My latest sermon given at Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies

Freedom, prosperity and their redeeming power.

Thoughts on parashat Vaera.

I was born in Poland, in a country where many fundamental human freedoms were taken away for 45 years by autocrats who believed that the historical progress of humanity gave them knowledge and awareness of the ultimate causes of all injustices in the human world. This awareness was supposed Continue Reading

How do we measure true success?

Thoughts on parashat Miketz. 

We live in the age of the individual. We are all supposed to be slim, pretty, successful, prosperous, happy, extroverted and popular. The perfect self – that’s the goal our culture constantly encourages us to achieve and we see this everywhere: in advertising, in the press, all Continue Reading

Exposing lies and deception

Thoughts on parashat Vayeshev. 

There is a big idea that is embedded in the Hebrew Bible that truthful speech (used by God) has a creative power and lies at the foundations of the world. Firstly, God uses truthful speech (God said, “Let there be…” or “Let us make…”) to transform tohu-va-vohu Continue Reading

Judaism and pronatalism

Thoughts on parashat Vayera. 

A lot of our political and cultural debate today pertains to societal norms. However, I believe that, in our times, there is a common confusion about the nature and purpose of societal norms. Therefore, I need to make some statements that sound quite obvious for many of us: the societal Continue Reading

God’s faith in humanity.

Thoughts on parashat Lech Lecha.

Have faith in humanity! – some people say. Humanity is the cancer of planet earth – say some others. Obviously the people from the second group don’t literally mean that when they say it, it’s just hyperbolic, right? Anyway, without a little faith in humanity Continue Reading

The climate change that caused the flood

Thoughts on parashat Noach.

The story contained in our Torah portion for this week can be seen as a metaphor of a great catastrophe in which species were decimated or doomed to total extinction… Only a few of them were to survive, a few individuals of each gender, in order to reproduce and prevent the animal life Continue Reading

Prayer as a decision making tool

Thoughts on parashat Nitzavim.

Prayer. Why do we pray? When do we pray? What do we expect from prayer? What’s the meaning or function of prayer today? What are the good things that come from the experience of prayer?

These are all important questions for religious people and have many answers. But before trying to Continue Reading

Politics and truth

Thoughts on parashat Shoftim. 

You shall appoint magistrates and officials for your tribes, in all the settlements that your God יהוה is giving you, and they shall govern the people with due justice. (Deuteronomy 16:18, the first verse of parashat Shoftim)

There are three classical theories of truth that also define Continue Reading

Faith as a remedy against the obsession of control

Thoughts on Parashat Va’etchanan. 

What are mitzvot/commandments? The word commandment has many synonyms, such as command, recommendation, indication, regulation, guideline, order, norm, imperative, rule, instruction, directive… Using these synonyms, we can say that commandments are certain directives that Continue Reading