Hello Temple Sinai ! It’s been weeks since we’ve had a regular Friday night service, so I must admit I’m really looking forward to just such a service this week. It seems like a good time of year to find warmth in the familiar. I know many of you might be heading out of town, […]
Hello Temple Sinai,
Well, the Rock Shabbat and Great Brisket Bakeoff was outstanding! I had a blast and it was fantastic to see so
many in the community come together to celebrate.
This weekend we have several special services I want you to know about…
I confess I never much liked Hanukkah. It seemed like a crappy substitute for Christmas trees and presents and Santa. I know my Hindu American friends felt the same way about Divali. It wasn’t until I spent Hanukkah in Jerusalem, with the smell of fresh sofganiyot everywhere, hanukkiot in every window, and the enormous flames of the […]
Hello Temple Sinai! First of all, THANK YOU FOR SUCH A BEAUTIFUL, MOVING, and FESTIVE INSTALLATION!!! I am deeply grateful to all the work people did to make it happen, all the donations and well wishes, and it seems a great kick-off to the future. Thank you! Because it is Hanukkah, and the Installation took […]
I know I might not have been the profile everyone had put in their “Tender for Rabbi’s” search , but that first weekend, I felt that spark of connection and it seemed like one of those rare bashert moments in life – when fate and free will come together…
Judaism only works if it makes our busy lives better, and I believe Judaism and Jewish tradition, if lived intelligently, is a technology for making our lives richer and more joyous, more connected – Our tradition is an epic life hack, if we engage it actively.
When people think of Judaism and Jews, I don’t think that ‘a culture of gratitude’ is the first thing that pops into our heads.
We remember that our people k’vetched constantly after leaving Egypt.
We know that Jonah wanted to die when God forgave Nineveh.
Moses himself said, “these people are just too much for me to handle.”
The prophets railed about, well, everything.
And Yom Kippur feels more about beating ourselves up than giving thanks.
And I’ll admit, that I have always been a bit suspicious of people are overly grateful. It’s a bit too Candide for me, a bit “it’s the best of all possible worlds and it couldn’t possibly be any better.”
Hello Temple Sinai,I am so excited and honored to have my installation ceremony this Friday night. It is the service-version of signing my contract, like a wedding is the service-version of signing the ketubah. A lot of people have been working very hard on it, planning food, decorations, invitations, entertainment, and the service. I think […]
Hello Temple Sinai,I hope you have a lovely Thanksgiving with family and friends, or that you will be getting some well deserved R&R (my plan!). I also forgot to mention at service last Friday night that last week was Transgender Awareness Week, and the Transgender Day of Remembrance was on Tuesday, 11/20. We know that […]
As I understand it, in Latin American folk culture, there is a belief in “el mundo Bueno” and “el mundo malo” – the good world and the bad world. The two worlds exist side by side, and sometimes, if we are not careful, we can unknowingly step from the good world where things make sense and people are basically good, into the bad world, where nothing makes sense and people turn into monsters.
Sometimes lately, it seems as if we have stepped through from one world into a another, where what we thought we knew, what we thought was settled is turned upside down. We see nationalist anti-Semitic marches with the government in Poland. We see shootings in synagogues. We see openly anti-Semitic white-nationalists running for and sitting in Congress. We see the press attacked as the enemy of the people. We see “alternative facts.”
I think for many of us, the last two years and especially the last few weeks have triggered those fears, and for us as Jews, this universal fear of “the bad world” carries particular weight. It is in our living memory. We carry it in our collective epigenetics.
That is why I found the Torah portion this week to be such a gift.