Mijn Crescas

Inloggen met gebruikersnaam & wachtwoord

Zonder wachtwoord snel inloggen?


Weblogs disclaimer

Nathan Lopes Cardozo

Rabbijn Dr. Nathan Lopes Cardozo (1946) werd geboren in Amsterdam en woont sinds 1977 in Israël. Als kind van een Portugees-Joodse vader en een niet-Joodse moeder heeft hij een lange weg afgelegd. Op zijn 16e is hij ‘uitgekomen’ (Joods geworden) bij Chacham Salomon Rodrigues Pereira. Jaren later haalde hij zijn rabbijnentitel aan de orthodoxe Gateshead Yeshiva. In Jeruzalem richtte hij de David Cardozo Academy op en geeft lezingen in Israel en het buitenland voor Joden en niet Joden. Hij is de auteur van 15 boeken. De laatste twee: “Jewish Law as Rebellion. A Plea for Religious Authenticity and Halachic Courage” (Urim Publications, 2018) en “Cardozo on the Parasha, Bereshit” (Kasva Press, 2019),het eerste van 7 delen op de Tora en de feestdagen. Rabbijn Lopes Cardozo neemt in zijn geschriften geen blad voor de mond en zijn ideeën worden in de velerlei media fel bediscussieerd.

vrijdag 28 juni 2019

Part 3 of my struggle with persuasion and the truth concerning other religions. Ten Questions for Rabbi Cardozo by Rav Ari Ze'ev Schwartz. For question 10 Part 2, see here.

Question 10, Part 3:
In your writings, you quote both rabbis and philosophers. On the one hand, you draw your insights from great rabbis such as the Rambam, the Kotzker Rebbe, Rav Kook, Rav Abraham Joshua Heschel, and Rav Eliezer Berkovits. On the other hand, you seem to equally find inspiration from great philosophers such as Baruch Spinoza, Emmanuel Levinas, Franz Rosenzweig, and Martin Buber. Rabbis tend to focus on loyalty to tradition, while philosophers seem to feel freer to question and seek truth regardless of tradition. Rav Cardozo, do you see yourself more as a rabbi, or as a philosopher? And part two of this question: Do you think that having the official title of "Rabbi Cardozo" suppresses your true thoughts, or does it rather help to express them?

Nathan Lopes Cardozo: Before I continue to answer your questions, I need to rectify one mistake in my last "Thoughts to Ponder”. The pope sits on the seat of Peter, not Paul.

Let me now continue answering your questions.

While I am proud to be called "Rabbi" Cardozo, I also feel handicapped by the title. First of all, it's an enormous responsibility to be called "rabbi." The moment you carry that title, you are held to higher moral standards than most other people, and you need to always be on your best behavior. People expect you to behave like an angel, which is extremely hard because at the end of the day you're just a human being with all the limitations that go along with it. Who says I am able to live up to this? I do my best but I know my shortcomings. So this title of rabbi is somewhat unsettling.

But there is much more. As a rabbi, you are expected to toe the rabbinical party line. One has to comply with other "greater" and more influential rabbis and chief rabbis, and you're not allowed to express your own ideas and halachic insights unless you work by the conventional guidelines established by most present-day halachists who have, in my humble opinion, a most narrow reading of Halacha.

This was not the case in the past, when it was taken for granted that there was freedom of expression and any rabbi could suggest his ideas without them being vetoed. Sure, he had to show that his arguments were based on a proper halachic argument and profound Talmudic scholarship. But that scholarship included minority opinions, unusual readings of the Talmud, the courage to state that some Talmudic rules no longer applied, and taking into account that the Talmud came into existence in a particular period in history. Later Halacha often veered from the Talmud's rulings, sometimes to the extreme. (To study how far this went and to what extent Halacha has changed over the years since the days of the Talmud, the best sources are Menachem Elon's four-volume work Jewish Law: History, Sources, Principles, JPS, Philadelphia/Jerusalem, 5754/1994 and Louis Jacobs' A Tree of Life: Diversity, Flexibility, and Creativity in Jewish Law, 2nd edition, Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, London/Oregon, 2000)

Every halachic authority should read these and similar works, in order to have a profound understanding of what Halacha is all about and how it developed. (Yes, it developed! It is organic, and that is its vitality!)

