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“What’s Your Question?”  Join Us This Friday Evening at 7:00 p.m. 

02/21/2024 11:07:55 AM

Feb21

Dear Haverim,

 

The author Arnold Glasow reflected Judaism’s view of wisdom when he wrote:  “It’s easier to see both sides of a question than the answer.”  Wouldn’t it be wonderful if we all did that!

 

Too often, we jump to a conclusion too quickly or our “confirmation bias” leads us to an answer not based on an objective perspective, but on our already fixed assumptions.

 

Judaism offers us questions more than answers, equally valid majority and minority opinions, and an openness to new discoveries based on logical thinking.

 

The journey is more important than the destination in Jewish thought, and the destination is always changing.  But those who know how to frame and ask questions and how to listen to a variety of answers will acquire something greater than knowledge, and that is wisdom!

 

So, please join us for Shabbat services this Friday evening at 7:00 p.m.  There were still a lot of questions at the end of our last “Ask The Rabbi” a few months ago, so bring those still unanswered questions back and ask new ones, too.

 

We can talk about anything in Judaism – Jewish history and philosophy, Zionism, debates, present day Israeli politics and the tragic Israel-Hamas War.  (Chapter 3 of the Biblical Book of Ecclesiastes tells us that there is “a time for war and a time for peace,” but figuring out when enough is enough and how to bring the hostages home safely is a terribly difficult question with several elusive answers.)

 

Even the question of what Reconstructionism stands for today has changed over the decades, with certain beliefs sometimes polarizing the movement. 

 

Just as Reform, Conservative and Orthodox Judaism have changed over the last century and more, our movement has ongoing discussions over the importance of humanistic thinking, the centrality of Jewish peoplehood and what 21st century Zionism should look like.  (I’m more of a classical Kaplanian Reconstructionist,  so as the saying goes: “If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it!”)

 

As Albert Einstein once wrote:

 

“If I had an hour to solve a problem and my life depended on the solution,

I would spend the first 55 minutes determining the proper question to ask…

for once I know the proper question, I could solve the problem in less than

5 minutes.”

 

So, please be with us this Shabbat for beautiful music, seeing old friends and meeting new ones and gaining lots of wisdom through great questions. (Click here to RSVP to attend in person.)

 

Shavua Tov/Have a week of great questions,

 

 

Rabbi Arnie Rachlis

Wed, April 24 2024 16 Nisan 5784