Lying on the floor of an airport, unable to move, one learns lessons about prayer, angelic protection, and being one with the Universe. Not always the lessons one would have wanted to learn.Read more
In the Beginning there was Nothing – and Everything.
A new cosmology for 5780.Read more
I am not loyal to walls or cages.
I am not loyal to taunts or tweets.
When I'm done with some of the prayers for specifics, I try to broaden out and pray for love. Always love. That it should enfold this world. That there should be a field of love so thick, so viscous, that it slows bullets and catches falling people.
When I pray, at some point, it is no longer me lofting prayers into the world; it is the world drawing prayers out of me…Read more
When Shabbat falls in the darkest part of the month, the Jewish world reads Torah's queerest story. What is the medicine?Read more
Whether or not we agree with the laws in Leviticus, there is something important about Torah's understanding that the physical body produces spiritual states. Our bodies affect the spiritual fabric of the community. So how do we include our bodies in our spiritual lives? They deserve it.Read more
And indeed as you stand in the Scola Tedesca and look up at the women's gallery, you see what looks like a theater loge. There are low upright pillars to about knee level, and then a gilded latticework screen up to perhaps the neck of a seated woman, and above that it is open. This gallery is not meant to hide the women, but to foster flirtation.Read more
If Torah were a musical, what sort would it be? For Shabbat Shirah, a diversion into the Broadway version of Torah, for which the Parting of the Sea ends Act I.Read more
We are now in the annual 4-week saga of Joseph, and I find myself eyeing him across the ages. I see him young, middle aged and, at long last, at the end of his life, settling in to be a grandmother, the matriarch of his line. (Audio version.)Read more
We don't always say yes to what Shabbat offers. Maybe we say no more often than we say yes. But she never gets the hint. And she never gives up on us. She keeps showing up at the door in all her beauty, the Shechinah robed in time, with the fierceness of lions and the voice of songbirds. And so it is also after a week like this one. A horrible, unthinkable week, here she is again. Despite it all.Read more
Yom Kippur sermon 2018, about my visit to my great-great-grandfather’s grave in Baden-Württemberg, and what it taught me about teshuvah.Read more
In fifteen minutes, or for some of us less, we left it all behind. For the sake of life, for the sake of survival, we left it all behind. Most of us, but not all of us, were able to go back to our smoke-steeped houses in a week or ten days. But on that first night it was the same for all of us: we didn't know if we would have a home to go home to. On that first night, we experienced letting go and leaving behind. With lech lecha in our ears, we grabbed those few things, threw them in the car, and hit the gas pedal into the Unknown.Read more
I ran into the Shechinah in an art museum. It was the Art Institute of Chicago. Maybe not the way it is now, but the way it was when I was a kid. She was in one of the Impressionist rooms. In front of Seurat's Sunday Afternoon on the Isle of la Grande Jatte. (Audio Podcast.)Read more
Audio feed of this fantasy about making perfume for the tabernacle.Read more
Dreams brought me to Germany, and ultimately to a graveyard in Waibstadt, to meet the ancestors. My first reflection on the experience.
The flood was terrible. But what about the days, weeks, 350 years to follow? Noah's story doesn't just end with a rainbow. Every disaster requires recovery.
Dedicated to Rita and Terry Rowan.
The angel's suggestion that behind transformation lies language – that should mean something to us. If we want to mend the field, we start with language; we start with our words. Our words conjure a world. And we want it to be a world that we want to live in.Read more
How does our biblical Creation story set us up for binaries, oppositions, hierarchies? And how does it also call us to see the fullness of the Universe? And how does that affect who we are and how we get along? Rosh Hashanah Drash 5778 –– AUDIO VERSION.Read more
It sounds nice to talk about hate this way; it's nice to convey your values in three words. But hate isn't a thing out there in the world that we can fight. When someone says, "Fight hate," I am really at a loss for what it is I am supposed to do, other than repost the meme.Read more
Angels, nazirites and the Paris Accords. AUDIO version.Read more