Category Archives: Changing Notions of Torah

Reading the New Testament

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May 1, 2012

Marc Zvi Brettler & Amy-Jill Levine All Jews should read the New Testament. As paradoxical as it sounds, it will make us better Jews, just as the study of the New Testament — which we did in preparation for our book — has made us better Jews. We make this claim not out of naiveté More »

Show Me Your Glory

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May 1, 2012

Sara N. S. Meirowitz The subject was Parashat Kedoshim, the Levitical holiness code, and I was attending my local egalitarian minyan, listening to a lay leader speak about the Torah reading. He was addressing the sensitive topic of the prohibition against male-male sexual relations, sharing a personal story about a gay friend’s coming out. “As More »

Black on White

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May 1, 2012

Silvio Wolf Photography and Torah are based upon an exegetic practice. Photography bases its investigation on physical data — what is “seen.” But the perceivable appearance of what is seen, what is real, is also the first level of a deep complexity and the root of myriad visual interpretations. Through the contrast of dark and More »

An Accessible God — With Me Always

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May 1, 2012

Aliza Lavie At Mattan Torah, the Giving of the Torah, God says to Moses, “Thus shalt thou say to the house of Jacob, and tell the children of Israel.” (Exodus 19:3) Rashi comments on this verse, saying that the house of Jacob represents the women and the children of Israel are the men. From this, More »

Unplanned Detours

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May 1, 2012

Elan Babchuck The first time I was ever asked to be the hagbah (ritual lifter of the Torah scroll) was at the age of 13. While I had the status of Jewish adult, my body hadn’t yet caught up. Never­theless, when called upon, I marched with great purpose up to the bimah, grabbed the wooden More »

The Ten Commandments

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May 1, 2012

Tzemah Yoreh I believe in the vital importance of the Ten Commandments, both to the fabric of my life and to Western Civilization, yet I am agnostic with regard to the Jewish God, and do not accept scripture as divinely ordained. How does this work for me? The Bible is often understood, within religious circles More »

May 2012 Art Show: New Notions of Torah

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May 1, 2012

In this month’s online art exhibition, four diverse artists explore what “new notions of Torah” means to them.  R. Justin Stewart examines how the idea of the messiah has been interpreted, reinterpreted, and misinterpreted throughout the ages in his interactive installation, “Distorting (A Messiah Project, 13C).”  Maarten van der Heijden uses manipulated photos of World More »

In Motion and Stillness

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May 1, 2012

Lee Moore It begins with notions of scattering and ends with a re-collecting. The drama encircling the Torah service demands our physical attentiveness, launching us forward with a rousing command: “Get up!” The command is found in Numbers 10:35, where the ritual method of calling forth and carrying the ark though the wilderness is given. More »

The Search Engine and the Mirror

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May 1, 2012

Andrew Silow-Carroll “Hey, you’re Jewish? Have I got something for you!” The ads that pop up as I cruise around the web don’t exactly say that, but they might as well. Thanks to the wonders of website tracking, advertisers and “data brokers” are able to track my IP address as I move from site to More »