Without that knowledge, it is entirely impossible to pasken (decide) Halacha correctly.

Now is neither the time nor the place to discuss the world of "Meta Halacha", which gives much more attention to the ideological, theological, and religious dimensions of the world of Halacha and its application. To study that topic, see Philosophia shel Halacha (Hebrew), edited by Avinoam Rosenak, Machon Van Leer, Jerusalem, 2012; Masa el HaHalacha (Hebrew), edited by Amichai Berholtz, Yediot Acharonot, Jerusalem, 2003; Philosophia shel Halacha (Hebrew), edited by Aviezer Ravitzky and Avinoam Rosenak, Machon Van Leer, Jerusalem, 2008; and HaHalacha haNevu'it (Hebrew), edited by Avinoam Rosenak, Magnes, Jerusalem, 5766.

This open-mindedness was even truer regarding theological matters, where one could express almost any opinion as long as it wouldn't undermine basic Jewish beliefs, which in themselves are very flexible and open to debate. Just think of the fundamental disagreements between Maimonides' philosophical work Guide for the Perplexed and the celebrated Kuzari of Rabbi Yehuda HaLevi (c. 1075-1141). One should also not forget that Maimonides' famous 13 principles of faith, in which he tried to establish dogmas, came under heavy fire and were never accepted as axiomatic. (See Marc B. Shapiro's The Limits of Orthodox Theology: Maimonides' Thirteen Principles Reappraised, Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, Oxford/Oregon, 2004 and Menachem Kellner's Must a Jew Believe Anything?, 2nd edition, Littman Library of Jewish Civilization, 2006.)

Since I view all literature as a commentary on the Torah – because the Torah is the blueprint of the world – all philosophies, whether of Baruch Spinoza, Emmanuel Levinas, Franz Rosenzweig, or Martin Buber, are part of this blueprint and consequently must be able to fit into the great tradition called Judaism. One can bring everything back to Torah, and nothing has to be left out. Sure, it means that we have to think through some of these philosophers' ideas, reformulate them, and expand on them, but ultimately they will find their way back to Torah. Even atheism has religious meaning. (See Alasdair Macintyre & Paul Ricoeur's The Religious Significance of Atheism, Columbia University Press, NY, 1967)

Just take notice of the remarkable observation by the eminent Rabbi Eliezer Ashkenazi (1513-1586) – disciple of both Rabbi Yosef Karo (1488-1575), author of the Shulchan Aruch, and Rabbi Moshe Alshich (1508 - c.1600) – who was a most original Torah commentator. He writes:

Concerning the faith in the (contemporary) human being, it is said in Parashat Nitzavim (Devarim 29:13-14) "And not with you alone do I establish this covenant…but with those who are here with us and with those who are not here with us today." Therefore, each and every one of us, our children and grandchildren, until the conclusion of all the generations who have entered the covenant, are duty-bound to examine the secrets of the Torah and to straighten out our faith concerning it, by accepting the truth from whoever says it … Nor should we be concerned about the logic of others – even if they preceded us – preventing our own individual investigation. Much to the contrary … Just as (our forebears) did not wish to indiscriminately accept the truth from those who preceded them, and that which they did not choose (to accept) they rejected, so it is fitting for us to do … Only on the basis of gathering many different opinions will the truth be tested. Thus, it is valuable to us to complete the views (of our predecessors) and to investigate (the meaning of the Torah) in accordance with our own mind's understanding.

And even if in the course of investigation into the secrets of the Torah through our love for it, we err, it will not be judged against us, even as an unwitting thing, because our intent was for the sake of Heaven. But we shall be guilty if we desist from investigating the secrets of our Torah by declaring: The lions have already established supremacy, so let us accept their words as they are … Rather, it is proper for us to investigate and analyze according to our understanding and to write our interpretations for the good of those who come after us, whether they will agree or not …

You must struggle to scale the heights and to understand our Torah…. and do not be dismayed by the names of the great personalities when you find them in disagreement with your belief; you must investigate and choose, because for this purpose were you created, and wisdom was granted you from Above, and this will benefit you … (Sefer Ma'asei Hashem, Sha'ar Ma'aseh Torah, Parashat Balak, Merkaz HaSefer, Jerusalem, 2005).

