Category Archives: China, Israel and Judaism

The Struggle with China: Jews, Israel, and the International Community

Rabbi Dr. Shmuly Yanklowitz
January 8, 2014

“Globalization divides as much as it unites…What appears as globalization for some means localization for others; signaling a new freedom for some, upon many others it descends as an uninvited and cruel fate.” -Zygmunt Bauman (Globalization: The Human Consequences, p. 2, 1998) There was a time when Jews, locked in ghettoes, were forced to only More »


Caught in the Middle?

Alexis Pinsky
January 2, 2014

Each day in our liturgy, we remember that God took us out of Mitzrayim. While Mitzrayim is the name given to Egypt, there is a belief that the word is derived from m’tzarim meaning from narrowness or from tightness. When we pray, we remember how good freedom from restriction and constriction is. In this month’s More »


Fear Less

Naomi Less
December 31, 2013

Today’s journey – follow these instructions: 1. Before you read on – take a listen to this track clip – (the whole track is at the end). Take a second to get this into your consciousness. (Translation: The whole world is a narrow bridge and the key is not to be afraid. Written by Reb More »


Tribe, Homeland and Diaspora

Rabbi Alon C Ferency
December 30, 2013

Recently, the Chinese Communist Party’s third plenum of the 18th Central Committee stoked the speculation of China-watchers.  “Will this third plenum turn out to transform China as Deng Xiaoping’s did in 1978?”  Veiled and opaque statements emanating from President Xi Jinping at the session give cause for optimism about the future of China’s economy and More »


Between East and West

Yoni A. Dahlen
December 26, 2013

With the pressing forward of the technological revolution, the world as we know it, whether in the scope of business, politics, or culture continues to shrink.  While this global connectivity has been a great success in the marketplace, it has been a disaster to the European political philosophy of nationalism.  The creation of the EU, More »


Jewish in Beijing

Rabbi Dan Horwitz
December 24, 2013

I had the privilege this past May of serving as the Rabbi-in-residence for Kehillat Beijing – Beijing’s progressive Jewish community. Overwhelmingly comprised of Americans who are pursuing business ventures in China, I found the community to be incredibly warm and welcoming.  Inevitably, when transported to a new situation, folks tend to extend warmth, as they’re More »


The Strangely Rabbinic Story of Zhu Xi

Rabbi Scott Perlo
December 23, 2013

בס”ד Dear Reader, Herein lies the strangely Rabbinic tale of Zhu Xi, revered commentator of the Analects of Confucius. I was teaching our introductory students about parshanut (Rabbinic commentary), which is a singularly difficult task. One spends a lot of time explaining, in rather uncertain terms, just why taking every word out of context is More »


A Jew Abroad in China

December 19, 2013

In 2005, as Beijing was busying itself for the Olympic Games, I had the opportunity to study abroad in China. There I found a living, conflicted culture I’d only read and dreamed about, a mesh of old and new. Do not be fooled: the Middle Kingdom is a world deep and vast, and can only More »


Hoping for a reunion in Shanghai

Lauren Henderson
December 16, 2013

In late October, a news segment aired about a Chinese family who has been holding onto 2,000 books for the past 70 years that belonged to a Jewish family who fled to Shanghai during the Shoah.*  Even though the district decided that it was time to renovate the neighborhood where the books were stored, the More »