Faith and Practice

“Straight-Welcoming?!” – Creating an Inclusive Community

January 3, 2011

Inclusivity runs both ways: how one LGBT shul became straight-welcoming

Parenthood and Prayer

December 30, 2010

We bring in the New Year with a babe, as the Velveteen Rabbi ponders the meaning of prayer.

The No Rent Rule: What Happened to Jewish Ethics?

December 29, 2010

When I lived in Jerusalem, I felt that I was in the majority, and oppressing a minority. Living in Galilee, I am even more humbled. I feel that I am in a minority oppressing a majority.

The Jewish Medicine Wheel

December 16, 2010

The Jewish holidays are reflections of our internal psychological landscape, following the cycles of the earth. The medicine wheel is a road map to these cycles.

A Diaspora of the Mind: American Jewry and the Secularization of Otherness

December 14, 2010

The largely secularist American Jewish population, which feels neither the covenantal pull of its forefathers, nor the desire to emigrate to the Jewish nation-state, nor the impulse to convert, finds itself in a unique kind of cognitive purgatory.

On Chanukah and Extremism

December 2, 2010

What Adam Sandler doesn’t tell you: the Hasmonean intra-ethnic cleansing campaign that followed the Maccabean miracle of lights.

Reconstructing Yiddishkeit

October 21, 2010

Coming of age in an unprecedented riot of opportunities for self-expression, I gravitated toward the category of what Heeb Magazine founder Jennifer Bleyer calls “dim sum Jews.”

Dedicated Jewish Contemplatives: A Jewish Monastic option?

October 15, 2010

Norman R. Davies is a Dedicated Jewish Contemplative – a Jewish monk. He writes for Zeek on what’s that like, and the possibilities in Judaism for a monastic lifestyle.

History, Memory, and Identity: A Conversation with Laurence Silberstein

October 8, 2010

Laurence Silberstein, author of The Postzionism Debates: Knowledge and Power in Israeli Culture (Routledge, May 1999) discusses the evolving relationship between history and identity among Israelis and American Jews with Valerie Saturen, Editor of Middle East Mirror.

A Father's Death Marks A Chance to Start Anew

September 15, 2010

Jewish mourning customs are designed to ease the grief of the bereaved. But what happens if there is no community? What happens to someone like me, hanging in twenty-something limbo, neither tethered to the family I came from or anchored to the one I’ve yet to create?

Worship for Agnostics: Building a Personal Relationship with a Nonpersonal God

September 13, 2010

How can one believe in God, when all of the descriptions of God tell us more about the imagination and values of the believer than they do about the ineffable? The answer: if you can conceive of God, then what you conceive is not God.

The Hebrew Goddess: Complexity, Unity, Gender, and Society

September 7, 2010

Editor Rabbi Jill Hammer speaks with Jay Michaelson about the new Kohenet Siddur.

Come Home

September 1, 2010

Why should we not expect spirituality, demand it, of our religion? Isn’t that what a religion is supposed to provide?

Why It’s Good for Jews to Meditate: Convergences, Divergences

August 19, 2010

Many Jews meditate, and most meditate in ways developed in the Buddhist tradition. That this is so, is undeniable; why this is so, is a subject for the sociologists. But what does it mean for the practitioner? What are the benefits of meditation for a Jewish spiritual path, and what are the benefits of a Jewish path for serious dharma practice?

Excerpt from The Proper Jewish Mourning for a Queer Ex-Wife

August 11, 2010

In this award-winning essay, Erlichman asks, What is the proper Jewish way to mourn a queer ex-wife?

Come In, Take Your Shoes Off: A New Look at Tisha B'Av

July 14, 2010

Who is it you’re collectively remembering and mourning, each Tisha B’Av? Is it me, or your version of me? And if I’m not truly known, can I be truly mourned?

Earth Based Judaism – Reclaiming Our Roots, Reconnecting to Nature

July 9, 2010

The Jewish tradition provides us with a built-in operating system that connects us to the earth by connecting us to the cycles of nature.

Interview with Andrew Ramer: Sex, Jews, and Queer Midrash

June 26, 2010

Zeek: Do Jews do sex well? Ramer: Sometimes when we say, “we do sex well,” what we mean is that we do sex better than the goyim. That’s anti-Christianism.

The Spirituality of Parenting

June 15, 2010

How parenting is a spiritual practice; plus two poems from Barenblat’s mother cycle

Eicha for the Oil Spill: A Tisha B'Av for the Earth

June 14, 2010

Hearing about and seeing footage of the Gulf Oil spill day after day, my heart is drawn to Tisha B’Av, when we mourn the destruction of the ancient Temples in Jerusalem and chant Lamentations, Eicha.

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