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Jun 4, 2021, 3:19 AM
President-elect Herzog and a time for hope
In a world full of conflict and discord, in which the very idea of representative democracy is struggling to survive an overwhelming onslaught of hostility from every quarter, it seems almost anachronistic to imagine that any election could ever...
Sep 30, 2020, 7:35 AM
You can visit sukkot on ever continent
Exactly a year ago, I traveled to Israel for a meeting with more than thirty Jewish leaders and activists, at the invitation of Israel’s President, Reuven Rivlin. The agenda of our two-day mini-conference was to discuss a problem that...
Nov 27, 2017, 7:05 AM
The late Meta Skulsky — gone but not forgotten.
This past Sunday evening, I received a phone call from a friend to ask whether I could conduct the funeral of a distant relative the following day. There would be very few mourners present at the funeral, he said, as the...
Sep 28, 2017, 11:43 PM
Yom Kippur — It’s not just another day
Imagine you had never heard of Yom Kippur before, and you are now informed about the existence of a day called Yom Kippur. Suddenly you discover that on this day of the year we are given a unique opportunity...
Sep 20, 2017, 2:08 AM
Who was testing whom at the Akeda?
The story of the Akeda, read on the second day of Rosh Hashana, is neither very long, nor very detailed, but it ranks as one of the most controversial narratives in the Torah. While one could certainly examine it...
May 23, 2017, 2:02 AM
After fifty years, it’s time for us to say “it all belongs to us!”
Jews are obliged to lay claim to the location on which their Temple will be rebuilt
May 2, 2017, 3:56 AM
The Hasidic Rebbe who just died can inspire every one of us
Earlier today (Monday, 5 Iyar), at the age of 94, the last surviving great-great-great-grandson of the illustrious nineteenth-century Hasidic master, Rabbi Yisrael of Ruzhyn (1796-1850), the unassuming "Pashkan Rebbe", Rabbi Yisrael Shalom Yosef Friedman Ben-Shalom, died in Gilo, Jerusalem....
Apr 24, 2017, 6:14 AM
How Ani Ma’amin Survived the Shoah
Azriel David Fastag was a Modzitzer hasid known for his beautiful voice, a chazzan and composer of Hasidic tunes before World War Two. Although the Modzitzer Rebbe had managed to escape Poland before the Holocaust, arriving in New York...
May 26, 2015, 12:00 PM
Chief Rabbi Lau, beware — rabbinic coercian is against the halacha
I saw a worrying news article last week. It was buried between reports of biker violence in Texas and David Letterman’s final appearances on late night television. Apparently, Israel’s Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi, David Lau, suggested that Israel’s government should...
Apr 3, 2015, 11:00 AM
Slavery & Freedom are alive and well in 2015
In anticipation of Pesach this year, I resolved to explore the concepts of slavery and freedom. Personally, I have always struggled to find contemporary models to help me experience both slavery and freedom during the ‘Jewish origins and identity...
Rabbi Pini Dunner is the Senior Rabbi at Beverly Hills Synagogue, a member of the Young Israel family of synagogues. He lives with his family in Beverly Hills, California.