“Rashi’s Judaism” is certainly warm and comforting. But it is also disappointing to people who accept modern science as a route to truth, who reject superstition, who believe that all human beings are actually created in the image of God. “Rashi’s Judaism” is challenging for people who accept the values of liberal democracy.
The Jewish Press has a bi-weekly feature in which questions are asked to a panel of rabbis. One of the respondents is Rabbi Marc D. Angel, and here are his responses to recent questions in this series.
The Covid crisis demonstrated how society rallied massive energy and budget to bolster society’s physical health. Shouldn’t we be able to act with an equal sense of emergency on behalf of society’s moral and psychological health?
The Omer period is an appropriate time to remind ourselves of the importance of each day. We can make each day count by devoting proper time to our loved ones, to our friends and neighbors, to those activities that strengthen ourselves and our society. Don't wait for tomorrow or next week or next year. Life must be lived and renewed each day.
This "Eulogy at Wounded Knee" by Rabbi Marc Angel reflects on the tragedies in society that stem from dehumanization. Hatred flourishes when we stop seeing each other as fellow human beings. Dehumanization inevitably leads to violence. Can we stop this process of erosion in our society today?
Israel’s success has once again proven an inspiration to all who those who dare to dream. The Abraham Accords demonstrates the possibility of working together with our neighbors and achieving a once unthinkable mutual exchange of “peace for peace”.
Our Institute has an unwavering commitment to the Torah tradition and to the Jewish people. We promote a vision of Orthodox Judaism that is intellectually sound, spiritually compelling, and emotionally satisfying. Appreciating the amazing diversity within Orthodoxy, the Institute encourages responsible discussion of issues in Jewish law, philosophy, religious world-view, and communal policy. It sees Judaism as a world religion with a profound message for Jews, and for non-Jews as well. It seeks to apply the ancient wisdom of Judaism to the challenges of contemporary society.
Why is there such a stark contrast between the way these Sephardic and Ashkenazic chief rabbis speak about Israeli-Arabs and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict? I believe that Sephardic piskei halakha should not be viewed in a vacuum: rather, they are reflective of a Sephardic approach to halakha throughout history, and are also influenced by the treatment and role of Sephardim in Israel.
Great teachers impact mightily on the development of their students. Great teachers not only impart knowledge but provide the intellectual tools that enable students to learn for themselves and to think for themselves. Rabbi Marc Angel reminisces on some of the most influential teachers in his life.
Pesah: Insights from the Past, Present, and Future (The Habura, 2022)
Rabbi Hayyim Angel