Indeed, this sage wisdom is often forgotten in certain religious circles, a phenomenon that has been detrimental to the future of a living Judaism. Yes, there are rules of interpretation and nobody can just disagree with the foundations of Judaism. But within those very flexible parameters, the call to fresh thinking is fundamental in order to guarantee the Torah's eternal message.

Now, however, a good part of the rabbinical establishment has decided that this is no longer the case. One must follow whatever Maimonides and the gedolei hador (great rabbis of our generation), and others say; even when it has nothing to do with Halacha and is purely aggadic or theological.

This is called Da'as Torah, a claim that in non-halachic matters these rabbis have a kind of prophetic insight that makes their philosophies and ideologies infallible and not to be questioned. It is a modern invention and as un-Jewish as can be. It's unclear to me why this idea was suddenly introduced. Some of its critics maintain that it's only to give these rabbis more authority and power. It probably became very popular because it functioned as an escape from thinking on your own, making your own decisions, and taking responsibility. It reminds me of the infallibility of the papacy and the theology of dogma as presented by the Church.

To me, all of this is unacceptable because my reading of authentic Judaism tells me that it's completely untrue. Sure, I believe that there is something called "Torah inspired" and that prominent rabbis can give advice based on their understanding of the Torah. But this can include many opposing ideas; no one can claim that their idea is the only true prophetic one.

This relates to still another factor. As a rabbi, I am constantly being asked to defend the "rabbinical position" on a variety of subjects: Da'as Torah; the position of Israel's Chief Rabbinate on some crucial issues, such as the aguna problem; giyur (conversion); homosexuality; the validity or illegality of a get (bill of divorce); the very need for a get; and more. I am absolutely not prepared to do that, because I vehemently oppose their attitudes on some of these matters, based on halachic sources.

This puts me in an awkward position. First of all, because these rabbis are my colleagues, some of them are even my friends, and I love and respect them. Secondly, I don't want to give the impression that I'm out to undermine their positions and harm them financially. Or that I consider myself to be a greater halachist than they are. I'm not. But I cannot deny that I know many things they don't know in the fields of halachic innovation and Jewish theology, which only few halachists have been educated in.

It reminds me of an observation once made by Chief Rabbi Joseph H. Hertz of England (1872-1946), a powerful and militant figure who was a great scholar but not an outstanding talmid chacham, in the conventional sense of the word. (It was said that he was in favor of resolving disagreements by calm discussion— when all other methods had failed!) He was speaking to his Av Beit Din (the head of his rabbinical court), the powerful Dayan Rabbi Yechezkel Abramsky (1886-1976), who in his earlier days was sentenced to five years hard labor in Siberia, where he composed Talmudic commentaries on translucent cigarette papers. I once read in a book or paper which, to my regret, I can no longer identify that Chief Rabbi Hertz said to Dayan Abramsky: It is no doubt true that you know a lot of Halacha that I do not know. But I know a lot of things (in the world of Jewish theology) that you do not know. And that is right to the point.

To a certain extent, this is my problem as well. No doubt I know much less Halacha than some great poskim do, but my reading of the nature of Halacha is very different. Showing me a source that opposes my halachic view doesn't do much for me, because I know of other views and I know that one can approach such an opinion very differently than some conventional poskim do. That doesn't diminish my respect for them, but I am definitely not prepared to state that I agree with them. I'll explain their views to my students, with integrity, but to say that I agree with them would be dishonest.

I am constantly attacked by rabbis and other people who don't take the time to read carefully what I write and therefore draw erroneous conclusions. Some of these rabbis should know better. They attack me for halachic opinions that they believe are anti-halachic, while in fact I have shown that I rely on renowned halachic authorities whose works and opinions they don't know. They are guilty of selective reading and are not always honest.

Most important is the fact that I agree with Rabbi Yitz Greenberg that, since the Holocaust and the establishment of the State of Israel, we are going through the birth pangs of a third epoch in Jewish history. See "The Third Era of Jewish History: Power and Politics," in Perspectives, National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership, New York, 1981, pp. 45-55. This means that radical changes will take place in the condition and nature of the Jewish people and in Orthodox Judaism and Halacha. While during the last 2,000 years Halacha was "exile-orientated" and "defensive," we are slowly growing out of this.

