To say that religion is divisive is to attempt no analysis of the problems at hand. It is to stop at the surface making no effort to dig deeper for the underlying problems seething underneath.
For me, as a rabbi and millennial, the 50th anniversary of Nostra Aetate's promulgation evokes an odd mixture of upset and profound gratitude.
There is no question that the document Nostra Aetate ("In our Time") -- promulgated by the Second Vatican Council in October 1965 -- changed the discourse in the field of Jewish-Christian dialogue in particular, and interreligious dialogue in general, in the contemporary period.
Bill Cosby is what he is, and he did what he did. I'm not here to comment on that. As for how his greatest creation is remembered, that's up to all of us collectively. What I'll say is that it had a tremendous effect on me, personally.
Given that a multicultural, multiracial and Jewish identity are inseparable from one another and inform each other, Jewish experiences and education need to more accurately reflect how this population sees itself.
When you think of teens today, "religious" might not be the first word that comes to mind. A common perception might be that teens are too shallow to embrace something as complex and introspective as spirituality. But why is this?
The Jewish Community is one of Law----or Faith, emotional connections, and a relationship established through mutual interaction in various proscribed ways- for example, through prayer, or celebrations, and the like. This is at least in part what a community is.
I call upon both leaders to re-launch immediately a meaningful peace process that would lead to a two-state solution. Now more than ever, the two parties have a unique opportunity to work collaboratively to re-set the agenda for a long-term peace.
My teacher Emil Fackenheim once challenged me with an idea full of tension. Speaking of Jerusalem as a metaphor in our prayers is all fine and good, until you now have political power over the real Jerusalem.
We tend to take them for granted. Even pastors or rabbis who teach and preach about them can forget how revolutionary they once were. We can begin to see them as a decorations in courtrooms rather than a sacred call to live by sacred values.
In light of new evidence that 2015 will likely be the hottest year ever recorded, Muslim, Hindu, Christian, Jewish, Buddhist and other religious leaders joined together at the Parliament of World Religions pledging faith-based action to combat climate change. The event took place in Salt Lake City, and brought together over 8,000 people from scores of faiths and nations.
Because we are beyond sick at the number of young Black people killed by the police just this year. Because as white and non-white Jews, we want to oppose systems of oppression and injustice. So, white people, white Jews, what are we going to do?
Having practiced Judaism for nearly thirty years, I have performed the intricate tap dance of being a black person in the majority Jewish country, and I am reminded of my experiences as a black soldier in the Israel Defense Forces (IDF).
We can't make it illegal for an Orthodox Jew to refuse to sit next to a woman on a plane, but we shouldn't have policies that honor his prejudice -- any more than we would provide sanctioned support for a passenger's desire not to sit next to a person who is Jewish, or black, or gay.
An Orthodox Jewish friend asked me, with some real perplexity in her voice, why I wasn't Orthodox. "You love Torah study. You davven [pray] regularly. What keeps you from being Orthodox? I don't understand it."
The crush of religious people I have just witnessed is staggering. Under one roof, a tapestry of faiths flock together -- Buddhists, Christians, Sikhs, Muslims, Humanists, Jews -- congregated in a singular location to discuss some of the most pressing matters facing humanity today.