Can't I be even a teeny bit resentful that I do all these good deeds, behave in all the right ways, and God (whatever and whoever that is) didn't see fit to save my son's life?
What does love have to do with religion? For so many Jews, especially in America, the answer is, regretfully, nothing. For many, the idea of practicing Judaism is wrapped up in a sense of obligation and fear -- a responsibility to not let something so old die out.
As a Catholic who observed closely the resignation of the emeritus pope and elevation of Jorge Bergoglio, in March of 2013, with hope and some suspicion, I find myself vexed by the profuse adulation Pope Francis I received during his visit to the United States.
Of course I would go. The White House itself is a draw on a beautiful fall day. I finally arrived on the south lawn with the green grass expanse between the White House rear balconies and the Washington monument. Magical.
"Rabbi, could I get a glass of water?" asks Rose. It's Yom Kippur, a fast day, and we've just finished Kol Nidrei. This person is one of the seventy who have shown up at our home, Base, where I also happen to work. Rose has an eating disorder and is not supposed to fast.
In the spirit of Yom Kippur, I would like to do some of my own reflective and repentant work about white privilege, a topic that can benefit from the courage and heightened clarity that Yom Kippur brings.
As I write, it's Yom Kippur -- the holiest day in the Jewish year. It's 25 hours of fasting, praying, repenting and confessing. In that spirit, here's an uncomfortable admission. I kind of like Ann Coulter. Don't get me wrong, I disagree with much of what she says.
Have I repented? Have I asked for redemption of my transgressions? Have I become a better person because I have looked into my heart and my soul and asked for guidance to set my life on a course that will cause His countenance to shine upon me? I certainly hope so - but in the end, that's really between me and my God.
I can say three things for sure about God, all unscientific in the extreme, on the basis of the Yom Kippur liturgy.
It wasn't the first time I woke up to something like this on my Facebook newsfeed: "Grandma is sick and we're not sure how long she has... Please ke...
I think Debbie Wasserman Schultz should apologize for issuing a statement with no basis in fact and wasting her time on a totally wrong-headed, insulting attack -- and for invoking the holiest day of the Jewish year to make her bogus points.
Today I am sitting at my son's graveside. It is where I have spent the last ten Yom Kippur holidays. This is called the Day of Atonement. Most Jews spend this holiest of days in synagogue praying and fasting. We are tasked with evaluating our behavior and asking for forgiveness. I used to do it this way.
My young daughters are living proof that Hitler failed. He tried to eradicate the Jews, but we choose life and hope. And since it is the Day of Atonement, I forgive the person at WGN who made this unfortunate mistake.
As we go through life, we are not always prepared for the roars of the cannon, momentous changes that alter the course of our lives. For example, any one of us or our loved ones may seem perfectly healthy one day, then receive a serious diagnosis of illness the next.
There's a strange divide in the United States today. On the one hand, Pope Francis is visiting us for the first time. He urges us to welcome Syrian ...
This year, still grieving my stillborn son, I struggle with questions of guilt and forgiveness that my schoolgirl self could not have fathomed. How do you say "I'm sorry" to the baby whose eyes will never see the world outside his mother's womb?