The value of acknowledging misperceptions

Here’s a true story about false impressions – and the wisdom (and holy risk) of voicing them aloud. In my day job, I preside in hundreds of judicial proceedings. I take seriously a judge’s… Continue reading

Coming and Going

Einstein’s Theory of Relativity and this week’s Torah portion (Bo, or “Come!”) – named for a word seemingly gone wrong – have something in common. First the Torah, then the Theory: “God said to… Continue reading

How to Be a “Player” in Jewish Life

What does it take to be a “player” in Jewish life? No, not that kind of “player.” I mean, what does it take to be a responsible and influential participant in the Jewish… Continue reading

Prayer for the Musmachot

These are the names of the daughters of Israel Who came into the womb of narrow unknowing Each with her household, to be rebirthed anew, Called by name at the moment of becoming… Continue reading

The Light Behind the Darkness of a Holocaust Survivor’s Story

It was December 25, 2016 – Christmas Day and Chanukkah. Volunteers gathered with local seniors to sing songs, serve holiday foods and feed some who couldn’t feed themselves. Like the jelly-filled doughnuts we… Continue reading

Ch- Ch- Ch- Changes

David Bowie’s 1972 classic touched a national nerve. Change is inevitable: we can only “turn and face the strain.” (Others quote Bowie’s refrain as “turn and face the strange,” to similar effect.) Soon the… Continue reading

Saying No to Silencing: The Jewish Duty to Speak Out

Spirituality is biography. Jewish spirituality and Jewish biography both demand a duty to speak out, reject silencing, and stand up against any power that would silence another. Such is the call of Chanukkah and this moment… Continue reading

I Have a Dream

If you’re a dreamer (we all are), read on: this post is about you. “I have a dream.” With these words, dreamer Dr. Martin Luther King Jr. propelled the American nation along the… Continue reading

Wrestling in the Dark Night

The human mind is a marvelous machine – always scanning and planning. Among the mind’s “programs” is worst-case thinking, wrestling to assert control over potential threats. Maybe you do this: I know I do. A… Continue reading

The Cosmic “Why Me?”

If you or someone you love ever suffered, you probably asked why. “Why me” is a constant echo in history and the human psyche – and it doesn’t matter whether the echo is… Continue reading