It will therefore no longer be possible to apply "exile Halacha," and sources that until now were the basis for Halacha will have to be replaced by new Orthodox / Israeli "prophetic" Halacha. The first signs of this are already taking place. See LeNevuchei HaDor by Rabbi Avraham Yitzchak Kook (1865-1935); Dor Revi'i by Rabbi Moshe Shmuel Glasner (1856-1924); Malki BaKodesh by Rabbi Chaim Hirschensohn (1857-1935); and Halacha: Kocha v'Tafkida by Rabbi Eliezer Berkovits (1908-1992). All of these rabbis were outstanding Orthodox halachists of the past. They were grand visionaries who saw times changing and responded with remarkable erudition. And we see similar signs with great, present-day Orthodox halachists, such as Rabbi Professor Daniel Sperber and Rabbi David Bigman. Lately, many articles have been written on this topic. (See, for example, "Welcoming the Jewsraelis" by Alan Rosenbaum, The Jerusalem Post, June 23, 2019.)

I predict that in the next 50 years we'll see a very different Orthodox Judaism appear. See my recent book, Jewish Law as Rebellion: A Plea for Religious Authenticity and Halachic Courage, Urim Publications, Jerusalem/New York, 2018.

I fully understand that I am a threat to my opponents because I stand for these "post-exile" halachic views, while contributing my own as well. It's a difficult position to be in, since there is so much good in ultra- and modern-Orthodoxy that should not get lost. At the same time, we need to let go of some important but dated matters that are now starting to interfere and hurt the future of this new Orthodox Judaism. In fact, it seems that some Modern Orthodox rabbis are moving over to ultra-Orthodox views regarding Halacha and ideology on topics where they should precisely not be going.

I admit that there is one matter that may seriously challenge my and my colleagues' views. It is something I struggle with in my own life: How will this new Orthodox Judaism be able to provide enough inspiration to our young people and ensure that they see their Judaism as the great passion of their lives? I believe that the writings of people like Rabbi Kook and Rabbi Shagar (1949-2007), as well as some others, will be able to help us out and show us the way.

My opponents will have to acquaint themselves with this new literature, halachic thinking and worldview, which they are clearly not aware of. Once they do so, and come with clear reasoning to prove me and my colleagues wrong, I will be the first one to listen to them and declare defeat. So far, none of this has happened. Nor does it seem likely to happen anytime soon.

   Deel dit bericht: Facebook  Facebook

Uw reactie:

