his mind the wonderful study session he had with his rabbi at Migdal Eder, when he encountered a man who was extremely ugly.
"How ugly you are,"...
February 17, 2005 | 7:00 pm
First, there was the red string kabbalah bracelet popularized by Madonna; then, the yellow "LIVESTRONG" wristband supporting the Lance Armstrong Foundation. Now, there are blessing rings, which may just become the next national craze in message-imbued jewelry. (If they do, you...
May 20, 2004 | 8:00 pm
The Midrash on this Torah portion contains a fascinating note. When the question is raised, why God chose to give the Torah in the desert (and not, for example, on Mount Zion in the land of Israel), one classic rabbinic interpretation given is that the locale is to teach us a lesson...
April 29, 2004 | 8:00 pm
The last episode of "Friends" airs May 6, and while we may all express a collective sigh of relief at the end of more than a year of shameless hype and exploitation, it doesn't mean that we can't stop to reflect on this moment in American cultural history. Or that we don't care about...
February 13, 2003 | 7:00 pm
"The Committed Marriage" by Esther Jungreis (Harper San Francisco, $23.95).
At first glance, the title of Esther Jungreis' new book, "The Committed Marriage," seems a bit redundant. After all, isn't commitment the whole point of getting married?
But what Jungreis explains is...
February 13, 2003 | 7:00 pm
January 9, 2003 | 7:00 pm
For Avi Davis, truth is a blazing light threatening to blind the unprepared.
There are no moderating factors or gradations, just a division between those who can handle its assault and those who can't.
In contrast to Davis' unitary absolutism, traditional Jewish wisdom tends to...
December 26, 2002 | 7:00 pm
Dear Matt and Steve:
Thirty-five years ago, armed with a letter of introduction from one of your grandma's friends to the vice president of personnel at Time, Inc., I got my first job. As you guys begin your working lives, and I listen to your efforts, dreams and disappointments, my...
September 12, 2002 | 8:00 pm
A TV show taping might mean a lot of things to people in Hollywood, but it doesn't necessarily scream: "Killer mate-hunting opportunity!"
Yet, that was exactly the goal of the entities behind a recent taping of motivational speaker Rabbi Irwin Kula's upcoming show "Simple Wisdom"...
October 25, 2001 | 8:00 pm
In 1981, Rabbi Harold Kushner wrote a 150-page book, published with little fanfare, that changed the lives of the more than 4 million people who read it and made its title, "When Bad Things Happen to Good People," part of the vernacular.
After the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks, the 20th...
February 18, 1999 | 7:00 pm
I have learned from the Clinton affair how unprepared our technologically sophisticated society is to deal with moral issues, and specifically how to transmit moral wisdom to our children.
Parents ask, "What are we to say to our children about the conduct of the most powerful...
December 4, 1997 | 7:00 pm
My brother called the other day and asked whetherI had noticed how many people are putting things behind them andmoving on.
"Does that mean they have no baggage?" Iasked.
"Well," he said, "either people have no baggage oran invisible semitrailer is following them around."
May 8, 1997 | 8:00 pmWhy is it that when Jews seek spiritual wisdom, they'll go almost anywhere except their own traditions? Look into any cult, any radical new therapy, any metaphysical society or meditating community, and you'll find Jews far beyond our proportion in the population. And should they...