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Showing posts from October, 2009

AIPAC Luncheon

On Wednesday I attended a lecture with David Horovitz, editor-in-chief of the The Jerusalem Post . After reassuring the attendees that there is a day to day feeling of calm and security in Israel and especially in Jerusalem, he went on to say that there is a sense of crisis because of three simmering issues: 1. The need to separate from the Palestinians in order to preserve the Jewish and democratic character of the State of Israel. This need is creating a growing sense of angst because there is no viable partner with which to make peace. The vast majority of Israelis share two conflicting feelings: the Jewish imperative to make peace tugging against the fact that there is no one with which to talk. 2. The growing existential threat of Iran. Soon there will be a regime who agitates for the destruction of Israel combined with the means (namely nuclear weapons) to carry out these aims. A nuclear armed Iran remakes the region and is unacceptable to Israel. The vast majority of Israe


Our synagogue's website has a new feature: podcasts. You can listen to my High Holiday sermons on the website or subscribe through iTunes. You will also find there regular interpretations of the weekly Torah portion, called "Three Minutes of Torah." Occasionally I will share longer talks about contemporary events. To listen through the website click here . To subscribe with iTunes click here .

Happy Simhat Torah!

Moadim l'simha--happy holidays! There are two Jewish ideals that are realized in the holiday of Simchat Torah which begins today, October 9 (according to the Reform and Israel calendar). 1. The joy of Torah. There is nothing more joyous than studying Torah. On Simchat Torah we celebrate the fact that we are privileged to begin again the Torah reading cycle. Simchat Torah is analogous to rebooting your computer. Even if you haven't finished all of your work, even if you haven't finished reading every story, even if you haven't finished studying every word, every once in a while you have to start all over again at the beginning. 2. You really can't dance by yourself. You need your friends. You need the swirl of others. You need your community. Celebrating by yourself is impossible. The community adds to your happiness. This is the Jewish contention. We understand this truth best when we are surrounded by others at our own simchas. This content

Gilad Shalit Video

Below is the video, recently released by Hamas, of Gilad Shalit, who has been held prisoner since June 25, 2006. Israel released 20 female prisoners, serving terms for various terrorist activities, in exchange for the video. I imagine the video brings both a measure of relief and some pain to Gilad's parents. May Noam and Aviva soon hold their son in their arms!