Posts tagged " community "

Is praying in a group better than praying alone?

January 7th, 2016 Posted by Ask the Rabbi No Comment yet

Question:

What does the Bible say about group prayer?
Is it more powerful than individual prayer?

∼ Kenda S.

Answer:

Dear Kenda,

You are asking a question that may be particularly apt for our times when technology allows us to access other people without having to leave our homes. Many church services are accessible online and you can easily bring church to you rather than going to a building.

(more…)

Passover – Sex is Everybody’s Business

January 21st, 2008 Posted by Thought Tools No Comment yet

Passover – Sex is Everybody’s Business
By Rabbi Daniel Lapin

The five books of Moses are divided up into fifty-four portions. Every Sabbath a different portion is read so that, taking into account leap years and various other considerations of the calendar, the entire Torah is completed every year. We are currently in the beginning of the book of Exodus, the portions dealing with the Children of Israel leaving Egypt and the holiday of Passover. This portion teaches us valuable lessons about family and society.

For centuries America has recognized that sex is everybody’s business. The community does care about what people do in the privacy of their bedrooms. First Roman law, then English law, and finally American law prohibited polygamy, incest, and, until recently, adultery. These cultures all drew heavily on the Torah which was the first inkling mankind received that regulation of these seemingly private matters helped preserve society. These laws reflected our conviction that we all have a say in what two of our fellow citizens might be doing in the privacy of their bedroom. Even today, on some deep level, we still suspect that sex is everybody’s business. That may be why most of us notify our friends of our intention to mate by announcing our engagements well in advance of the wedding night.

Yet during the past four decades or so, we have uncritically embraced the revolutionary idea that sex is nobody else’s business. Fortunately, the holiday of Passover reminds us that sex is indeed everybody’s business. Read More…

Northwest Storm

December 18th, 2006 Posted by Susan's Musings 1 comment

I am trying to count my blessings. We’re all in good health; we have warm clothing to wear, a gas stove which lets us have hot food, and a house that wasn’t damaged. The temperature hasn’t dipped too low and we have friends with whom we’ve been sharing food and companionship.

But while I’m aware of all those things, I am also beginning to feel tired of being cold, of having to find a Starbucks or Tullys in order to work, and simply of life being disrupted from its normal flow. Instead of breakfast taking the one minute and twenty-eight seconds to prepare as it usually does in the microwave – during which time I bring in the Wall Street Journal and start unloading the dishwasher – I’ve been spending half an hour cooking grilled cheese sandwiches and omelets on the stove. (The fact that we can still use our eggs and cheese gives you some idea of the temperature in the house) Reading for a few minutes before falling asleep has turned into a chore with trying to balance a flashlight and turn pages without taking my hand out from beneath the blanket. Getting dressed in the morning has become less a matter of dressing to suit a mood and the day’s activities, and more of trying to figure out how many shirts and sweaters will fit under my coat. And not being able to do laundry has less the feel of a vacation and more of a punishment. While I’m grateful for my friend Julie’s invitation to shower at her (powered) apartment, and I took her up on her offer, it meant that taking a shower became an afternoon’s activity.

I’m ready for a return to normal after our storm. And vividly aware of how fortunate we are to live in a time and place where the normal condition of life is safe and warm, and where even when a relatively major disruption takes place, as it did for us last Thursday, our community is filled with honest, caring people who band together to make an unpleasant situation less so.

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