Tonight let us remember the bad and the good that came over our people and be grateful for the way the Elohim is helping us day in day out.
Time of distress should never be an excuse to not follow the mitzvah of our God. As such now in a time of lockdown, being isolated we should still have a Memorial Meal.
Before the Israelites escaped Egypt they solemnly prepared themselves for their escape and had the seder in their closed circle, what we shall have to do in 2020 as well.
At a borough of the German city Mönchengladbach, located in the west of North Rhine-Westphalia, a group of American soldiers observed Purim in Goebbels' vacation home, Schloss Rheydt on March 8, 1945.
The League of Nations, which placed Palestine under British mandate reflected a heady mixture of religious and imperial motivations that Britain would find difficult to reconcile in the troubled years ahead. Palestinian Arabs, desiring political autonomy and resenting the continued Jewish immigration into Palestine, disapproved of the mandate, and by 1936 their dissatisfaction had grown into open rebellion. Nearly a century later there is still not yet a good solution found to have Arabs, Palestinians and Jews and non-Jews living together in peace in one or two countries they could accept as their homeland.
All should know that the discrimination and displacement inside Israel's 1948 borders are connected to its rule in those Occupied Territories. This system of violence deprives all Palestinians of civil, political, and economic rights.
On Thursday the 23rd of January 2020 a dedication ceremony for a memorial took part at Jerusalem's Sachar Park in honour of the casualties the Siege of Leningrad. After the attendance of the 5th World Holocaust Forum Russian President Vladimir Putin, PM Benjamin Netanyahu, President Reuven Rivlin, Jerusalem Mayor Moshe Leon, the Russian foreign minister, mayor [...]
Video screening of the live broadcast of the 5th World Holocaust Forum at Yad Vashem on January 23, 2020
Marking the 75th birthday of the liberation of the Auschwitz-Birkenau concentration and death camp it is good to demand that active steps shall be made to make sure the horrors of the Holocaust shall not be repeated and future crimes against humanity shall be prevented by states reacting in the right way in time.
A look at the progenitor or forefather of the tribes and faith groups believing in and following the Only One True God of Israel.
Time to come face to face with the King in the field.
Today, Wednesday, the 20th day of the Jewish month of Menachem Av (August 21), marks 75 years since the untimely passing of Rabbi Levi Yitzchak Schneerson, of righteous memory, father of the Rebbe, of righteous memory. Rabbi , was respected as one of the greatest Talmudic and Kabbalistic scholars of his generation. He served as [...]
The Hebrew phrase tikkun olam (pronounced tee-KOON oh-LUHM) means "world repair." In modern Jewish circles, tikkun olam has become synonymous with the notion of social action and the pursuit of social justice. Created in the image of God each human being is requested to come close to the Bo're and to be a partaker of a marvellous peaceful world to which each member has to contribute out of free will. In order for the balance between good and evil intended by God to be restored, humans must be involved in the world's reparation and can not keep aside or aloof or 'do nothing' to get social justice or a better world.
- point of Judaism = tasked with mission > Judaism antidote to many of the greatest problems we face in the 21st Century.
- religion gives a sense of community, purpose + meaning.
- why progressive Judaism = our way forward
- Progressive Judaism has come under attack.
- Jonathan Neumann’s book entitled ‘To Heal the World?’ its subtitle – ‘How the Jewish Left Corrupts Judaism and Endangers Israel’ – tells everything you need to know about this book. = argues that progressive Jews distorted Judaism + created their own denomination, completely divorced from tradition.
- Jewish mysticism > world in which we live = broken => through pursuit of social justice > begin to heal it => (for Neumann) idea = innovation = ideology of American New Left + Jewish theology.
- ‘tikkun olam’ new development= rallying cry to bring together many of issues on which Jewish community in America was campaigning, particularly black civil rights, women’s liberation + international peace.
- idea > Judaism’s core = one of social justice = integral to progressive Judaism since its inception.
- Rabbi Abraham Geiger in 19th Century Germany, argued > soul of Judaism =/= in its laws > = in its prophetic texts.
- Reformers repositioned Judaism from its narrow focus on ritual to universalist message of justice.
- Prophet Elijah harbinger of messianic redemption = first among our prophets to promise that messianic age is coming.
- promise of liberation = built into very understanding of what it means to live a Jewish life => must participate in building it through pursuit of justice, by following consciences, + by seeking to make the world a more loving place.
- tikkun olam’ message can be found throughout the Tanakh, rabbinic literature, + our liturgy = core of what Judaism calls on us to do.
- Neumann argues deviation from traditional Judaism > progressive Judaism must be contrasted with ‘traditional’ Judaism => seems not to understand Orthodox Judaism = a modern innovation = response to modern world, that takes a conservative approach to life + a dogmatic approach to commandments.
- at our most Jewish when we are sharing food with others.
- Neumann’s idea of traditional Judaism = narrow + limiting
- progressives, halachic observance + social justice are not competitors = complement each other.
- food laws help > force to think ethically about consumption.
- Shabbat = joy > teaches value of rest + holiness of God.
