I Am Jewish: Personal Reflections Inspired by the Last Words of Daniel Pearl

I Am Jewish: Personal Reflections Inspired by the Last Words of Daniel Pearl


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Being Jewish. What does it mean—today—and for the future? Listen in as Jews of all backgrounds reflect, argue, and imagine.

When Wall Street Journal reporter Daniel Pearl was brutally murdered in Pakistan, many Jews were particularly touched by his last words affirming his Jewish identity. Many were moved to reflect on or analyze their feelings toward their lives as Jews.

The saying “two Jews, three opinions” well reflects the Jewish community’s broad range of views on any topic. I Am Jewish captures this richness of interpretation and inspires Jewish people of all backgrounds to reflect upon and take pride in their identity.

Contributions, ranging from major essays to a paragraph or a sentence, come from adults as well as young people in the form of personal feelings, statements of theology, life stories, and historical reflections. Despite the diversity, common denominators shine through clearly and distinctly.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9781580231831
Publisher: Turner Publishing Company
Publication date: 01/01/2004
Pages: 296
Product dimensions: 6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.72(d)

About the Author

Sylvia Boorstein is cofounding teacher at Spirit Rock Meditation Center in Woodacre, California, and a senior teacher at the Insight Meditation Society in Barre, Massachusetts. She lectures nationally on Buddhism and mindfulness, and teaches Vipassana and Metta meditation.

Alan M. Dershowitz is the Felix Frankfurter Professor of Law at Harvard Law School and author of many books.

A world-renowned philosopher and social activist, Dr. David Hartman (z"l) is the founder and president emeritus of the Shalom Hartman Institute in Jerusalem. Named after his late father, the Institute is dedicated to developing a new understanding of classical Judaism that provides moral and spiritual direction for Judaism's confrontation with modernity.

Presently professor emeritus at Hebrew University in Jerusalem, he received his rabbinic ordination from Yeshiva University's theological seminary in New York City. He is the author of many award-winning books, including A Living Covenant: The Innovative Spirit in Traditional Judaism (Jewish Lights) and Maimonides: Torah and Philosophic Quest, both winners of the National Jewish Book Award; A Heart of Many Rooms: Celebrating the Many Voices within Judaism (Jewish Lights), finalist for the National Jewish Book Award and a Publishers Weekly "Best Book of the Year"; and Love and Terror in the God Encounter: The Theological Legacy of Rabbi Joseph B. Soloveitchik (Jewish Lights).

Harold S. Kushner is rabbi laureate of Temple Israel of Natick in
Natick, Massachusetts.

Rabbi Lawrence Kushner is one of the most widely read authors by people of all faiths on Jewish spiritual life. He is the best-selling author of such books as Invisible Lines of Connection: Sacred Stories of the Ordinary; God Was in This Place & I, i Did Not Know: Finding Self, Spirituality and Ultimate Meaning; Honey from the Rock: An Introduction to Jewish Mysticism; The Book of Letters: A Mystical Hebrew Alphabet; The Book of Miracles: A Young Person's Guide to Jewish Spiritual Awareness; The Book of Words: Talking Spiritual Life, Living Spiritual Talk; Eyes Remade for Wonder: A Lawrence Kushner Reader; I'm God, You're Not: Observations on Organized Religion and other Disguises of the Ego; Jewish Spirituality: A Brief Introduction for Christians; The River of Light: Jewish Mystical Awareness; The Way Into Jewish Mystical Tradition; and co-author of Because Nothing Looks Like God; How Does God Make Things Happen?; Where Is God?; What Does God Look Like?; and In God's Hands. He is the Emanu-El Scholar at San Francisco's Congregation Emanu-El and an adjunct professor of Jewish mysticism and spirituality at Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion.