vul de beveiligings-code in
jul 2020Faith and Defiance: The Journey of a Religious Rebel A Quest for Authentic Judaism, a Contemplative ...
jul 2020Faith and Defiance: The Spiritual Journey of a Religious Rebel A Contemplative Autobiography
jul 2020Faith and Defiance 2 - The Spiritual of Journey of a Religious Rebel - A Contemplative Autobiography
jul 2020Faith & Defiance: The Journey of a Religious Rebel A Contemplative Autobiography
jul 2020Faith and Defiance The Spiritual Journey of a Religious Rebel A Contemplative Autobiography Prologue, ...
jun 2020Faith and Defiance: The Spiritual Journey of a Religious Rebel A Contemplative Autobiography Prologue, ...
jun 2020The Death and Birth of the Halachic Expert One Should Listen to Bach, Mozart, or Beethoven Before Ruling ...
jun 2020There is no Mashiach Without a Song
jun 2020Some Preliminary Bold Halachic Ideas How to Observe Shabbat, Take the Tram and Go to a Restaurant! (1)
mei 2020Torah from Heaven? What Really Happened? What Does It Mean? Does It Matter?
mei 2020Shavuot Torah: The Confrontation with Ourselves
mei 2020Yom Yerushalayim The City and People of Eternity
mei 2020The Perfect Torah Versus The Evolving Torah, Essay 7 The Evolving Torah and Utopian Halacha
mei 2020The Perfect Torah Versus the Evolving Torah, Essay 6 Halacha, Morality and the Will of God
apr 2020The Perfect Torah Versus the Evolving Torah, Part 5 The Mei HaShiloah on the Relationship Between God ...
apr 2020Pesach: Coronavirus - Where is God?
mrt 2020The Eternal Torah Versus the Living Torah Rabbi Cardozo’s Thoughts on the Mei HaShiloah, Part 4 The ...
mrt 2020Coronavirus: Is It Good?
mrt 2020The Perfect Torah Versus the Evolving Torah Part 3
feb 2020The Ideal Torah Versus the Evolving Torah Thoughts on the Mei Hashiloah and the Halacha Part 2
feb 2020The Ideal Torah Versus the Evolving Torah Thoughts on the Mei Hashiloach and the Halacha Part 1
feb 2020Fundamentalism-Education and The Wisdom of the Gentile
feb 2020Praying, Soulmates, Army Service and the Halachic Chess Game
jan 2020Knowing How to Lose
jan 2020After 75 Years The Shoah Rembrandt and the Quest for Integrity
jan 2020The Talmudic Olympic Games
dec 2019Parashat Vayeshev God’s False Accusation And the Mystery of this World
dec 2019The Value of Religious Doubt
dec 2019Be prepared to be challenged, incensed, inspired Book Review Cardozo on the Parashah: The Book of Genesis
nov 2019Parashat Toledot Old Age, Facelift and the Loss Of Individuality
nov 2019Avraham and the Impossible God: The Challenge of Akeidat Yitzchak
nov 2019The Third Epoch of Jewish History
nov 2019Two More Podcasts
okt 2019Why the Cardozo Academy is in Financial Difficulties
okt 2019The Dangerous “Day After” Yom Kippur and the Joy of Succot
okt 2019Yom Kippur: Who is Able to Eat?
sep 2019The King*
sep 2019Three podcasts from the David Cardozo Academy
sep 2019Is the Torah from Heaven? Letter to a Friend
sep 2019An Introduction to Rosh Hashana Why the Shofar?
aug 2019Parashat Re'eh - The Purpose of Judaism is to Disturb
aug 2019When Times Change, Jewish Education Changes
aug 2019The Sweetening of the Divine Word
aug 2019A Command to Cancel the Commandments Tolerating Heresy
jul 2019Life: The Courage to Say 'Li'
jul 2019The Divine Insanity of Halachic Chess
jul 2019Limmud
jun 2019The Embarrassment and Honor of Being Called a Rabbi, and Third-Epoch Halacha
jun 2019The High Priest, the Pope and I
jun 2019My Struggle with Persuasion and the Truth Concerning other Religions
jun 2019Is the Torah Divine? Thoughts for Shavuot on Combustibility
mei 2019A Vote of Confidence
mei 2019To Madonna
mei 2019On Music Baths And Art As Religious Protest
mei 2019Yom Ha’atzmauth The Eternal Marriage
