Archive for 'Hassidic Theology'

Symbolism of the Breastplate Stones

 

Note: I wrote this back in 1988 and it probably needs a new revision. But for those who find such topics interesting, here it is for your enjoyment.

Q.  What were the types of stones used in Aaron’s breastplate? What were the reasons a particular stone represented a particular tribe?

A. Ibn Ezra in his commentary to Exodus 28, noted that we really have no way to positively identifying the stones that were set ...

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Shirley MacLaine: Aging Without Saging

 Shirley MacLaine is a better actress than she is a philosopher or theologian. Jewish groups are justifiably upset with some comments she penned in her new memoir, “What If… A Lifetime of Questions, Speculations, Reasonable Guesses, and a Few Things I Know For Sure.”

The quote that is generating a lot of criticism suggest, the six million Jews and others who died in the Holocaust were “balancing their karma” by paying for sins in ...

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Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi — A Rebbe to Remember

Reb Zalman 2005.jpg

Reb Zalman Schachter-Shalomi (1924-2014) died on July 3rd this past week. The world has lost of one its greatest and most imaginative modern Rebbes of modern times. In the early sixties, he and Shlomo Carlbach were among the earliest followers of Rabbi Schneersohn and their success set the standard for generations of Chabad shiluchim (emissaries).

My experience with Reb Zalman goes back almost four ...

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Creating an Inner Space for God to Dwell

 

 As Creator, and the Source of our being, God continuously brings our existence out of the abyss of nothingness, and is renewed with the possibility of new life.  God’s love and compassion is bio-centric and embraces the universe in its totality.  God’s power is not all-powerful (in the simplistic sense); nor is it coercive in achieving this end, but is all-relational in His capacity to relate to the world—even suffer with it ...

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Within the Stillness of Being, God Speaks

The Hebrew word for “wilderness” (מִדְבַּר = midbar) coincidentally shares the same consonants word for the term מְדַבֵּר (mĕdĕbēr =  “speaker”). Philo of Alexandria and some of the Hassidic mystics suggest that the wilderness is precisely where God reveals Himself to His people—and not in the cacophonous uproar of the city, where human beings ignore the Voice of God speaking.[1]

Mother Theresa once said, “We need to find God, and he ...

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