I was not planning on attending my grandfather’s memorial service. My paternal grandparents live in California. I live in Wisconsin. The service was scheduled in between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, a busy time for a Hillel professional. A trip west wasn’t really in the cards. But, Grandma made the decision: she wanted everyone there. And so I went to California in September.
Our friends over at SoulPancake invited people to help plant a garden of gratitude, to really think about who and what they're thankful for. Here's what happened:
We're thrilled to partner with the Jewish Book Council and to feature authors from the JBC network on our blog and in our campus programming.
In his latest book, Healing the Heart of Democracy: The Courage to Create a Politics Worthy of the Human Spirit, educator and author Parker Palmer talks about the ways in which our feelings of dividendess, and sense of integrity, can impact the ways in which we represent others, and the ways in which we choose our own representatives. In the video below, he begins to delve into some of those questio
I spent the last eight months vying for arguably one of the most important elected representative positions in the country. It is an experience best described as the longest job interview ever. I understood what that position was, I understood what I would represent if elected. More importantly I understood who I would represent. The mayor of Toronto represents everyone who lives in Toronto, it is a clear group of people.
I still remember the way I felt in the lead up to that election in the fall of 1988. The stakes couldn’t have been higher. After eight years of the Reagan White House, I was ready for change. I wanted my voice and my values represented at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue and I was going to make that known by casting my ballot...in the 3rd grade mock election. While Michael Dukakis lost the mock election and eventually the actual election for president that year, the civics lesson was not lost on me.
We're thrilled to partner with the Jewish Book Council. Each month, we will feature a different JBC author on our blog, and s/he will participate in Big Question conversations and other programming on campus as well.
Recently, my town’s Selectmen gave a small-time developer the go-ahead to build a very large gas station on a pristine piece of land.
“When’s the last time you had a meaningful conversation?” was the question I was asked upon arriving at a workshop for the relatively-new campus initiative, Ask Big Questions (ABQ).
More often than not we go out with friends, launch into a new relationship, or jump ship from one job to another without a clear understanding of why we’re doing what we’re doing. We never pause and develop a conscious intention and, as a result, things tend to get messy down the road.
Whenever I teach about ritual or work with people to prepare for a life cycle transition, I always stress that what makes a ritual powerful and effective is the preparation and intention with which we approach the event. While there is a certain “magic” to liminal moments, we cannot simply show up and experience a transformation. The same is true for how we experience the holidays of the Jewish year. Not only must we appropriately prepare for each holiday, but also we must consider how we want to connect this year.