Tuesday, November 26, 2013
Becoming a parent: Parashat Miketz (Genesis 41:1-44:17)
Joseph, the once-favored child of Jacob, rises up from slave and prisoner to become Pharaoh’s right hand. He assumes responsibility for a. . .
Wednesday, November 20, 2013
Blind Spot: Parashat Vayeshev (Genesis 37:1-40:23)
“Holy, Holy, Holy is the Lord of Hosts; the entire earth is filled with his glory” (Isaiah 6:30). If Isaiah is correct, with every step we take,. . .
Thursday, November 14, 2013
Surrender as prayer: Parashat Vayishlach (Genesis 32:4-36:43)
What do you do when your back is to the wall? When tensions are so high, annihilation seems imminent?
Wednesday, October 30, 2013
The wells of peace: Parashat Toldot (Genesis 25:19-28:9)
Wells, water, history and peace. Seems like as much as the world changes, advances and develops, some things remain intact, remain essential to our. . .
Wednesday, October 23, 2013
Kindness connection: Parashat Chayei Sarah (Genesis 23:1-25:18)
Did Avraham attend Yitzchak’s wedding? Well, in the closest thing we have to a wedding description — right at the end of this parasha — Avraham. . .
Wednesday, October 16, 2013
In the face of strangers: Parashat Vayera (Genesis 18:1-22:24)
This week’s Torah portion begins: “YHVH appeared to Abraham as he was sitting at the entrance of the tent … looking up, he saw: behold, three. . .
Wednesday, October 9, 2013
The long and winding road: Parashat Lech Lecha (Genesis 12:1–17:27)
The day God pronounced two simple words — lech lecha — Abraham and Sarah’s lives changed forever. God instructs Abraham to leave his homeland,. . .
Thursday, October 3, 2013
In the family way: Parashat Noach (Genesis 6:9-11:32)
Word went out from the congregation that a longtime member was nearing the end of her life. She has no partner and no children, but, on the day after. . .
Tuesday, September 24, 2013
Each day is a choice: Parashat Bereshit (Genesis 1:1-6:8)
Only a couple of weeks ago, we were all feeling the holiness of Yom Kippur. By the end of the day of fasting, beautiful music, insightful teachings. . .
Wednesday, September 18, 2013
Feast or Famine: Sukkot
According to the rabbis, the holiday of Sukkot commemorates the 40 years of wandering in the Sinai Desert, and we eat and sleep in a sukkah — that. . .
Wednesday, September 11, 2013
Spiritual dispatches: Yom Kippur
“This is Kol Yisrael from Jerusalem, Reshet Aleph and Reshet Bet. Shalom and Gmar Hatimah Tovah. It’s 3 p.m. An official IDF [Israel Defense. . .
Tuesday, September 3, 2013
With the end in sight: Parashat Ha’azinu (Deuteronomy 32:1-52)
I met a man on my hospital rounds with a full head of white hair, powerful arms and a purposeful gaze who was dying of leukemia. He was the president. . .
Wednesday, August 28, 2013
Returning with God: Parashat Nitzavim-Vayelech (Deuteronomy 29:9-31:30)
Outside of Baltimore, smooth country roads swept like rivers between banks of undulating forest. As my wife and I coasted past rolling hills of. . .
Thursday, August 22, 2013
Crossing over: Parashat Ki Tavo (Deuteronomy 26:1-29:8)
“When you enter the land that YHVH, your God, is giving you as a heritage …” (Deuteronomy 26:1).
Wednesday, August 7, 2013
When ‘just be good’ isn’t enough
“Why all these values, rabbi?” preteen Josh asked. “Can’t you just say we should be good people?” Often it is the most basic questions that. . .
Thursday, August 1, 2013
Glatt or not? Parashat Re’eh (Deuteronomy 11:26-16:17)
The Torah says that the laws of kashrut separate us from the nations and make us a holy people by precluding us from eating detestable things. . .
Wednesday, July 24, 2013
Circumcise your heart: Parashat Ekev (Deuteronomy 7:12-11:25)
A friend who works for the federal government wrote recently to say that because of the U.S. Supreme Court’s decision on DOMA (Defense of Marriage. . .
Wednesday, July 17, 2013
Guess how much I love you
There is a well-known children’s book depicting a nut-brown hare and its child playing a game called “Guess How Much I Love You.” In it, the. . .
Wednesday, July 10, 2013
How best to honor diversity?
This is the week of Tisha b’Av, the 9th of Av, when we mourn the destruction of the Temples. Why are we still mourning when Israel has been reborn?
Tuesday, July 2, 2013
Station to station: Parashat Matot-Masei (Numbers 30:2-36:13)
We conclude the reading of Bamidbar (Numbers) this week. Over the course of the book, the children of Israel spend approximately 40 years in the. . .
Wednesday, June 26, 2013
Women of the word: Parashat Pinchas (Numbers 25:10-30:1)
On a recent trip to New York, I spent Shabbat morning at The Jewish Center in Manhattan, a vibrant Modern Orthodox community. As services came to a. . .
Wednesday, June 19, 2013
Dwelling together: Parashat Balak (Numbers 22:2-25:9)
My father, originally from a small-town farm in Kansas, converted to Judaism when I was a young child. You can imagine that my seder table looks a. . .
Thursday, June 13, 2013
‘Because I say so’: Parashat Chukat (Numbers 19:1-22:1)
“This is the decree [chukat] of the Torah” (Numbers 19:2). Isn’t it amazing how, as we get older, our parents seem to become wise?
Thursday, June 6, 2013
Lies, lies, lies
My daughter, a soon-to-graduate high school senior, was chosen by a teacher to participate in an event to teach the school a lesson about drunk. . .