No Results Found.

Why Did Isaac Love Esau?
by in
Even before they were born, Jacob and Esau struggled in the womb. They were destined, it seems, to be eternal adversaries. Not only were they were different in character and appearance. They also held different places in their parents’ affections: The boys grew up, and Esau became a skilful hunter, a man of the open […]
A Journey of a Thousand Miles
by in
Our parsha contains the most serene description of old age and dying anywhere in the Torah: “Then Abraham breathed his last and died at a good old age, an old man and full of years; and he was gathered to his people” (Gen. 25:8). There is an earlier verse, no less moving: “Abraham was old, […]
The Miracle of a Child
by in
There is a mystery at the heart of Jewish existence, engraved into the first syllables of our recorded time. The first words of God to Abraham were: “Go out from your land, your birthplace, and your father’s house . . . And I will make you a great nation . . .” In the next […]
On Being a Jewish Parent
by in
The most influential man who ever lived does not appear on any list I have seen of the hundred most influential men who ever lived. He ruled no empire, commanded no army, engaged in no spectacular acts of heroism on the battlefield, performed no miracles, proclaimed no prophecy, led no vast throng of followers, and […]
Individual and Collective Responsibility
by in
I once had the opportunity to ask the Catholic writer Paul Johnson what had struck him most about Judaism during the long period he spent researching it for his masterly A History of the Jews? He replied in roughly these words: “There have been, in the course of history, societies that emphasised the individual – like […]
The Faith of God
by in
There is a deep question at the heart of Jewish faith, and it is very rarely asked. As the Torah opens we see God creating the universe day by day, bringing order out of chaos, life out of inanimate matter, flora and fauna in all their wondrous diversity. At each stage God sees what He […]
The Spirituality of Song
by in
With Ha’azinu we climb to one of the peaks of Jewish spirituality. For a month Moses had taught the people. He had told them their history and destiny, and the laws that would make theirs a unique society of people bound in covenant with one another and with God. He renewed the covenant and then handed the […]
To Renew Our Days
by in
The moment had come. Moses was about to die. He had seen his sister Miriam and brother Aaron pre-decease him. He had prayed to God – not to live forever, not even to live longer, but simply, “Let me go over and see the good land beyond the Jordan,” (Deut. 3:25). Let me complete the journey. […]
Not in Heaven
by in
  When I was a student at university in the late 1960s – the era of student protests, psychedelic drugs, and the Beatles meditating with the Maharishi Mahesh Yogi – a story went the rounds. An American Jewish woman in her sixties travelled to north India to see a celebrated guru. There were huge crowds […]
We Are What We Remember
by in
One reason religion has survived in the modern world despite four centuries of secularisation is that it answers the three questions every reflective human being will ask at some time in his or her life: Who am I? Why am I here? How then shall I live? These cannot be answered by the four great […]