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Thoughts on George Floyd's Death #630

06/05/2020 05:50:00 PM

Jun5

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

Thoughts on George Floyd's Death

 

In this week’s edition of The Forward, leaders from 24 Jewish organizations shared their reactions to the brutal killing of George Floyd.

Of those contributions, I was most proud and inspired by the Biblical quotation and comments contributed by the Academy for Jewish Religion — the seminary from which I graduated exactly 10 years ago.

The quote, shared by CEO and...Read more...

Shavuot - The Holiday Without a Hook #629

05/29/2020 05:48:00 PM

May29

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

Shavuot: The Holiday with a Hook

 

Today, my mind is blank, because I don’t quite know how to inspire on this Shavuot — one of the most important, but least celebrated, days on the Jewish calendar.

Everyone knows Passover — it’s about freedom, matzah, Seders and family.

On Sukkot, we dwell in simple huts, ponder our fragility and focus on humility. On Yom Kippur we fast,...Read more...

Judaism's Newest Tribe #628

05/22/2020 05:16:00 PM

May22

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

Judaism's Newest Tribe

What is it about Judaism that so many feel they don’t belong? 

Within a religion where there are...Read more...

Torah, Pandemic and the Environment #627

05/15/2020 06:00:00 PM

May15

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

Torah, Pandemic and the Environment

Probably one of the most important, yet overlooked, lines in the entire Torah appears in its early chapters.

The Torah instructs us about the environment.

Over the years, with all of the discussion in Genesis about whether God created the earth in six days, or whether the world evolved over time, we have tended to gloss over God's instructions to humanity — to protect and guard the...Read more...

Coming out of our Caves #626

05/08/2020 05:45:00 PM

May8

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

Coming Out of Our Caves?

There is a story in the Talmud about how Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai — perhaps Judaism's most renowned ancient Kabbalist — achieved his great spiritual understanding.

In 126 CE, when the Romans ruled Israel under Emperor Hadrian, the study of Torah was forbidden. Many of our most famous rabbis died defying that order.

But Rabbi Shimon bar Yochai and his son Eliezer had a better idea. They...Read more...

Coronavirus — What Are We Learning? #625

05/01/2020 05:25:00 PM

May1

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

Coronavirus: What Are We Learning?

Recently, as I was speaking with a colleague about how his congregation was managing during the pandemic, he sighed and posed a question: "When, I wonder, will things get back to normal?"

I replied, "I think we are in the new normal."

Indeed, the loss of more than 65,000 Americans during the current coronavirus epidemic is — at minimum — heartbreaking, and in most ways, obscene and...Read more...

the Torah and Social Distancing  #624

04/24/2020 02:50:00 PM

Apr24

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

The Torah and Social Distancing

Each year, I dread this week's Torah portion.

After all, who wants to talk about rashes, skin diseases, bodily purification and leprosy? Rather, we prefer the Torah to stimulate us with ancient stories and bits of wisdom to apply to our daily lives.

But this year, probably more than any in our lifetime, this week's double Torah portion — titled Tazria-Metzora — comes alive, as...Read more...

the Virus and the Kosher Antidote  #623

04/17/2020 05:36:00 PM

Apr17

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

The Virus and the Kosher Antidote

Is it just me, or does it seem that we are all gaining weight during this time of isolation?

We were supposed to cook healthier, eat lighter and shed a few pounds now that we are confined to our homes.

And to some extent, that has been the case. So why is it, at least for me, that the opposite seem to be true?

So how interesting it is, that this week's Torah portion, Sh'mini,...Read more...

Did God Invent the Internet?  #622

04/10/2020 05:05:00 PM

Apr10

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

  DAYENU ("It would have been enough")   If God had given us doctors and nurses, it would have been enough - dayenu!   If God had given us doctors and nurses, but not given us amazing teachers - dayenu!   If God had given us amazing teachers, but not given us the Internet - dayenu!   If God had given us the Internet, but not given...Read more...

The Crumbs in our Soul  #621

04/03/2020 05:25:00 PM

Apr3

Rabbi Irwin Huberman

The Crumbs in our Soul

This will be a Passover like no other.

In a world so consumed by the coronavirus, how can we find within Passover the meaning and comfort we so desperately need?

Like everything these days, our world has been turned upside down.

We are concerned about our health, and the health of others.

Rather than planning who will be sitting next to each other — or not — at...Read more...

Sat, August 8 2020 18 Av 5780