The Art of Imagination

Yeshivoth are producing students with a prodigious amount of Jewish knowledge, but are they serving the students and are the Yeshivoth producing real Torah scholars or just walking encyclopedias?

The Curse of Religious Coercion: Parashat Chukat

Moshe's punishment came, counter-intuitively, to prove coercion comes at a cost

Amalek: A Warning to the Chief Rabbinate

“Blot out the memory of Amalek” may quite well mean that we are obligated to uproot from within ourselves the ways in which our ancestors dealt with the ancestors of Amalek.

Circumcision: Why Risk Your Child’s Well-Being? A Call to All Israelis

Spinoza, who left all Jewishness correctly observed, circumcision is the secret to the miracle of Jewish survival. What those Jews who oppose circumcision should never forget is that the attempt to outlaw this rite may not just make Jewish life impossible, but would probably end all Jewish existence

There is No Greater Failure than Not Trying

Rabbi Cardozo's Mission Statement on education and the pursuit of Judaism

Afterthoughts on Yom Ha’atzmaut: The Unchallenged Holiness of the Jew

If the Jewish inhabitants of Israel do not behave properly or hide behind the claim they are observant or moral while in fact they disobey the ethical dictates of God, the Book of Amos makes it clear that the State of Israel will not endure.

The Curse of Religious Boredom

In biblical days, the prophets were astir while the world was sleeping. Today, the world is astir while the synagogues are sleeping. Blessed are the young people who are waking up.

The Purpose of Sefer Bereishit

The foremost point of departure in any halachic decision must be that all people are created in the image of God and that ALL human life is holy.

Parashat Tzav: Spinoza, the Alter Rebbe, and the Eternal Fire

The repeated commandment for the Cohanim to keep the fire burning seems to undermine the purpose of the Heavenly fire: the open manifestation of God’s miraculous providence.

To Have or to Be…that is the Question: Parshat Bechukotai

To learn the secret to a happy life, please read Rabbi Cardozo on parshat Bechukotai.

Scandalous Halachic Decisions: Ethiopians and Wine

Despite a clear ruling by famous Chief Rabbi of Israel Ovadia Yosef z"l that these Ethiopians are surely Jewish (Yabia Omer 8, Even HaEzer 11)— the rabbinical council of the Eida HaHareidit decided that there is doubt about their Jewishness

Kriyat Yam Suf: Jumping Into Deep Waters

Judaism is about new ideas. It is dependent on fresh concepts deeply rooted in its tradition. We must be aware that if we do not apply new remedies we should expect new evils,

Speaking Lashon Hara about the World

The purpose of genuine religious life is to protest against delusion and to teach us to reframe our spiritual spectacles. It is not that religion shows us something new. It shows us what we have seen all our lives but have never noticed.

Thoughts to Ponder: The Kotel – Have We Gone Mad?

The Wall is not a synagogue. It never was a synagogue and should never become one. It is a place where we Jews can meet, pray and share what we have in common instead of focusing on what divides us; where we can smile at each other even when we vehemently disagree.

The Kotel: Have We Gone Mad? A Call to All Denominations and...

My suggestion: Restore the Kotel to its former state, a place where all are welcome and used solely for individual prayer and meditation, just as our ancestors treated it throughout our long history.

Be Fearful of Religion: Parashat Veyetze

Yaakov introduces a great foundation of Halacha: To give a religious moment an ongoing effect it must be translated into the tangible, the mundane. He picks up a rock.

Why a Second Day Yom Tov? The Incomparable Greatness of the Land of Israel

As anyone can testify, celebrating the Jewish festivals in Israel is an act of supreme delight. The festivals are invested with a very special spirit that cannot be experienced anywhere else. No other land can compete with the Land of Israel!

Parashat Shelach: Speaking Lashon Hara about the World

The purpose of genuine religious life is to protest against this optical illusion and to teach us to reframe our spiritual spectacles. It is not that religion shows us something new. It shows us what we have seen all our lives but have never noticed.

Moses – The Successful Failure

What was Moshe's secret that enabled him to continue to fight for his goals, in spite of everything, and succeed where so many others would have failed? The answer is simple: he knew how to lose.

Change of Faith?

Originally, Judaism was highly unorthodox. While it always believed in God and Torah, it never offered any specifics of what God meant or what Torah consisted of.

The Abuse of Halacha: Keeping Halacha Under Control

The book of Bereishit keeps Halacha under control. It restricts and regulates it, and ensures that it will not wreak havoc.

Yom HaShoa – Jewish Life or Just Israeli Life? Rabbi Yochanan ben Zakkai and...

What Rabbi Yochanan taught us is that Jews will survive without Israel, as long as there is Torah, the portable homeland; but Jews will not survive solely because of the existence of Israel—however powerful it may be—if Israel does not incorporate a large percentage of Jewish traditional resources.

Purim and the Challenge of the Holocaust

Jews have been an ever-dying people that never died, experiencing a continuous resurrection, like the dry bones Yechezkel saw in the valley. Purim, like the Jewish nation, will never cease.

Boredom and the Immature Elderly

In the old days, it was a privilege to be mature. It was something people strived for. It meant maturity, well-considered opinions, and experience and knowledge of how to deal with the problems of life. This is no longer the case

Simchat Torah: The Rush and the Stagnation

The possibility of chidushm - looking into the same text with new eyes - is crucial. The call for new interpretations, not just repeating what has been said, is fundamental to genuine Torah learning

Seventy Years of an Unyielding 3,330-Year Marriage

Like the prophets of old, our religious leaders must generate a spiritual revolution, triggering an ethical-religious uproar that shakes the very foundations of the state. Israelis are waiting for such a move, and there is little doubt that their response will be overwhelming. Only then will the Jewish people fully re-engage with its land.

Parshat BeShalach: Jewish Self Delusion

Though rooted back in our servitude in Egypt, to this day, similar attitudes of Jewish self-deception often create the foundations of Jewish self-rejection and self-hate, which become the root of animosity toward anyone who does not join this self-imposed denial of the Jewish cause.

Collapsed Halacha and Moshe’s Mask

Are today’s rulings transformative, or do they promote stagnation? Shall we have prophetic halacha, or collapsed halacha? We have to re-create halacha so that it once again becomes the manifestation of holy deeds that generate marvel and amazement in every part of our lives.

Judaism and the Israeli Classroom: Handicapping our Students

No Israeli parent has the right to give birth to a child in Israel and NOT teach them why they live in Israel, why they are Jewish, why we came back to this land after 2000 years and why we need to defend it.

The Deliberately Flawed Divine Torah: The Theology of the Halachic Loophole

I believe that the Torah is often morally, deeply, and deliberately flawed, and that furthermore, God Himself intentionally made it flawed. It is the latter issue that I will discuss in this essay.

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