Archive for January, 2014

SERMON: Miriam, Maharats, Misogyny … & Ariel Sharon

January 13, 2014 Leave a comment

The year 2014 is here and none too soon! I had begun to dread the end of the year. 2013, like other recent years, ended with an onslaught of the 10 Best of Everything! When I grew up the only thing that seemed to count at the end of the year was Time magazine’s “Man of the Year” – one person who had made all the difference in the world! Now, Time magazine makes no difference in the world and so it’s “Man of the Year” has been replaced by a never ending series of media and websites “Top Ten of the Year”: the top ten most influential people, top ten movies, top ten TV programs, top ten discoveries, top ten diseases, top ten news stories, top ten photographs, top ten spices … it is never-ending! Our people – the Jewish people – also have our list of “top ten” – we find them in next week’s Torah portion: the Ten Commandments – but they are not for a given year, they are for EVERY year.

But this year, amongst the top ten lists there were two that captured my attention, because they were, in fact, Jewish lists. The first was a list that came from the Simon Wiesenthal Center listing the top ten anti-Semitic/anti-Israel slurs for the year 2013. The list had the usual culprits: Iran’s Ayatollah Khameni, Turkey’s Prime Minister Erdogan, the leaders of the BDS –Boycott and Diversement and Sanctions Organization. But as I went through the list I couldn’t help but think: there is something sick about this. Do you think that Catholics put out a list of the ten worst anti-Catholic statements? Or Italy puts out a list of the ten worst anti-Italian statements? Why make up a list of all the people who said bad things about the Jewish people … and is there really a top ten? Shouldn’t we Jews be thinking positive as the year ends and a new one begins? Why focus on our tzores when there really is so much that is good? READ MORE


Putting Jews on the Map

January 8, 2014 Leave a comment

The next time someone says “The Jews are too powerful,”  “The Jews control the world,”  “The Jews are occupying territory,” … just remember this map:

World Map of All Religions

Categories: Articles Tags: ,

A modern day question for a rabbi…

January 7, 2014 Leave a comment

Here’s a  modern day question for a rabbi:

Should a lesbian who dresses masculinely be required to wear a dress in an Orthodox synagogue? See what The New York Times‘ Steven Petrow responds in this “Civil Behavior” column: Must This Lesbian Wear a Dress to an Orthodox Synagogue?

Categories: Articles Tags: ,

Talk about an Eishet Chayil!

January 6, 2014 Leave a comment

Something nice to start the week! The IDF published 8 Female Israeli Soldiers Who Shattered Barriers in 2013, featuring chayalot, female soldiers, who challenge stereotypes through the work they do every day.

Soldier number 4 is Baltimore’s own Sgt. Sarit Petersen, Nahal Infantry Brigade Shooting Instructor!

Categories: Articles Tags: ,

10 Roadblocks to Mideast Peace

January 2, 2014 Leave a comment

There is much talk about John Kerry and a Palestinian/Israeli framework agreement. This article gives a good insight on what is going on: 10 Roadblocks to Mideast Peace

Categories: Articles Tags: ,