Category Archives: Politics

A Haredi Humanist In Jerusalem – Introducing Rav Tukachinsky’s Gesher HaChayim

In the 1940s, whilst the Second World War ravaged Europe, Rabbi Yechiel Michel Tukachinsky (1871-1955) composed what would become an authoritative work on the laws, practices and philosophy of Jewish mourning. He called it Gesher HaChayim, or, The Bridge of … Continue reading

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Rav Yehuda Amital – A Tribute Five Years On

Today is five years since the passing of my teacher and rosh yeshiva Rav Yehuda Amital. Both his personality and his message are so sorely missed. He taught us that ethics and natural morality come before and underpin all other … Continue reading

Posted in Contemporary, Gush, Halakha, Israel, Philosophy, Politics, Shoah / Holocaust, Uncategorized, War and Conflict | Leave a comment

Chag Amalek – The Festival That Wasn’t

To download a pdf of this article click here In Memory of Dan Uzan z”l Is it necessary to recall the similarities between Judaism and Islam (as distinct from Christianity!) in most of the crucial subjects of religion: the book, the … Continue reading

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Achashverosh as Hero of the Megilla

Hopefully the first of several Purim posts, here is one of my favourite Purim shiurim that LSJS have just put up from their Big Bible weekend in 2011. Achashverosh as the unsung hero of the megilla – based on a … Continue reading

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A Tu B’Shvat Midrash

A midrash for Tu B’Shvat that I have wanted to bring to public attention for a while – originally published on Times of Israel. A great source for thinking about how religious traditions provide some of the strongest conceptual underpinnings … Continue reading

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Hanukah and the Jewish State Bill

My piece in this week’s JC on Hanukah and the Jewish state bill. Published a month after I wrote it when it is less news-worthy, with a weird picture, headline, and completely the wrong line made bold – but here it … Continue reading

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Gedalia to Rabin – A Shiur for the 19th Yahrzeit of Yitzchak Rabin

Rabin’s assassination, in November 1995, nineteen years ago, is probably the first event of international significance that I remember. At the time, as a 9 year old in London I understood that something terrible had happened and over the years … Continue reading

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Migdal Bavel for the 21st Century

From a piece written in Hebrew, for Daf Kesher, a few years ago. (Hebrew version below). Can we really build cyber-communities that will replace real communities? I’m very dubious. That’s why I for one won’t be surprised if I wake … Continue reading

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Peoplehood at a time of suffering

Every day I pass by the spot where, last Friday, three teenagers hitchhiking home were kidnapped, and whose whereabouts are still unknown. The trempiada, as it’s called, is only 150 metres from my front door, and so this has been … Continue reading

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The Shoah and Paralysis

A short piece I wrote for Yom HaShoah  a couple of years ago from Cartoon Kippah  The first time it struck me was when I read Night by Elie Wiesel. At first it was a normal reading experience; paragraph by … Continue reading

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