Category Archives: Current Issue

Rupturing Silence

December 27, 2014

The rupture of silence has changed the way I look at the world, how I understand the meaning of raising children and deciding to live in Israel, and how I understand the value of peace. The war disrupted a silence that had to be broken.  More »

Silence: The Language of the Soul

December 27, 2014

“The deepest language of the soul is silence.” — Rabbi Rami Shapiro When I was young, my father, Alexander Berner, z”l, would sometimes close his eyes and sit in silence. If I interrupted his reverie, he would say, “Shhh…sweetheart, I am visiting with myself.” My father was neither a trained meditator nor “religious,” but he More »

Silence and Rupture

December 27, 2014

“Morality binds and blinds. It binds us into ideological teams that fight each other as though the fate of the world depended on our side winning each battle. It blinds us to the fact that each team is composed of good people who have something important to say.”   — Jonathan Haidt, The Righteous Mind: Why More »

Hearing the Planet Speak

December 27, 2014

I was born in New York and raised in a number of cities and suburbs on the East Coast. My idea of being in the country was either Central Park or summer camp, both of which required artificial lights after sunset. Silence, which I define as the absence of sounds created by human beings, was More »

The Power of Pause

December 27, 2014

Many of us don’t know how to hit “Pause.” We think we are too essential to be away for an extended period of time, or that our institutions can’t afford our absences, or we’ve surmised that a sabbatical goes against the grain of our workplace culture — especially in the 24/7 world we live in. More »

Gratitude for the Siren’s Wail

December 27, 2014

I realized recently that I feel bizarrely grateful for the rockets fired on Jerusalem last summer. I know this is crazy. The war completely disrupted our lives. I lay awake night after night, terrified that a siren would sound and I would have to race to carry three limp, heavy, sleeping children downstairs to the More »

The Place of Non-Place

December 27, 2014

There is only one really serious philosophical problem, and that is suicide. Deciding whether or not life is worth living is to answer the fundamental question in philosophy. All other questions follow from it. — Albert Camus, The Myth of Sisyphus So they elevated Jonah, casting him into the sea; only then did the sea More »

Stop Now! ‘Shmita’ and Climate Change

December 27, 2014

Imagine that you’re a wealthy landowner in ancient Israel. You know the shmita (sabbatical) year is coming and what’s required: You must stop planting and let your land lie fallow for the year. You must forego a year of profit. Not only that: Over the past few years, you have lent money to your poor More »