Stuck in the middleReal life dilemmas mirror Israel's situation all too well.
Is he a little too Jewish? Is Israel?There is no question as to David Friedman’s abilities or credentials. The problem with Friedman is that he is too openly Jewish for the Reform Movement.
Damage controlThe laws and consequences of human behavior.
The real test of new Jewish movementsOpen Orthodoxy wants to make Judaism palatable to modern trends. But that is all they are - trends.
The paradigm for Jewish survivalThe entire story of the Jewish people descending into Egyptian slavery and then being extricated is essentially supernatural in detail.
Crises in Jewish historySome crises are gradual and some sudden.
Jacob lives onYaakov recognized the different personalities, qualities and talents of each of his children and grandchildren.
Our brother Joseph stands before usIt is hard to change one's mind when it means changing an entire mindset.
College campusesWe are back to the days when Jewish students kept a low profile.
Difficult decisions for the courts and the KnessetIsrael's front page issues are all about the difficulty of decision and the limitations of compromise and plea bargains.
Are parents responsible for how their kids turn out?The story of the two brothers, Esau and Jacob, is a paradigm.
Chayei Sarah: Mothers of IsraelThey are stalwart, loyal and above all, cognizant of the need to create a future for the Jewish people.
Unpopular leadersPopularity is a very slippery way to judge the correctness of policies and the competence and temper of leaders who will be judged by history.
God's seal is truthThe Talmud describes our world as being “a world of falseness.”
Looking at generationsToday many of us have the chance to look at several generations of our family in our lifetimes.
Rebuilding the world on lovingkindnessGiving in to the weaknesses of human nature that surround us and that we are constantly made aware of by the media and other story mongers, is a sign of human foolishness and not wisdom.
Self worthThe Abraham figure as a model for the future.
Sukkot perspectivesThe only happiness that is lasting and meaningful is an inner happiness not caused by outside stimuli or fleeting factors.
Haazinu: A poem with stanzasThe poem that has guided the Jewish people.
Vayelech: The lodestone of Jewish lifeMoses predicts what will happen.
Haredi society in Israel is slowly changingThe slow change in values and lifestyle in that community has already begun.
Awesome warningsEverything in its minutest detail did befall us.
Seeing the futureThe entire concept of reward and punishment is based on a concept that it is the future that counts most in life.
The broadcasterBaseball as a metaphor for life.
Thinking correctly and clearlyJudaism is, in its essence, a clear and simple faith. This point is hammered home over and over again by Moses in his grand final oration to the Jewish people.
History in VaetchananWe have a different story.
Putin and RioThe Olympics are tainted by money, politics and moral pressure.
If King Zedekiah would have listened to Jeremiah...The prophet was the realistic one.
Looking for ourselves in DevarimThis is the book of perspective, of the long view of events.
To know where to go,look at where you started fromLook for wrong turns and poor choices that Jewish history makes plain.
I don't knowThe title is probably a sentence we all should be saying and hearing more often than we do.
Matot (Israel): Conformity or unity?Why have 12 tribes instead of one undivided nation?
Counting the JewsWe find it so much easier to memorialize the dead than to inspire and consecrate the living.
Rabbinic responsiblityHow far does rabbinic responsibility go?
The book of bad behavior: BamidbarMoses' fate is decided in this reading.
Korach (Israel): Moses cannot be judged by ordinary standardsWe find it difficult to deal with people who are our peers and whom we feel we can understand and even judge.
Irrational, but there it isWhat was the driving force that made the Jewish people resist their entry into the Holy Land?
Cause and effectWhat is striking to me about the current Conservative mantra is that apparently nowhere does God appear to be in the picture...
Behaalotcha (Israel): What brought on the rebelliions?Wise men should be careful with their words and actions.
Amalek, then and nowAmalek cannot be wished away, it is resurrected in every generation.
Haazinu - Listen!Can you still hear the echo of the shofar at Mount Sinai?
Selichot the Traditional WayThe traditional selichot prayers, whether Ashkenazi or Sephardi, have secured a place of permanence. The new Israeli version lacks heart and loses the sense of continuing the heritage of generations.
Jewish History is Predicted in This Week's Torah ReadingIf there is one portion of the Torah that truly rattles our cage, this week’s Torah reading is certainly that portion.
Shoftim: Judicial ParametersIt is possible, if not even likely, to create evil, bias and unfairness by legal means.
Fact and Opinion: One and the Same for Israel-HatersThe entire worldwide campaign against Israel and its legitimate right to exist is built upon falsification of facts.
Parshat Korach: G-d Threw His Support Behind MosesKorach tried, but G-d is not a populist.
Depths of Fear and HesitationMoses apparently miscalculated the level of fear of the Jews in the desert.
Beha'alotcha: Searching for PerfectionThe search for perfection in human life is equivalent to drinking saltwater in an attempt to slake one's thirst.
He's Got Our BackNo one has ever really Israel's back - so why should we believe Obama?
Bechukotai: Eternal ResilienceThe true message that shines forth from this week’s Torah reading is that of the eternal resilience and strength of the Jewish people.
Polls and PunditsPolls can be accurate, so why weren't they in the two recent significant elections?
Behar: Imagining IsraelAnother lesson in the mentioning of Mount Sinai.
Emor: The Jewish Attitude Towards DeathTorah from the rabbi of the Nasi Synagogue in Jerusalem.
Counting the OmerSfira reflects much of what our ordinary lives experience – a mixture of emotion and occurrences.
Impudence and ImpotenceScience could learn a great deal from religion in terms of humility. Religion itself can also benefit greatly from its own lesson of humility.
Vayakhel-Pikudei: AccountabilityMoses held himself accountable for every shekel spent on the Tabernacle construction.
What Could Have BeenNot everything in the past was perfect.