mei 2019My Chareidi and Modern Orthodox Struggles Question 9, Part Two
apr 2019Bread is an Arrogant Matza
apr 2019Question 9 My Chareidi and Modern Orthodox Struggles Part One
apr 2019The Israeli Elections Radical Otherness
mrt 2019Faith and Freedom The Passover Haggadah of Rabbi Dr. Eliezer Berkovits
mrt 2019Thoughts to Reject Purim
mrt 2019My Hardship with Honest Teaching And Its Privilege
mrt 2019My Controversy with the Mainstream Orthodox Community – Part 2
mrt 2019My Controversy with the Mainstream Orthodox Community – Part 1
feb 2019My Fascination with the Chaotic World of the Talmud Ten Questions for Rabbi Lopes Cardozo
feb 2019The Kotzker, Spinoza and I Ten Questions for Rabbi Cardozo
feb 2019The Sanctity of Shabbat Yes to the Ayalon Bridge, No to the Eurovision Song Contest
feb 2019My Search for and Momentary Loss of God
jan 2019Why I (Refuse to) Pray Ten Questions for Rabbi Cardozo
jan 2019Torah Reaches Beyond the Boundaries of Strict Halacha
dec 2018An interview with Rabbi Cardozo: Taking issue
dec 2018Parashat Miketz The Pain of Being a Tzaddik
nov 2018Parashat Vayeshev Divine Emanations, Chanuka and the Future of the State of Israel
nov 2018Parashat Vayishlach Amalek, Jewish Injustice, Converts and a Warning to the Chief Rabbinate
nov 2018Parashat Vayetze Be Fearful of Religion (1)
nov 2018Parashat Toldot Admitting A Mistake: Even God Does
nov 2018Pittsburgh - In Memory of Its Victims Faith, Death and Frontal Encounter (A Short Insight while on the ...
okt 2018The Curse of Religious Boredom
okt 2018Parashat Noach
okt 2018Introduction to Torah Torah: The Unavoidable and Disturbing Text
sep 2018Simchat Torah: The Unapproachable Text
sep 2018Simchat Torah Technology and the Outdated Torah Scroll
sep 2018Rosh HaShana: Fairy Tales and Humor
aug 2018Rosh HaShanah: What Really Counts
aug 2018The Joy of Saying: I am Sorry The Portuguese Spanish Selichot
aug 2018Parashat Shoftim Surround Yourself with Cleanliness
aug 2018Achieving Unity While Remaining Divided
jul 2018Tish'a B'Av – The Ninth of Av Who Needs the Temple?
jul 2018The Controversy Surrounding My Louis Jacobs Memorial Lecture
jun 2018Scandalous Halachic Decisions Ethiopians and Wine
jun 2018Parashat Chukat The Curse of Religious Coercion
jun 2018Conversion An Open Letter to Israel’s Chief Rabbis
jun 2018Parashat Behaalotecha Theocracy, Democracy, and Halacha *
mei 2018Why a Second Day Yom Tov? The Incomparable Greatness of the Land of Israel
mei 2018Atheism: Belief in the Unbelievable I have tried to be an atheist, but skepticism always got in the way
mei 2018Parshat Bechukotai To Have or to Be, That Is the Question
mei 2018Sefirat HaOmer The Secret to Human and Rabbinical Autonomy
apr 2018The Tragedy and the Challenge A Forgotten Mission
apr 2018Seventy Years of an Unyielding 3,330-Year Marriage Yom Ha'atzmaut
apr 2018Yom HaShoa – Jewish Life or Just Israeli Life? Rabbi Yochanan ben Zakkai or A.B. Yehoshua?
mrt 2018The Great Mystery: Why Karpas?
mrt 2018Plato’s Haggada in the “Dialogues”
mrt 2018An Open Letter to Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman and the Charedi Leadership
mrt 2018Collapsed Halacha and Moshe’s Mask
mrt 2018Megillat Esther and the Nervous-Syndrome Chess Game
feb 2018Conversion and the Birth of Amalek A Warning to the Chief Rabbinate
feb 2018Finding One's Neshome (1) Franz Rosenzweig and the Berliner Shtiebel
feb 2018The Enduring Preciousness of the Secular Jew *
feb 2018The Challenge of Yitro Would Yóu Convert?
jan 2018Parshat BeShalach Jewish Self Delusion
jan 2018Circumcision: Why Risk Your Child's Well-Being? A Call to All Israelis.
jan 2018Moses The Successful Failure
jan 2018Jesus, a Warning to Our Rabbis
