Partners in Torah brings you Harry's Video Blog and the always entertaining Harry Rothenberg. In this week's Torah portion, Parshat Terumah, the Jewish people are commanded to build the Tabernacle and the Ark while still in the desert. Trees don't grow in the desert.
After the natural disaster, begins the race among readers of holy texts to say something stupid regarding the "reason" for the suffering. This is especially tempting when the weekly Torah portion, Vayera, is the tale of the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah.
Any Jew, Christian or Muslim who bothers to look into the face of Sikhism will find the face of the God of Love looking back. The same is true for any of the world's religious and spiritual traditions.
Forgiveness clears our mind of the detritus of a million small grudges, lifting the burden and physical and psychic stress of resentment. It has been established: people who forgive easily lead healthier, happier and more spiritually meaningful lives.
Is religion fading in Britain? According to the latest influential British Social Attitudes Survey (BSA), just released this December, half of us Brits do not belong to any religious grouping or affiliation.
Awe of creation and the Creator permeates one of the central biblical texts of Rosh Hashanah: the binding of Isaac. In a Jewish-environmental context, one rabbinic interpretation might be called an "eco-conscious" reading.
Consider Abraham, one of the cornerstones of the Judeo-Christian faith. He's the man from whom we all descend. But according to his example, I should be willing to kill my own children to prove I am a faithful servant of God.
In this land where Abraham is revered both as a prophet of Islam, through his first-born son, Ishmael; and as father of the Israelites, through his second-born child, Isaac -- this is clearly a situation in need of new ideas.
To become the founding father of a nation, one had to challenge the status quo. From Lincoln through both World Wars, the presidents preserved the honor and tradition of America. All of those dynamics changed during the 37th presidency.
We all want to laugh, provide for our families, lead meaningful lives, fall in love and be happy. Those are not Jewish or Muslim or Christian ideals -- they are human ones, and they can bring us together.
The right wing punditry is at it again this year, stirring up a sense of victimization by claiming there is a "war on Christmas". In fact, Christianity wouldn't exist without the eclectic collection of ideas and practices that were the diverse roots from which it grew,
Abraham's feeling of need to show faith in this way was fundamentally misguided. God had already established a covenant with him in Genesis 17; his decision to sacrifice Isaac went well beyond the scope of their pact.