Author Archives: Jhos Singer



Jhos Singer

hearts that are moved
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hearts that are moved

Shabbat Shalom, Chaverim— This week’s Torah portion, Terumah (Exodus 25:1-27:19) contains one of Judaism’s most consistent and widespread practices. It is something that every branch and leaf of organizational Judaism shares, evolves, and tries to...

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February 16, 2018
When God meets us halfway
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When God meets us halfway

Shabbat Shalom Chaverim, One of the less savory fixations in Jewish culture is the notion that there is an “authentic” Jewish life, practice, or knowledge. The dominant attitude has been that anyone wearing a black...

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February 01, 2018
chochmat halev
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Mature justice

Shabbat Shalom Chaverim— When I was a child I lived in an apartment on the Venice Beach Boardwalk. I was part of a semi-feral bevy of beach-rat kids. We were mostly boys, all about the...

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January 19, 2018
chochmat halev
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The friction between Spirit and Religion

Shabbat Shalom, Chaverim— There are two conflicting rabbinic concepts that pit the authority of the earliest generations against the wisdom of the most recent. The first, Yeridat Ha-dorot, means the descending of the generations. Basically,...

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January 12, 2018
I will be that which I will be
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I will be that which I will be

Shabbat Shalom Chaverim— This week’s parasha, Shemot (Exodus 1:1-6:1) is so rich it feels like a holdover of the holiday meals I enjoyed since I last wrote. Being faced with abundance is both satisfying and...

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January 04, 2018
chochmat halev Hanukkah
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The miracle of the ordinary

Shabbat Shalom Chaverim— Last Tuesday night, a great miracle happened in Alabama. But it was no miracle. It was the natural consequence of a group of ordinary people who exercised their civic duty, got out and...

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December 14, 2017
berkeley jewish chochmat halev
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Seeing with the eye of kinship

Shabbat Shalom, Chaverim— I’m back in the cool and misty Bay after a few weeks in the overheated Middle East. Folks here seem a bit chilly, withdrawn, and insular, unlike the Holy Landers who tend...

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November 10, 2017
Unraveling our difficult story
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Unraveling our difficult story

Shabbat Shalom Chaverim— For the last 10 days I’ve been wrestling, wondering, and wandering with an extraordinary group of Jewish and Christian clergy in Israel.  At the Shalom Hartman Institute we’ve learned with and from...

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November 03, 2017
chochmat halev renewal judaism
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Trust in your own unfolding

This week’s Maggid’s Musing is sent to us from Israel, where Maggid Jhos is participating in the JCRC/Shalom Hartman Institute’s Christian-Jewish Leadership Project. Shabbat Shalom Chaverim— It’s 6:00 a.m. in Jerusalem. When I awoke, I...

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October 27, 2017
I'm spiritual, not religious
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I’m spiritual, not religious

Shabbat Shalom Chaverim— Very often I hear folks say, “I’m spiritual, but not religious.”  (To be precise “religion” derives from the Latin religare meaning ‘to bind’, and by definition religiosity includes binding beliefs, practices and obligations. The...

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September 15, 2017
Investigate-drash-interpret
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Investigate-drash-interpret

Shabbat Shalom Chaverim— This week’s Torah portion, Ki Tetze (Deut. 21:10-25:19) is chock full with social rules and edicts that range from compassionate and noble to downright nasty and cruel. On the one hand we...

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August 30, 2017
Be Peaceful
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Be Peaceful

Shabbat Shalom, Chaverim— In 1995 I participated in the International Interfaith Pilgrimage for Peace and Life, in commemoration of the end of World War II.  The Pilgrimage started with a 10-day convocation in Oswiecim, Poland....

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August 25, 2017
Question authority?
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Question authority?

Shabbat Shalom, Chaverim— Our son, Michael, and I went to the “Summer of Love” exhibit at the De Young Museum in San Francisco today. After a few hours of staring at Stanley Mouse and Alton...

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August 11, 2017