Rabbi Lawrence Kushner is available to speak on the following topics:

• Jewish Mystical Imagination

• Rymanover’s Silent Aleph: What Really Happened on Sinai

• Zohar on Romance and Revelation

• What Makes Kabbalah Kabbalah

• Sacred Stories of the Ordinary: When God Makes a Surprise Appearance in Everyday Life

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Ruth W. Messinger is the president of American Jewish World Service. She contributed to We Have Sinned: Sin and Confession in Judaism—Ashamnu and Al Chet, Who by Fire, Who by Water—Un'taneh Tokef and All These Vows—Kol Nidre (both Jewish Lights).

Rabbi Sandy Eisenberg Sasso, a parent, spiritual leader, and storyteller, is the awardwinning author of God's Paintbrush, In God's Name, God In Between and many other inspiring books for children of all faiths and backgrounds. The second woman to be ordained as a rabbi (1974) and the first rabbi to become a mother, she and her husband, Dennis, were the first rabbinical couple to jointly lead a congregation—Beth-El Zedeck in Indianapolis. They have two children, David and Debora, and three grandchildren. Sasso, who holds a doctorate in ministry, is active in the interfaith community, and has written and lectured on the renewal of spirituality and the discovery of the religious imagination in children of all faiths.
Rabbi Sandy Eisenberg Sasso is available to speak on the following topics:

  • Nurturing the Spiritual Imagination of Children
  • Tell Me a Story: Reading the Bible and the Religious Imagination of Children
  • Filling in the Blanks: How Women Read the Bible
  • Women and Judaism: A Personal Journey
  • Midrash as a Tool for Spiritual Reflection

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Rabbi Zalman M. Schachter-Shalomi, the inspiration of the Jewish Renewal movement, is widely recognized as one of the most important Jewish spiritual teachers of our time. Professor emeritus at Temple University, he has contributed to Jewish Mysticism and the Spiritual Life: Classical Texts, Contemporary Reflections, and is the author of Jewish with Feeling: A Guide to Meaningful Jewish Practice, Davening: A Guide to Meaningful Jewish Prayer, winner of the National Jewish Book Award; First Steps to a New Jewish Spirit: Reb Zalman's Guide to Recapturing the Intimacy & Ecstasy in Your Relationship with God, (all Jewish Lights); From Age-ing to Sage-ing; and Wrapped in a Holy Flame, among other books.

Rabbi Harold M. Schulweis, one of the most respected spiritual leaders and teachers of his generation, has been a rabbi at Valley Beth Shalom in Encino, California, for close to forty years. He is the founding chairman of the Jewish Foundation for the Righteous, an organization that identifies and offers grants to those non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews threatened by the agents of Nazi savagery. He is also the founder of Jewish World Watch, which aims to raise moral consciousness within the Jewish community. Synagogues and other religious institutions are now supporting this effort across the country.

Rabbi Schulweis is the author of many books, including: Conscience: The Duty to Obey and the Duty to Disobey (Jewish Lights), Approaches to the Philosophy of Religion, For Those Who Can't Believe, Finding Each Other in Judaism, In God's Mirror, and two books of original religious poetry and meditation—From Birth to Immortality and Passages in Poetry. His Evil and the Morality of God is regarded as a classic.

