Map Your Heart Out, part 1

“Pursuing Racial Justice: The Jewish Underpinnings of Anti-Racism Work,” held recently at Adas Israel (DC) and featuring Yavilah McCoy of Visions-Inc and Rabbi Jason Kimelman-Block of Bend the Arc, offered many insights and challenges. I plan to share some of what I gained in readable portions over the course of the next few days. I […]

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Facing Race. We’ve Seen This

The “Facing Race” conference concludes on November 12. For those reading early in the day, there’s still time to participate via LiveStream. For those checking in later, there’s useful information at this conference link. Calls for Jewish Signatures “To the millions of immigrants, Muslims, people of color, LGBT people, women, people with disabilities, and everyone […]

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Life, Liberty, and the Promise of Peace

Readers may have noticed a long silence on this blog. But I have not been entirely silent. At start of June 2015, I began an additional blog, #SayThisName, to mark those lost to homicide and police action in the District of Columbia. Since then, I have personally typed out and said aloud the names of […]

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Prayers, Advocacy, and #RippleEffect

Continuing the discussion, at “If a corpse be found…”, about the need for new approaches to meeting our communal responsibilities. Some possible responses to the trauma and tragedy of multiple murders, particularly in Washington, DC — Prayer Residents in some of the most affected neighborhoods of the District are asking for prayers, calling on everyone […]

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Seek the Peace of the City

Houses of worship across the United States are separated by many things: culture, religious denomination, style of prayer, theology and language. We’re also separated by demographics and location, even in the same town. I believe it was DC’s former police chief Isaac Fulwood who noted that 10 a.m. on Sunday is the most segregated hour […]

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Empathy: Withdrawing Ego (Beyond 28)

“withdrawing the ego to make room for another” A key element in cross-racial, and every other kind of, understanding is the focus of this week’s omer journey. “Hod” [literally: “glory”] is understood as representing empathy in the system of thought that relates an attribute/energy of God with each week of the omer. For example, The […]

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Stumbling Blocks Before Us All (Beyond 24)

“Do not put a stumbling-block before the blind.” This commandment prohibits anything that “gives the means, or prepares the way for wrong,” according to Rabbi Samson Raphael Hirsch (see Carmi Wisemon’s essay at My Jewish Learning). There are so many ways in which language can “give the means, or prepare the way for wrong.” And […]

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Prayers on the Makeshift (Beyond 23)

In his masterpiece of prose poetry, Chicago: City on the Make, Nelson Algren wrote: …All the creeds that persecution harassed out of Europe find sanctuary on this [Chicago] ground, where no racial prejudice is permitted to stand up. We insist that it go at a fast crawl, the long way around. The Negro is not […]

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