Intra-Faith

Attribution: By Guillaume Paumier (Own work) [CC-BY-3.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/3.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

We Have No Water

Israelis control Palestinian water resources, directing two-thirds of it to Israeli settlers who use three times the amount of water Palestinian homes do. Palestinians must buy their own water back from Israel. Israel also controls the flow to the private family cisterns, and families receive a refill once every five days. My host family corrected […]

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New York City, 7.21.14, photo courtesy of Ilanit Goldberg

Noticing the Shadow of the Cross

As a rabbinical student and someone who wears a kippah every day, I think of myself as being pretty comfortable with being Jewish. Since starting to wear a kippah in public in 2009, I have gradually grown more and more comfortable with being publicly Jewish and religious. While I have been harassed for being Jewish […]

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Pictofigo_Friendship

Hospitality or Friendship ?

These days there is a lot of talk of hospitality in the field of theologies of religions.  Some time ago I presented a paper at the global congress The World’s Religions after September 11 on the concept of interfaith friendship as a bridge for peace.  As I read and reflect on the use of the term […]

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Taken by Jenn Lindsay in Rome on July 17, 2014.

The Roman Jewish Vigil for Israel

In the Piazza della Rotunda of the Pantheon, at the heart of Rome, there was a rally in support of Israel held by the historic Roman Jewish community. Traces of trauma from World War II are here, scattered throughout the cobblestone streets in gold plaques marking former homes of Jews murdered over the tortuous last years […]

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Image courtesy of Elise Alexander

Beware Standby Mode

Earlier this month, State of Formation and the Journal of Inter-Religious Studies graciously offered me the chance to join them in a tour of the US Holocaust Memorial Museum followed by a discussion of Holocaust education and the phenomena of collaboration and resistance, especially among people of faith.  It was, to say the least, a […]

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On Loving the Stranger — Parashat Kedoshim

This week, we are returning once more to Parashat Kedoshim, filled with its many interpersonal mitzvot. In the opening verse of the 19th chapter of Leviticus, God enjoins us to be holy, for God, Godself, is holy. The chapter then lays out ways in which we are to be holy, including proper ritual and interpersonal […]

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On Divine Exile and the Sacred Act of Welcoming (Part II)

This post is a continuation of Part I. It is my intention to now explore and explicate concrete ways in which we, as individuals and communities deeply concerned with the well-being of others and of our world at large, can transform the physical world and our sacred communities such that they become sanctuaries for the […]

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On Divine Exile and the Sacred Act of Welcoming (Part I)

This is the first part of a two-part post. In “Man’s Quest for God”, a series of essays on prayer, Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel writes: “The Shechinah [Divine Presence] is in exile, the world is corrupt, and the universe itself is not at home. To pray, then, means to bring God back into the world, […]

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Source: Steven Depolo (Attribution via Flickr Commons)

“I Wanted to Be an Iconoclast”: A Protest Against the Pledge of Allegiance and a Call to True Iconoclasm

This past week, my stickler-for-the-rules seven-year-old son got in trouble at school for refusing to stand for and recite the Pledge of Allegiance. This refusal came not from a strong familial protest against any particular clause in the pledge. Instead, my son had decided on his own volition – without revealing his plan to me, […]

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Learning from Others – Intra-Faith Engagement

I was recently at a talk at Yale, where the Chaplain’s Office hosted a tea for me with students. It was a wonderful opportunity to speak to a rising generation of young folks who are interested in religion, and inter-faith interaction in particular. They wanted to know what I got out of the work and […]

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