Table of Contents

Publisher's Note xv Preface xvii PART I: IDENTITY PART II: HERITAGE HERITAGE Shimon Peres 45 Cynthia Ozick 49 Ruth Pearl 50 Larry King 51 Sarah Rosenbaum 54 W. Michael Blumenthal 54 Tamara Pearl 55 Spencer Newman 56 Sylvia Boorstein 57 David J. Azrieli 60 Martin Peretz 60 Rabbi Sherwin T. Wine 63 Jade Ransohoff 65 Wendy Wasserstein 65 Avraham Burg 3 Ruth R. Wisse 7 Joshua Malina 10 Irwin Cotler 10 Lawrence H. Summers 13 Rabbi Zalman M. Schachter- Shalomi 14 The Right Honourable The Lord Woolf 18 Angela Warnick Buchdahl 19 A. B. Yehoshua 20 Michael Chlenov 23 Daniel Schorr 23 Stefanie Stoler 28 Maureen Lipman 28 Mike Wallace 30 Natan Sharansky 31 Norman Lear 34 David Horovitz 34 Kitty Dukakis 36 Jamie Sistino 37 Thomas L. Friedman 37 Bernice Rubens 40 Leon Botstein 41 CONTENTS viii PART III: COVENANT, CHOSENNESS, AND FAITH Senator Joe Lieberman 107 Robyn J. Friedman 108 Dr. David Hartman 109 Eric H. Yoffie 114 Sarah Levin 117 Alan Dershowitz 117 Rabbi Lawrence Kushner 120 Felicia Lilien 121 Arno Penzias 122 Rabbi Patricia Karlin-Neumann 124 Shia LaBeouf 126 Sandy Eisenberg Sasso 127 Amos Oz 131 Samantha Schram 132 Rabbi Israel Meir Lau 132 Leon Wieseltier 134 Naomi Ragen 136 Gershom Sizomu 137 Michael H. Steinhardt 139 Dennis Prager 140 Kirk Douglas 142 Dr. Richard A. Lerner 143 Julius Lester 144 Sarah Silverman 66 Moshe Katsav 67 Amanda 70 Lord Greville Janner 70 Alana Frey 73 Itay 75 Richard Dreyfuss 75 Roald Hoffmann 76 Vidal Sassoon 77 Ida Haendel 78 Daniel Libeskind 79 Jackie Mason 80 Maurice Lévy 81 Rabbi Rachel B. Cowan 82 Milton Friedman 84 Liz Lerman 84 Daniel Gill 85 David Suissa 86 Yefim Bronfman 87 Shelley R. Deutch Tayar 87 Douglas Rushkoff 90 Gloria Goldreich 91 Daniel Jonah Goldhagen 92 Ephraim Kishon 93 Menachem Z. Rosensaft 94 Robert Rabinovitch 96 Naim Dangoor 97 Kerri Strug 98 Sir Martin Gilbert 99 Deborah E. Lipstadt 100 Bernard Lewis 102 CONTENTS ix PART IV: HUMANITY AND ETHNICITY PART V: TIKKUN OLAM (REPAIRING THE WORLD) AND JUSTICE Ruth Bader Ginsburg 201 Jonathan Freedland 202 Stephen H. Hoffman 204 Gary Shteyngart 205 Lynn Schusterman 206 Rabbi Jacqueline Tabick 209 David Colburn 210 Judy Feld Carr 212 Robin Kramer 213 Richard N. Goldman 215 Tullia Zevi 216 Peter Yarrow 217 Francine Klagsbrun 221 Hanoch Greenberg 222 Sjalom Awraham Soetendorp 223 Alan Colmes 225 Ruth W. Messinger 225 Rosalie Silberman Abella 227 Elie Wiesel 169 Samuel G. Freedman 170 Jonathan Sacks 173 Matt Putney 175 Michelle Pearl 176 Rabbi Harold M. Schulweis 177 Ehud Barak 181 Bernard-Henri Lévy 182 David Grossman 185 Tovah Feldshuh 186 Nadine Gordimer 187 Theodore Bikel 188 Judea Pearl 190 Eran Rotshenker 192 Rabbi Chaim Seidler-Feller 192 Anne Roiphe 194 Dr. Uri D. Herscher 195 Alexander Militarev 197 Chaim Kramer 145 Josef Joffe 146 Rabbi Uri Regev 148 Thane Rosenbaum 152 Richard Siegel 153 Michael Medved 155 Jim Ball 156 Rabbi Kenneth J. Leinwand 157 Norman Lamm 158 Larry S. Moses 161 Rabbi Tony Bayfield 162 Harold Kushner 164 Acknowledgments 243 Glossary 245 Index of Contributors 247 Credits 251 Reader’s Discussion Guide 261

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