No Results Found.

A Drama in Four Acts
by in
Covenant and Conversation Family Edition on OU Life The parsha of Noach brings to a close the eleven chapters that precede the call to Abraham and the beginning of the special relationship between him and his descendants, and God. During these eleven chapters, the Torah gives prominence to four stories: Adam and Eve, Cain and Abel, Noah and the […]
The Three Stages of Creation
by in
Covenant and Conversation Family Edition on OU Life “And God said, let there be… And there was… and God saw that it was good.” Thus unfolds the most revolutionary as well as the most influential account of creation in the history of the human spirit. In Rashi’s commentary, he quotes Rabbi Isaac who questioned why […]
Emotional Intelligence
by in
In March 2015 I had a public conversation at Yale with the University’s President Peter Salovey. The occasion was quite an emotional one. It celebrated the sixtieth anniversary of the Marshall Scholarships, created by the British parliament as a way of expressing thanks to the United States for the Marshall Plan, that helped Western Europe […]
The Second Mountain
by in
What do you do when you have achieved it all, when you have risen to whatever career heights fate or providence has in store for you? What do you do as age lengthens its shadow, the sun sinks, and the body is no longer as resilient or the mind as sharp as it once was? […]
The World is Waiting for You
by in
Something remarkable happens in this week’s parsha, almost without our noticing it, that changed the very terms of Jewish existence, and has life-changing implications for all of us. Moses renewed the covenant. This may not sound dramatic, but it was. Thus far, in the history of humanity as told by the Torah, God had made three […]
The Story We Tell
by in
The setting: Jerusalem some twenty centuries ago.  The occasion: bringing first fruits to the Temple. Here is the scene as the Mishnah describes it.[1] Throughout Israel, villagers would gather in the nearest of 24 regional centres. There, overnight, they would sleep in the open air. The next morning, the leader would summon the people with […]
Social Capital & Fallen Donkeys
by in
Many years ago, Elaine and I were being driven to the Catskills, a long-time favourite summer getaway for Jews in New York, and our driver told us the following story: One Friday afternoon, he was making his way to join his family in the Catskills for Shabbat when he saw a man wearing a yarmulke, […]
To Lead is to Serve
by in
Our parsha talks about monarchy: “When you enter the land that the Lord your God is giving you, and have taken possession of it and settled in it, and you say, “I will set a king over me, like all the surrounding nations,” set over you a king whom the Lord your God chooses.” (Deut. 17:14-15). So […]
On Not Being a Victim
by in
Making a series of programmes for the BBC on morality in the twenty-first century, I felt I had to travel to Toronto to have a conversation with a man I had not met before, Canadian psychologist Jordan Peterson. Recently he has recently become an iconic intellectual for millions of young people, as well as a […]
Listen, Really Listen
by in
Some 20 or so years ago, with the help from the Ashdown Foundation, I initiated a conference at the Hebrew University, Jerusalem, on the future of Jewish peoplehood. I feared the deepening divisions between secular and ultra-orthodox in Israel, between the various denominations in the Diaspora, and between Israel and the Diaspora themselves. It was […]