- All rules + rituals have value > turn us into disciplined, conscientious people, who will seek out justice when it is necessary.
- Progressive Judaism > point of Judaism =/= rules in themselves => = pursuit of better world through rules
- message = clear > short time on earth + here with a mission => tasked with a sacred purpose of perfecting the world, demanding justice and pursuing peace = point of Judaism +> Let us work to heal the world together.
What is the point of Judaism?
Last night, I gave a defence of Judaism for the disengaged. I argued that religion gives us a sense of community, purpose and meaning. I talked about how Judaism is an antidote to many of the greatest problems we face in the 21st Century.
This morning, I want to talk about why progressive Judaism, specifically, ought to be our way forward. Progressive Judaism has, in recent years, come under attack. Last year, Jonathan Neumann released a book entitled ‘To Heal the World?’. Its subtitle – ‘How the Jewish Left Corrupts Judaism and Endangers Israel’ – probably tells you everything you need to know about this book.
In it, he argues that progressive Jews have distorted Judaism and created their own denomination, completely divorced from tradition. He pours scorn on one idea in particular, that of ‘tikkun olam’. The basic premise of this…
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- Tikkun olam = Hebrew for “to heal or to repair the world.” = popular catchphrase among left wing American Jewish rabbis + social activists > ancient teaching of Judaism =>religious foundation for their politics.
- Jonathan Neumann concludes in To Heal the World that it isn’t = argues tikkun olam provides a religious covering for a political ideology: “social justice” arrived via non-religious means.
- “Social justice = political philosophy advocating redistribution of income + wealth + other property in order to achieve economic egalitarianism
- social justice includes an agenda of permissive social policies that leave lifestyle questions to the discretion of individual + promotes gender diversity
- attitudes + policies associated predominantly with today’s left-wing political parties
- perceive social justice through prism of intersectionality
- To Heal the World doesn’t offer a comprehensive critique of social-justice policies => deconstructs notion that tikkun-olam-as-social-justice bears any necessary relationship to Judaism = social justice scheme promulgated by the Jewish left “corrupts Judaism + endangers Israel”
- 18th + 19nth centuries, European Jews began to experience increasing freedom from legal restraints + social prejudices that had hitherto been placed on their communities by Christian states. => shed particularistic rituals of traditional Judaism + emphasize Judaism’s universalistic ethics (Kantian)
- postwar America > commitment to universalistic ethics > expressed as tikkun olam.
- Reform Judaism’s relationship to traditional Judaism critical from the beginning > at its inception to distance itself from Judaism as it had been practiced historically. + universalizing mode rendered Jewish particularism highly problematic, including its longings for Zion.
- In early to mid-twentieth century, Reform Judaism rethought both these points, + sought to root its thinking in Tanakh + to give qualified support to the nascent Jewish state.
- Jewish Left’s use of tikkun olam = problematic. > tikkun olam itself “never meant what American Jews now understand the term to mean.”
- tikkun olam/social justice Judaism problematizes very existence of Jewish identity > moral themes derived from sources other than the Bible.
- Social justice has no need for Jews > involves their very dissolution into rest of humanity.
- Jews ancient heritage something unique to say = particularism for sake of universalism, > precedent deep in Bible + Jewish tradition = through Abraham’s offspring all nations on earth will be blessed
- leftwing Judaism and tikkun olam parallel with liberal Protestantism + “Social Gospel.”
- Reform Judaism drew part of its inspiration from Social Gospel movement. => question whether relationship between Social Gospel + traditional Christianity is as biblically + theologically problematic as th relationship between tikkun olam + traditional Judaism.
- Whole Grain Judaism Part 2
- Yes, to heal the world
- Constructivist: Tikkun Olam
- Tikkun or fixing… happiness or misery… the invisible dynamic
- Tikkun Olam
- The Tikkun Olam Behind Big Business
- Ki Tisa – Torah Portion
- Repairing the World.
- Mystical Activism
- My niece’s Tikkun Olam project supports keeping families together
- What Does Israel do for the World?
- The Heart Repair of Hanukkah: Blessing Each Other’s Light
- Tending the Light ~ Justice & Equality for All
- Repairing the World
- Jonathan Sacks – Jerusalem, the Beating Heart of Jewish Faith
- How Israel Treats Her Neighbors
- I came for the Zionism, I stayed for the everything else
- The Worst of Israel
Tikkun olamis Hebrew for “to heal the world.” It has become a popular catchphrase among leftwing American Jewish rabbis and social activists. According to them, it is an ancient teaching of Judaism, and therefore a religious foundation for their politics.
The only problem is that it isn’t. At least that’s what Jonathan Neumann concludes in To Heal the World. He argues that tikkun olamprovides a religious covering for a political ideology that has been arrived at via nonreligious means. And that political ideology is “social justice.”
Here’s how Neumann defines that political ideology:
“Social justice is a political philosophy that advocates the redistribution of income—and sometimes even wealth and other property—in order to achieve economic egalitarianism…. In more recent decades, social justice has also come to include an agenda of permissive social policies that leave lifestyle questions to the discretion of the individual and promote gender diversity…
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