I and You : Reflecting on Understanding the Other

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How often do we truly put ourselves in the space to encounter the other in our world? How often do we truly break down the other and see the unity that shines through? These questions have been on mind since I went to a very special event this past week at the DuSable Museum of African-American History in the Hyde Park neighborhood of Chicago. The event was a dialogue between mothers and between mothers and sons on raising young men in the African-American community. I was there in an official … [Read more...]

Benediction at 2013 Colorado 9/11 Memorial

The following is the benediction I offered at the 2013 Colorado 9/11 Memorial presented at the Newman Center at the University of Denver:Twelve years ago. Twelve years ago the unthinkable happened. Twelve years ago our world was forever changed as nearly 3,000 people; men, women and children, perished on that clear September day. We were shaken. We were horrified. We were terrified. Yet, something else also happened: We raised our flags. We extended our hand to our neighbors. We picked each … [Read more...]

An Experiment for Rosh Hashanah

Let me offer you a small experiment/challenge for this upcoming Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. The purpose of this experiment is to see if it changes the way you experience your time in synagogue during this most important time of the year. Just this one year, perhaps even just for one service, try the following:Try to become more of a participant and less of a critic. A participant immerses him or herself into the experience. A participant suspends the skepticism and tries to get the most … [Read more...]

One Year Since Aurora

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The following is a modified version of the sermon I delivered this past Shabbat on the one year anniversary of the shooting at the Century Multiplex in Aurora, CO:One Year Later: What Have We Learned from Aurora?“Be comforted, be comforted, my people (Isaiah 40:1)” With these words synagogues around the world opened their Prophetic reading for this past Sabbath, from the prophet Isaiah. This Sabbath, the Sabbath immediately following the 9th day of the Hebrew month of Av, is named after t … [Read more...]

Kumare: The Allure of Otherness

I watched the documentary Kumare this weekend and I was struck by its portrayal of the development of a religious community and the search of people for meaning and fulfillment in their own lives. The movie follows the filmmaker as he morphs into an Indian Guru and plants himself in Phoenix, Arizona where he develops a coherent belief system and attracts followers. Throughout the movie he attempts to convey to his followers that they actually do not need a Guru and they can be their own … [Read more...]

A Prayer For Boston

The following is the message I sent out to our community after the bombings at the Boston Marathon. As the City of Boston lay in the grip of fear and lockdown during the manhunt for the suspected bomber, I believe these words hold as true now as they did on Monday:Our hearts are heavy and our eyes are red with tears as we read, watch and listen to the reports about the terrorist attack today in the great City of Boston during the Boston Marathon. Those who inflict these acts of barbarism and … [Read more...]


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