Torah for Shabbat: Shabbat Nachamu, The Shabbat of Comfort after the Ninth of Av.

July 23, 2021 by  

As Moses continues his speech to the children of Israel, he repeats two core texts that underpin the whole of the Jewish way of life. Read more

Uncritical Race Theory

July 23, 2021 by  

Let me say at the outset that Critical Race Theory is a dangerous, completely unsubstantiated pseudo theory of race that has now become dogma in academia. Read more

Get follies

July 16, 2021 by  

We often witness the insensitivity and negativity of rabbis who seem unaware of the damage they can do when they claim to be upholding Jewish Law. Read more

Are we Khazars?

July 9, 2021 by  

Arthur Koestler was another brilliant, but deeply disturbed Jewish intellectual to emerge from twentieth-century Hungary (no need to mention all the others). Read more

Torah reading: Shabbat Pinhas

July 2, 2021 by  

Our reading this week starts with God praising Pinhas for his dramatic action in killing Zimri and his mistress the Midianite princess Cozbi, as they defied Moses and the rest of the community.  Read more

Women Rabbis, again!

July 2, 2021 by  

What is it about Chief Rabbis? Perfectly nice, intelligent human beings, yet when they get to be Chief Rabbis their spines turn to jelly. Read more

Rabbi Jeremy Rosen: Shabbat Balak

June 25, 2021 by  

It seems strange that the whole Parsha we read this week should be named after a Midianite/Moabite King, Balak, and be devoted to a non-Jewish magician Bilam.
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Thought for the week

June 25, 2021 by  

On Sunday is the fast of the Seventeenth of Tammuz. It is a minor fast that lasts from dawn to dusk and ushers in a period of mourning that leads up to the 9th of Av when we commemorate the loss of two Temples. Read more

Religious politics

June 18, 2021 by  

The personal attacks on Naftali Bennet coming from the Charedi parties in Israel because he has been instrumental in excluding them from power and has stood up to their blackmail are disgusting. Read more

Hate Signalling

June 11, 2021 by  

I have a love-hate relationship with the New York Review of Books. Read more

Philip Roth

June 4, 2021 by  

Philip Roth (1933-2018) was one of the most successful American novelists. Read more

Conversion

May 28, 2021 by  

The Bible nowhere explicitly talks about conversion, only about taking care of, and not oppressing the stranger, the Ger. Read more

Whose side are you on?

May 21, 2021 by  

The latest round of fighting between Palestinians and Israel continues what has been a Hundred Years’ War and will in my opinion continue possibly for another hundred. Read more

Shavuot, Torah, and Humanity

May 14, 2021 by  

As rockets continue to rain down on our families in Israel, and a civil war rages with mobs of hooligans attacking peaceful citizens and neighbours, I pray for three things. Read more

Armenian Genocide

May 7, 2021 by  

April 24th is the date of the annual memorial that  Armenians observe to recall the horrific massacres carried out by the Turkish Government in 1915. Read more

Meron

April 30, 2021 by  

This week we celebrated Lag BaOmer, which is the thirty-third day of the Omer that I described two weeks ago. Read more

What’s wrong with us?

April 23, 2021 by  

Israel’s 73rd Independence Day was an annual reminder of as close to a miracle as it gets. Read more

What is an Omer?

April 16, 2021 by  

No, not the town in the Negev! The Biblical Omer refers to the sheaf of barley that was brought to the Temple, the day after Pesach, to mark the beginning of the new agricultural year. Read more

Big and Little Lies

April 9, 2021 by  

The culture we live in nowadays is one of lies. The truth is that it has always been thus even if at certain stages, the lies have been more venal and destructive than others. Read more

Missing Children

April 2, 2021 by  

One of the darkest episodes in the history of Israel is the ghastly story of the missing children of poor immigrants from Arab lands, airlifted to Israel  (on the Wings of Eagles project) in the early years of the State. Read more

Freedom

March 26, 2021 by  

The New York Review of Books has recently devoted a lot of space to a review of “The Sword and the Shield: The Revolutionary Lives of Malcolm X and Martin Luther King” by Peniel E. Joseph. Read more

Who is a Jew?

March 19, 2021 by  

Why is there such a fuss over the Israeli Supreme Court’s decision to allow converts to Judaism, as defined by the Reform and Conservative movements, to qualify for Israeli citizenship under the Law of Return? Read more

Mr Cohen of Ballachulish Ferry

March 12, 2021 by  

A week ago, I gave a Zoom talk for the Scottish Jewish Archive centre. Read more

1848

March 5, 2021 by  

The course of human civilization, if one can use that term, has progressed and continues to, in a series of slow cycles.  Read more

The Lost Ark

February 26, 2021 by  

So many people love conspiracy theories, fantasies, and lost causes. Read more

Purim or Poor Them

February 19, 2021 by  

Purim is the happiest and craziest day in the Jewish calendar and the only festival that celebrates an event in the Diaspora. But is it really? Read more

Darkness

February 12, 2021 by  

It is almost a year since we first got an inclining of the disastrous Covid19. No one, not even the holy World Health Organization had any idea of how serious it was or how it would spread with it so much death, pain, and gloom. Read more

The greatest rabbi in the West

February 5, 2021 by  

In the latest edition of the Brooklyn Jewish journal  Hakirah, there is a fascinating article on Rav Joseph Ber Soloveitchik (1903 -1993) by David. P. Goldman entitled The Rav’s Uncompleted Grand Design. Read more

Louis Jacobs

January 29, 2021 by  

Any Anglo Jew from the 1960s will be familiar with the “Jacobs Affair” that divided the Jewish community more than any other religious debate in its history. Read more

Hard-hearted

January 22, 2021 by  

My last blog was intentionally controversial. The aim was to point out that people rarely seem capable of hearing, let alone absorbing another point of view. Read more

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