Shalom Rav Blog

How the Bible Became the Bible Lecture 6 10 20 2016

Posted on October 30, 2016

Most people think of the Bible as single book but it is in fact a library of many books. This lecture series will follow the history of the Bible from the modern translations of today back in time to the most ancient sources that began to become the Bible. These sources will include the Dead Continue Reading »

Created in the Image of God Humanity and Divinity in an Age of EnvironmentalismConservative Judaism, Vol. 44 No. 1 1991

Posted on October 28, 2016

This was my first major article on Judaism and the environment. It has been reprinted in several books: Judaism and Environmental Ethics: A Reader, edited by Martin D. Yaffe, Lexington Books, Lantham, Maryland, 2001. Environmental Ethics: Divergence and Convergence, Third Edition, by Susan J. Armstrong and Richard G. Botzler, 2004. Religion and the Environment: Critical Concepts Continue Reading »

To the Mountain: A Rationale for the Mitzvot, Conservative Judaism, Vol. 41(3), Spring 1989

Posted on October 27, 2016

This article incorporated material that I first learned with Rabbi Dr. Yochanan Muffs (June 3, 1932 – December 6, 2009) at the Jewish Theological Seminary. I was looking to find a rationale for the mitzvot that saw them as a means to an end and not an end in themselves. I utilized the literal conceits Continue Reading »

STUDY MATERIAL FOR FIRST DAY SUKKOT 2016

Posted on October 27, 2016

This material looks at the Haftarah for the first day of Sukkot, which is taken from the book of the prophet Zechariah chapter 14. The material looks at the idea of the “Day of the Lord” and how the rivers of Eden will be recreated in the messianic era flowing from the Temple Mount in Continue Reading »

The Love of God and the Anthropic Principle Conservative Judaism, Vol. 40(2), Winter 1987/1988

Posted on October 26, 2016

This article was my next foray into the Science/Religion dialogue. It looks at the theological implications of the Anthropic Principle, a scientific theory that was first coined around 1981. It postulates that the existence of conscious observers (i.e. human beings) at this particular time in the history of the universe is not a random event Continue Reading »

The Definition of Evil in Post-Holocaust Theology, Conservative Judaism, Vol. 39(1), Fall 1986

Posted on October 26, 2016

This article arose out of a conference on the Holocaust and the “second generation” that took place in Ottawa, Canada in the middle 1980’s. I created a presentation on religious responses to the Holocaust which became this article. My work on religious responses to the Holocaust dates back to my first year as a rabbi Continue Reading »

How the Bible Became the Bible Lecture 5 10-13-2016

Posted on October 26, 2016

Most people think of the Bible as single book but it is in fact a library of many books. This lecture series will follow the history of the Bible from the modern translations of today back in time to the most ancient sources that began to become the Bible. These sources will include the Dead Continue Reading »

“Asymmetry, Negative Entropy and the Problem of Evil,” Judaism, 34:4, Fall, 1985

Posted on October 21, 2016

This was my first published article on the Science/Religion relationship. I was attempting to deal with the problem of evil by utilizing some new theories on chaos and disorder. The title is a bit of problem (the journal wanted to change it) but don’t let that scare you off. I probably would write a very Continue Reading »

Kayla’s Prayer, Conservative Judaism 37.4 1984

Posted on October 19, 2016

This article contains a final confession or vidui that I wrote with a women who was dying of cancer during my first years in the rabbinate. The article contains in introduction about the genesis of the prayer, the prayer, and a line by line commentary. 1272-kaylas-prayer

STUDY MATERIAL FOR PARSHAT HA’AZINU (Deuteronomy 32:1-52) 5777

Posted on October 19, 2016

This week’s parasha is traditionally the last parasha that is read in the year at Shabbat morning services. Except for the last aliyah, it consists of a poem that was referred to in last week’s parasha. This poem was, according to Deuteronomy, written by Moses at God’s behest in order to warn the people of Continue Reading »