Author: Avi Shafran

We’re Not Kidnappers

A piece I wrote for a Forward blog, in reaction to a mother’s lament over her newly-Orthodox daughter’s described rejection of her parents can be read here.

Exodus Exegesis

Some interesting thoughts about Yetzias Mitzrayim that have been bouncing around in my head for a number of years can be read here.

Private Matters

It comes as something of a revelation to many to confront the Rambam’s treatment of kiddush Hashem, or “sanctification of Hashem’s name” for the first time. One definition of the concept in Hilchos Yesodei...

Greed Is Gross

The carnival of carnage that seems a constant in the Islamic world proceeded tragically apace last week, with a suicide bombing at a gathering in Ibb, Yemen to commemorate Islam’s founder’s birthday. At least...

Bricks for Bombs

A driver, reportedly shouting an Islamic slogan, rammed a vehicle into pedestrians in the French city of Dijon last Sunday, injuring twelve people. Understandably, the attack (and several subsequent ones in France) brought back...

Letter in NYT Book Review

A slightly edited version of the letter below appears in the current New York Times Book Review: Editor: In reviewing “Living the Secular Life,” Susan Jacoby misunderstands the argument of those who maintain that...

Leaf Bag Lesson

An aroma all but absent these days but deeply evocative of childhood to many of us who grew up before pollution laws is the bouquet of burning leaves. Back in the day, we would...

Candles and Candor

A non-Orthodox writer recently reached out to ask if I would participate in a panel discussion about Chanukah. The other panelists would be non-Orthodox clergy. While I cherish every opportunity to interact with Jews...

Punditry With Prudence

“According to you,” a reader wrote me privately about a recent column that appeared in this space, “we can’t make any conclusions, because of the unknowns.” The column, titled “Unknown Unknowns,” pointed out how,...

A Halachic Query of Jordanian King Abdulla II

Dear King Abdullah, I’m quite sure you don’t remember me. I was part of a sizable group of Jewish leaders, clergy, politicians and organizational representatives whom you, along with the Center for World Religions,...

Pin It on Pinterest