Picture of Rabbi Daniel Greyber

Rabbi Daniel Greyber

Two-way street: Israel should learn about Diaspora, too

Rabbi Daniel Gordis, a senior fellow at the Shalem Center in Jerusalem, caused a storm within the Jewish community a few weeks ago when he published a piece arguing that the connection by students at America’s liberal rabbinical schools — the future leaders of the Jewish communities of the Diaspora — toward Israel was weakening.

Rains and Revolutions

When it rains in the Middle East, it’s a pain – I got soaked walking to Mandel this morning – but everybody is happy about it because we need rain. One of the special things about the land of Israel is the fragile, quite direct connection between rainfall and the health of the land. Rain is seen as a divine blessing:

Parashat Behar-Bechukotai (Leviticus 25:1-27:34)

During the rabbinic debate over the Oven of Akhnai, Rabbi Eliezer and the rabbis disagree about the purity of an oven (Baba Metzia 58b-59a). Rabbi Eliezer is convinced he is right and, during the argument, miracles prove he is correct: a carob tree moves, a stream flows backward, the walls of the beit midrash tremble, and even a Bat Kol — a voice from heaven — cries out against the rabbis: “Why do you dispute with Rabbi Eliezer? In all matters, the halachah agrees with him.”

Parashat Toldot (Genesis 25:19-28:9)

During my first summer at Camp Ramah it became necessary to dismiss a camper. We sat on my porch together, and he started to shake and cry after I broke the news to him. He buried his face in his hands.

Waking Up to Life

It is 38 degrees on a Monday night. Our family wakes up in a tent cabin in the high country of Tuolumne Meadows, ready for the beauty, and warmth, of the Yosemite Valley, where we have reservations Tuesday, Wednesday and Thursday night. But a wildfire has different ideas.

Sacrifices and a Sliding Scale

My wife met a pastor’s wife on a plane. Every few months now, we have Darren, an evangelical pastor, and his wife, Amy, over to our Shabbat lunch table.

Showing Up

How am I a man of faith? There are things I cannot believe, times when I cannot say with certainty that life, or even God, is good. But I return to God, sometimes in anger and depression, sometimes just tired, but I return and I pray.

To let go and to pray

Parshat Lech Lecha (Genesis 12:1-17:27) Lech Lecha begins with God telling Abraham, \”Go forth from your land, from your birthplace, from the house of your father to the land that I will show you.\”

Poetry and Taxis

Parshat Vayeilech (Deuteronomy 31:1-31:30) Didn\’t we just finish Pesach? How is Rosh Hashanah already here again? Another year has slipped away.

Taking time for yourself

Parshat Re\’eh (Deuteronomy 11:26-16:17) The parsha begins: \”See [re\’eh, singular] I place before you [lifnei\’chem, plural] today blessing and curse\”. Why begin in the singular and finish in the plural?


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