September 2015 archive

Sukkot- Embracing Imperfection

    I hate not being perfect. When I discover a typo in an email that I’ve sent, it’s painful. If I forget to call someone, I beat myself up. I know- it’s an impossible standard. And it’s not so healthy, because I sometimes, then, kind of, sort of, also expect other people to be …

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Cast Out. . .

    Rosh HaShanah begins, joyously and appropriately, with the story of the birth of Isaac. A beautiful metaphor for all the possibilities of a new year. And yet, something is drastically wrong. If we look just below the surface, there is a sub-text of bullying and exclusion. First, there is this reference in Genesis …

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High Holiday Reflections- 5776

    Erev Rosh HaShanah- The story of the Jewish people begins with God saying to Abraham, “Lech Lecha – Go forth.” Abraham and Sarah pack up their life and their family and go, having no idea where their journey will lead them. Beginnings are exciting and frightening, especially when we don’t know where we’re …

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A Tribute to David at Yizkor

    This is my first yizkor. I graduated from rabbinical school 34 years ago, and have led yizkor services multiple times every year since then. Yet, and, this is my first yizkor. It has always been a point of personal pride to smugly excuse myself, at least symbolically, from the yizkor service. As if …

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The Whole World is a Fragile Sukkah- Hashkivenu

Yes, Erev Rosh HaShanah begins on Sunday, yet, as we turn to the Hashkivenu, I’m thinking about Sukkot. “Ufros alenu sukkat shlomecha- spread over us a sukkah of peace.” When we sit in our Sukkot in a few short weeks, we are reminded of the fragility of our homes and the vulnerability of the lives …

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How To Be Good

HOW TO BE GOOD   As we come together this evening to begin the High Holiday season in earnest, we all are, or should be, obsessed with one question- “How to Be Good”, which is coincidentally, the name of a novel by Nick Hornby which I read this past year. The title was guaranteed to …

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