dec 2017Halacha Means Full Liberty To Be Secular Would Be Hell: Everything Would Be Forbidden
dec 2017Soul Jews and Halachic Jews
dec 2017Codifying Jewish Law is Not Authentic
dec 2017Jewish Law (Halacha) as Rebellion
nov 2017Be Fearful of Religion Parashat VaYetze
nov 2017The Bet Midrash of Avraham Avinu
nov 2017The Bet Midrash of Avraham Avinu
nov 2017The Bet Midrash of Avraham Avinu Lectures and the Academy
okt 2017The Wonder of Judaism The Bet Midrash of Avraham Avinu
okt 2017Freud’s Subconscious Discovery of God
okt 2017Afterthoughts on Simchat Torah: The Unbending Sefer Torah
okt 2017Sukkot Is a State of Mind Nakedness and a Desert Full of Snakes
okt 2017Afterthoughts on Yom Kippur Ultimate Love and the Danger of Religious Exhaustion*
sep 2017An Open Letter to My Synagogue The Curse of Indifference
sep 2017Embryonic Judaism The Bet Midrash of Avraham Avinu
sep 2017The Bet Midrash of Avraham Avinu Tentative Thoughts Toward a Jewish Religious Renaissance
aug 2017The Turmoil in the USA
aug 2017Jewish Law (Halacha) as Rebellion (2)
aug 2017Jewish Law (Halacha) as Rebellion
jul 2017In Defense of Rabbi Dweck and Orthodox Judaism An Open Letter to Rabbi S. F. Zimmerman, Rav of Gateshead, ...
jun 2017The Waters of Strife The Devastation of Religious Coercion Parshat Chukat
jun 2017A Modern Day Inquisition Rabbi Joseph Dweck The Tragic Story of Rabbinical Small-mindedness
jun 2017Speaking Lashon Hara about the World
jun 2017The Holocaust: Divine Retribution?
mei 2017The Desert and the Wandering Divine Word
mei 2017The Ban on Circumcision Blatant Anti-Semitism and Ignorance
mei 2017Kohanim: The Challenge of Educational Dissent
mei 2017Are We Really Living at the Dawn of the Redemption? Afterthoughts on Yom Ha’atzmaut
apr 2017Boredom and the Immature Elderly
apr 2017Pesach: God’s Sporadic Presence and Overwhelming Absence in Human History
mrt 2017Parshat Vayikra The Trouble with Sacrifices Why Spinoza’s Ethics Were Not Given at Sinai
mrt 2017Johann Sebastian Bach and the Tent of Meeting
mrt 2017An open letter to Rabbi Cardozo in response to his article on Rav Soloveitchik Rabbi J.B. Soloveitchik ...
mrt 2017Purim and the Challenge of the Holocaust
mrt 2017Thoughts to reject For the Early Connoisseur Purim
feb 2017Sinai Now!
feb 2017Parashat Yitro Racism and the Wisdom of a Gentile
feb 2017The Genius and Limitations of Rabbi Joseph Ber Soloveitchik z”l
feb 2017The Chief Rabbinate and Its Disgrace Who Is an Exceptionally Great Sage?
jan 2017The Unknowable, Loving and Aggravating God “I am as I shall be” (*Shemot* 3:14)
jan 2017Rabbinical Tyranny and Freedom of Thought
jan 2017Calling for Religious Unity Only Leads to Division The Need for Personal Conscience
jan 2017Syria and the Scandal of our (Orthodox) Synagogues
dec 2016Divine Emanations, Cause and Effect, and Chanukah
dec 2016God is not a “what,” nor a “when”, and not even a “who” God and the Fires
dec 2016God and The Fires “Because of Our Sins, This Has Befallen Us?”
dec 2016The Purpose of Sefer Bereishit The Abuse of Halacha: Keeping Halacha under Control Part 2
nov 2016The Abuse of Halacha: Keeping Halacha Under Control Part 1
nov 2016Walking Mountains, Shabbat and the Buddha
nov 2016The Curse of Religious Boredom
nov 2016Torah: The Unavoidable and Disturbing Text
okt 2016Torah from Heaven The Deliberately Flawed Divine Torah The Theology of the Halachic Loophole
okt 2016Approaching Tragedy with Joy
okt 2016Yom Kippur: Who is Able to Eat?
sep 2016Do We Dare to Blow the Shofar?
sep 2016Against Indifference Prayer for the World
sep 2016God Does Not Exist So Let Us Serve Him! For Poets, Musicians, Artists and Deep Souls
sep 2016For Poets, Musicians, Artists and Deep Souls The Hopelessness of Dogma and the Beauty of faith
