Balak: Great Source

The Torah: A Women’s Commentary includes a “Contemporary Reflection” with each weekly portion. Sue Levi Elwell’s essay on Balak offers a challenge “to move beyond the narrow, dichotomous thinking that blinded Balak and Balaam in this portion” (pp.956-957):

Are we ready to open our tents and our hearts to those who wish to dream — and then to build sacred communities that not only tolerate diversity and difference but also celebrate them?

In this spirit, Be’chol Lashon/In Every Tongue, advocates for “the growth and the diversity of the Jewish people.”

UPDATE 2019:
Older, now defunct, resources removed. Newer materials here:

Jews of Color Field Building Initiative resources;
Keshet LGBTQ-inclusive resources;
JConnect disability inclusion resources;
Reform Movement’s Audacious Hospitality program.

The “Opening the Book” series was originally presented in cooperation with the independent, cross-community Jewish Study Center and with Kol Isha, an open group that for many years pursued spirituality from a woman’s perspective at Temple Micah (Reform). “A Song Every Day” is an independent blog, however, and all views, mistakes, etc. are the author’s.

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Virginia hosts "Conversations Toward Repair" on We Act Radio, manages, blogs on general stuff a and more Jewish topics at and

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