Religion, Revelation, and the Rolling Stones

Rolling Stones

By Shalom Goldman, Duke University What do the Rolling Stones have to do with religion? Aside from the usual answer—that they are a religion in their own right for many rock and roll fans—they now find themselves in the midst of another kind of religious controversy. Surprisingly, it is a controversy that places, albeit briefly, Orthodox Jews and advocates for the Palestinian cause on the same side of an argument. The controversy arose when the Rolling Stones announced in March that … [Read more...]

“And a Merry Christmas to You, Mr. Netanyahu!”

By Shalom Goldman, Duke University American Jews have long struggled with the Christmas Season. It may not be our holiday, many Jews have felt, but it is after all a great American holiday. How then are we to relate to it? For more traditional Jews, the national Christmas celebration generates anxiety about their place in the American religious landscape. In the second half of the 20th century, as Jews became more assimilated to American society, that anxiety was reduced in two ways: by … [Read more...]

God Speed: “Race Cars for Peace” in the Holy City

Formula One Scuderia Ferrari team driver Giancarlo Fisichella drives a Ferrari F60 past The Tower of David and the ancient walls of Jerusalem's Old City, during the second day of the Jerusalem Formula Peace Road Show

By Shalom Goldman, Duke University In the US, spectator sports and religious conviction often go hand in hand. Americans are used to players, and teams, who pray and play, invoking Jesus before, during, and after games. This happens on the basketball court, in baseball stadiums, and on football fields. And it is most notable on stock car racetracks, where prayers, along with game results, are often heard over the public address  systems. The tone and style of this sports religiosity is … [Read more...]

The NY Synagogue Statement on the Palestinians: Too Little, and 40 Years Too Late

By Shalom Goldman, Duke University A few days after the United Nations voted overwhelmingly to raise the status of Palestine to a “nonmember observer state,” the Rabbis and directors of a New York synagogue caught the attention of the national media by issuing a statement praising the UN for the vote. The Israeli government had, of course, condemned it. In an email message to the members of their large (2000-plus) congregation, Rabbis Rolando Matalon, Marcelo Bronstein and Felicia Sol of … [Read more...]


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