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Editorial & Opinion | Opinion

04/23/2015 | | Opinion

This week, Israel marks 67 years of independence and 67 years of a vibrant relationship with the United States.

04/22/2015 | | Opinion

In Hebrew we refer to a great spiritual giant as a gadol. Too often, especially in the modern era of hagiography, the word is too broadly applied and thereby diluted. However, to those who have encountered a gadol, the definition seems intuitive. Having been privileged with a relationship with a gadol, your life is forever personally inspired, morally challenged and religiously refined. I had the privilege of spending more than 30 years in the presence of a gadol of our generation, Harav Aharon Lichtenstein, who inalterably shaped my life and the lives of tens of thousands of his students across the globe.

04/21/2015 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

For the first time in Israel’s 67 years of existence, the conversation surrounding the Jewish state has changed. Rather than seeing Israel as a place of conflict, young people are now looking at it as a place of opportunity. For their parents’ and grandparents’ generations, Israel was perceived as needy, as a place solely of war, of turmoil, as a place defined by its existential threats. Not since the earliest days of the Zionist movement has there been such incredible positive energy and enthusiasm for Israel as there is now. 

04/21/2015 | | Opinion

Since the passing at the age of 81 of Rabbi Aharon Lichtenstein, or Rav Aharon, as he was known, on April 20, there has been a steady stream of tributes and obituaries. The facts of his life are readily available with a few keystrokes, and his Talmudic prowess is both well-known and nearly impossible to describe to the uninitiated.  Therefore, someone who neither lives in Israel, nor studies Talmud, or who is not Jewish may legitimately ask: Why should I care? What does this Talmudic genius have to do with me?

04/21/2015 | | Special To The Jewish Week | Opinion

As a child of Holocaust survivors, I experienced two dramatically different end-of-life scenarios with my parents. My father’s passing was extremely painful physically, emotionally and spiritually, and while he died 34 years ago, the memories and irreconcilable conditions around his death linger. That was before hospice was readily available in the U.S.

04/21/2015 | | Opinion

“Va-yidom Aharon” – “And Aharon was silent” (Vayikra 10:3).  While these words, read this past Shabbat, describe the biblical Aharon’s reaction to the death of his two sons and remains the consummate response to the mystery of death and tragedy, they take on an additional and somber meaning in mourning the passing of Rav Aharon Lichtenstein, zecher tzaddik li’vracha (may the memory of the righteous be a blessing).