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Jewish on Earth

G-d is in the summer camp

TO those who say we never see miracles or talk directly with G-d anymore, I say, “Nonsense.”

We constantly stand in their presence; we just fail to appreciate them.  We fill our lives with distractions, and only notice miracles that hit us over the head, like tornadoes, volcanoes and earthquakes, or childbirth, infatuation and skydiving.

It’s like Mel Brooks describing how the concept of G-d originated (in “The 2,000 Year Old Man”): after lightening killed the terrifying tyrant Phil, Brooks says, “We looked up at the sky and said, “There’s something bigger than Phil.”

Last Updated ( Friday, 01 July 2011 11:35 )

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Everything is local

The primary emphasis of Western religions is to celebrate events that occurred in one place — the Land of Canaan (a.k.a. The Land of Milk and Honey, Judea & Samaria, Roman Palestine, etc.). That focus on one locale provides a counterintuitive lesson for our now-globalized world: everything is still local. It’s where we live, work, politic, make policy, educate ourselves, shop, gather, sleep and practice our religions. Yes, much of what we do today is linked to, or depends on regional, ...
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Making Earth Day meaningful

THIS year Earth Day fell on the Friday of Pesach. It was successful: the earth is still here. Of course, the earth was here before humans arrived, and will be here long after they’re gone. However, I vote for delaying our exit. How about you? When I wrote this column, most of us were complaining about eating the bread of affliction. Complaining is good — it’s the first step toward creating change. At the seder, we celebrated our progress since leaving poverty and affliction in ancient Eg...
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Three commandments of environmentalism

WE skeptical humans have always greeted novelty with suspicion. We prefer what makes us feel safe and comfortable, not what challenges us. That’s why concepts like global climate change, carbon trading, waste-free business and social equity confound us. It’s easier and more comforting to believe that climate change is a hoax, carbon cap and trade hurts business, we’ll always create waste, and some people deserve (a lot) more than others. But imagine 3,300 years ago when we Hebrews were ...

Last Updated ( Thursday, 07 April 2011 11:21 )

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Appreciating what we have

PERHAPS Israel should change its national anthem from “Hatikva” to “Dayenu.” For the Jewish State, so dependent on the support of powerful allies, a song that expresses thanks and delight for every new blessing seems more appropriate than a patriotic, historical, sentimental national anthem. But as the Middle East is all about chest pounding and historical pedigree, Hatikva may fit the bill better. It’s solemn, and people take it seriously. The problem is, no country’s national anth...
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Shabbat Times

JTA News

Dutch chief rabbi was warned to avoid train travel

Cnaan Liphshiz The police advice was due to Jacobs’ official function, for which he often appears on television, making him easily identifiable. ... [Link]

Amid fighting in Syria, Holocaust survivor’s grandson plans aliyah

Cnaan Liphshiz Timothy Jacobs-Woodworth, 37, scrolls the Breslov Hasidic slogan on buildings that he helps Kurds reclaim from ISIS fighters. ... [Link]

Israel’s football team wins first international game

Marcy Oster The Israelis defeated Spain, 28-20, in Madrid in a bid to qualify for the International Federation of American Football’s B-Group International Tournament in 2016. ... [Link]

Massive gas field discovered in Mediterranean off Egypt’s coast

Marcy Oster The field is significantly larger than Israel’s offshore Leviathan field, which had been considered the largest gas field in the Mediterranean. ... [Link]

Facing declining numbers and a bad economy, Italian Jews stay upbeat

Ben Sales High unemployment, a 50 percent intermarriage rate and growing numbers leaving for Israel would seem like worrisome developments, but the leaders of Italian Jewry are confident in the future. ... [Link]

Bernie Sanders closing gap on Hillary Clinton in Iowa, poll shows

Marcy Oster Clinton, who reportedly has lost a third of her Iowa supporters since May, led 37-30 percent over the Jewish Vermont senator in the survey of likely caucusgoers. ... [Link]

U.S. national industrial union endorses BDS of Israel

Marcy Oster The United Electrical, Radio and Machine Workers union accused Israel of ethnic cleansing and said it was the first U.S. national union to endorse the boycott movement. ... [Link]

Wasserman Schultz reportedly nixed Dems’ vote on backing Iran deal, praising Obama

Marcy Oster The Jewish chair of the Democratic National Committee has not taken a position on the agreement and her Florida district is heavily Jewish. ... [Link]

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