The CNS Board, Staff, and Clergy recently sent out a letter showing our commitment to support the movements of justice for Black, Indigenous, and People-of-Color (BIPOC). Click here to read the statement
For the entirety of our existence as a Jewish people, the Torah has imagined a world where we’re not stratified and strangulated based on income or job description. Imagine if every 50 years (or every 7 years) we reevaluated and took a serious look at where we’ve been, what we need to continue to thrive, and how we can help others to do the same.
The Talmudic reason we don't blow the shofar on Shabbat is because Shabbat is holy enough without it. And our memories are strong enough that we can recall things like the sound of the shofar, the sight of the Purim costumes, or the smell of kiddush lunch at shul, and it’s like we’re there.
This year (5780) was the first time I had a full Yom Kippur fast since 2012, since previously I was either pregnant or nursing. But as important as the role of self-denial is during the holiday, the Talmud suggests that self-care supersedes it.
When I met Duncan, he had never kept kosher in his life. On our second date, when it seemed like there might be more dates in our future, he asked me about what it meant for me, a conservative rabbinical student, to be dating him, a life-long bacon cheeseburger-eating reform Jew (his words, not mine).
How do you find spiritual fulfillment? Maybe it's through traditional prayer, or maybe it's through a walk in the woods or a jam session with friends. This week's Torah portion suggests it might be confusing to offer alternative paths to spiritual connection, but as a rabbi I take the opposite approach.
As we read Parshat Vayikra, especially at a time when our community simply is not physically able to come together in person to apologize, to forgive, and to move on, we are reminded that each of us holds the key to our own journey to forgiveness. And perhaps an added benefit of this period of isolation is merely the time to look inward and finally use that key. Shabbat shalom.