Author: Avi Shafran

23

Man or Beast

It is hardly surprising that one of the most outspoken evangelists of atheism would have less-than-kind words about a man who empowered religion in American politics. But writer Christopher Hitchens went even beyond his...

8

Reclaiming Aleinu

Whether to precarious geopolitical situations or challenges posed by personal adversity, the authentic Jewish response is to seek spiritual merits. Such virtues might come in the form of more heartfelt prayers, more determined Torah-study,...

25

Of Slopes and Hopes

“Oh, come on!” the e-mail read, “What’s a few dead children on the altar of my liberal slippery-slope paranoia?” Gruesome as the imagery was, I had to smile. The message was intended as a...

11

A Closing Response to Jonathan Schorsch

I sent the letter below to the Jerusalem Post last week. I don’t know if it was published or not, but thought I would share it with Cross-Currents’ readers. Editor: It was surprising –...

14

Chosen

In the April issue of Commentary, a scholar dared to raise one of the few remaining issues still considered impolite these days for public discussion: Jewish intelligence. In an essay entitled “Jewish Genius,” political...

13

Let My Scientists Go

Back on April 13, in the spirit, perhaps, of the Passover then just past, The New York Times editorialized about the need to “free” something from the “chains imposed” upon it. The sentence’s subject...

35

Amen to Ahavat Yisrael

In a Jerusalem Post opinion piece, Dr. Jonathan Schorsch calls me a “clever fellow” whose “handwringing” over the hatred I’ve encountered aimed at Orthodox Jews is “somewhat posed, if not disingenuous.” Dr. Schorsch can...

5

Jewish Influence

It isn’t likely that very many people exhaled at long last with relief at the news that three entertainment industry executives had compiled their pet list of “America’s 50 most influential rabbis.” But there...

The Magnificence in the Mundane

With the approach of spring, the synagogue Torah-reading segued from accounts of the seminal events of Jewish peoplehood, the exodus from Egypt and the revelation at Sinai – to a series of social laws,...

13

Squid Pro Quo

The half-ton squid caught in waters south of New Zealand in February – 33 feet long and weighing 1089 pounds – isn’t kosher, but it can still serve as food for Jewish thought. Such...

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