Monthly Archives: August, 2016

City Lights – Enlightening Cities

August 11th, 2016 Posted by Thought Tools 1 comment
It was on a clear but cold winter afternoon that I landed at JFK Airport on my first visit to the United States.  After clearing customs and immigration and being granted a three week tourist visa, I climbed into a taxi on my way to my Manhattan hotel.  Half an hour later, as the sun was starting to set, the cab swept around a curve in the Brooklyn-Queens Expressway and for the first time in my life my eyes fell upon a sight of which I have never tired.  The towering skyscrapers of lower Manhattan silhouetted against the still blue sky took my breath away.  I found myself silently mouthing these words, “How great are your works, Oh Lord!” (Psalms 92:5) as tears started up in my eyes.  It was then, only a couple of hours after first setting foot upon the continent of North America while driving up the East River towards the Brooklyn Bridge that I resolved to stay.  And, though no longer on a tourist visa, I’m still here.

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Are Christians responsible for the Holocaust?

August 11th, 2016 Posted by Ask the Rabbi 7 comments

Question:

I am Christian. But my Jewish friend lost most of his family during Hitler’s Holocaust. He firmly believes, Hitler notwithstanding, that it was the basic principles and practice of Christianity that set the stage for the Holocaust. Is there anything I can say to him? 
Thank you for reading and considering this question.

∼ James

Answer:

Dear James,

The first question you need to answer is whether your friend is dispassionately discussing history or emotionally explaining why he distrusts Christians and/or Christianity. The fact that you say, “Hitler notwithstanding,” suggests that he acknowledges that Hitler hated the Church only somewhat less than he hated Jews. The answer to that question will decide if and what you should say.  (more…)

What Trumps Abortion?

August 4th, 2016 Posted by Susan's Musings 21 comments

Wow! That was my reaction when I checked a week ago Friday morning to see if anyone had left a comment on the Musing I wrote about Ted Cruz’ speech at the Republican convention. There were more views to my page by 9 a.m. than I usually get within 24 hours. A few hours later, my husband mentioned that Facebook was going wild with comments about my words. So it continued. People were agreeing, politely disagreeing, grateful for and wildly upset by my words. What is my take-away and why am I going to stir the cauldron by continuing the debate as well as introducing the topic of Trump and abortion? (more…)

Take Uber to the Temple

August 2nd, 2016 Posted by Thought Tools No Comment yet
While awaiting my Uber car in Minneapolis the other afternoon, I received a message saying Uber was initiating rush hour surge pricing.  Almost immediately, the driver who had committed to taking me to the airport cancelled – no doubt with the intention of replacing me with a higher ‘surge’ priced fare.  Needing to catch a flight, I tried again. This time all that was immediately available near my hotel was a far more expensive “Uber black car”.  The driver got me to the airport promptly and comfortably, though hardly economically.
The next day, my son to whom I’d related the incident, urged me to report it to Uber.  Using the app on my phone, literally within less than one minute, I registered my disappointment about the first driver’s cancellation. Less than six hours later, Christian at Uber contacted me, crediting me the difference between what I paid and what I would have paid had the first driver honored his commitment.

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How do I raise my son in the ways of the Bible?

August 1st, 2016 Posted by Ask the Rabbi 1 comment

I am a Christian who lives in Indonesia. I am a frequent listener of your podcast and blessed to find tremendous wisdom in your teaching. I am keen to learn about the root of my faith from Hebrew Bible, at which I believe, as you believe, as a God-given blueprint for our life.

As a recent father, it is my desire to show my child the way of the Lord. Thus, I have a question; what is the best way to teach Torah to our children (especially toddler to under 12 years of age). What is the best method/technique to convey the narrative to them while at the same time conveying the wisdom/substance (which some stories I find them may not be suitable for children. I want to learn from your perspective as rabbi and Jewish parents on how to impart your wisdom to your children.

Thank you and God bless,

∼ Nugroho H.

Dear Nugroho,

Congratulations on the new blessing and challenge in your life. You are asking a wonderful question. Wouldn’t it be nice if for $99 you could purchase a curriculum that would guarantee that your children will view the Bible the way you do? Of course, no such program exists.  (more…)

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