sep 2016Let Us Violate Shabbat So As To Sanctify It The Holy Day and the Tel Aviv Railway
aug 2016Wanted: Rabbis with Knives between Their Teeth The Need for a Genuine Upheaval
aug 2016A Slap in the Face to the Holy One Blessed Be He?
aug 2016Rabbinic Despair and Simple Courage
aug 2016The Chaos Theory of Halacha
jul 2016How the Mighty Have Fallen On Joy and Jealousy
jul 2016Faith is the Joy of Religious Doubt and Uncertainty
jun 2016The Kotel Have We Gone Mad? A Call to All Denominations and Other “Holy” Warriors
jun 2016Israel, the American Elections and the Turmoil in Our World A Parable
jun 2016Shavuot Would You Convert? Like Yitro?
jun 2016Orthodox Rabbi Teaching Halakha Beyond the Shulkhan Arukh, Judaism Beyond the Commandments
mei 2016Parshat Bechukotai The Miracle of Satisfaction
mei 2016Sefirat HaOmer: What Really Counts
mei 2016An Unyielding Marriage of 3500+ Years Yom Ha’atzmauth
mei 2016Yom Hashoa The Quest for Authenticity Rembrandt and the Holocaust
apr 2016Blessed Are Those Who Eat Chametz!
apr 2016Plato’s Advice: Do Not Read The Haggada!
apr 2016The True Art of Sport: Game or Torture?
apr 2016Are You Really Eating Kosher? On Camouflage, Hypocrisy and Hiding behind the Kashrut Laws
mrt 2016The Making of an Enemy The Birth of Amalek
mrt 2016Purim, God’s Hidden Face, and the Advantage of a Permanent Job
mrt 2016The Hazard of Fluency
mrt 2016Rabbinical Courage and the Frozen Text
feb 2016Have Some Pity on the Anti-Semite!
feb 2016Shut Down the Kotel!
feb 2016A Remorseless Judaism
feb 2016Milk and Meat: The Dangerous Mixture
jan 2016Halacha as the Art of Playing Chess Divine Insanity
jan 2016Am I Still Orthodox? Answer to a Jerusalem Rabbi
jan 2016The Desecration of Halacha
jan 2016The Threat of Freedom
dec 2015Amsterdam Spinoza Symposium It Is Time to Lift the Ban
dec 2015Arguing Against Oneself: Joseph’s Self-Revenge
dec 2015Needed: Redemptive Halakha How Halakha Must Transcend Itself
dec 2015Chanukah: Hypocrisy or Authenticity
nov 2015A Prophetic View: The Gentile Aliyah Epidemic
nov 2015Oh, that I Could Take Off My Kippah!
nov 2015Admitting A Mistake: Even God Does
nov 2015 How Old Would You Be If You Did Not Know How Old You Are?
okt 2015The Religious Scandal of Akeidat Yitzchak and the Tragic God
okt 2015Israel: The Blessing of Insecurity
okt 2015God, Where are You? An open letter
okt 2015Simchat Torah: Rush or Stagnation
sep 2015The Trouble with Kal Nidrei We Are All Marranos
sep 2015Rosh Hashana Is Judaism Your Supreme Passion? (1)
sep 2015Courage, Rabbis, Courage! The Need For Mass Conversion
aug 2015Conversion and Annie Fischer’s Interpretation of Schumann’s Klavierkonzert in A Minor
aug 2015Conversion Is Not About Halacha
aug 2015The Immortal Highway
aug 2015Marriage: The Courage to Say ‘Li’
jul 2015Torah: Hearing the Divine Voice at Sinai Now
jul 2015The Temple Is of Little Importance, It Is the Eye of the Needle That Counts
jul 2015The Supreme Court of the United States, Same-Sex Marriage and Other Prohibitions
jul 2015Faith Means Joyful Uncertainty
jun 2015Religion is Dangerous; Plato, Halacha and Dreams
jun 2015The Dangling Bridges of Halacha Making rules where rules should not exist
jun 2015Bold Ideas: Take the Bike or Tram, Get a Free Coffee, and Observe Shabbat! (1)
jun 2015Halacha: The Disturbing Search for God
mei 2015Make Anti-Semitism a Source of Jewish Pride
mei 2015Shavuot, The Wonder and Glow of God’s Word
jul 2014De paradox van ‘Wie is een Jood’
mei 2014Joden, Sisyphus en Sport – (Met enige ironie!)
mei 2014God is aan het verhuizen
apr 2014Seideravond: karpas en de veelkleurige mantel
feb 2014Groots denken omtrent het jodendom
dec 2013The Abuse of Halacha
nov 2013Limmoed en het orthodoxe fiasco