Posts Tagged: health and wellness

60+ Reform Rabbis to Shave Their Heads in Support of Pediatric Cancer Research



During the 125th annual Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR) Convention, more than 60 Reform rabbis will shave their heads to raise awareness of and funding for pediatric cancer research. As the religious leadership of Reform Judaism, the CCAR Rabbis strive for justice and wholeness and health in the world in for all people. At […]

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Knowing When it’s Time: A Response to Rabbi Rosalind Gold



La-kol z’man; v’eit l’khol khefetz takhat ha-shamayim…eit s’fod v’eit r’kod… (To everything there is a season, and a time to every purpose under heaven…a time to mourn and a time to dance…) These words from Ecclesiastes 3, so familiar and widely affirmed to us in liturgy and in song, are nonetheless ignored in the common […]

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A Family in Our Community Needs Your Help



Ethan Kadish is a 13-year-old boy in great need of the Reform Jewish community’s help. On June 29, 2013, the afternoon peace of Shabbat at URJ Goldman Union Camp Institute (GUCI) in Zionsville, IN, was shattered by a lightning strike that left three campers unresponsive on the athletic field. Thanks to the skill, courage, and […]

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Imagining the Possibilities of Belonging



by Shelly Christensen In parashat Bo, “Moses held out his arm toward the sky and thick darkness descended upon all the land of Egypt for three days. People could not see one another. For three days no one could move about; but all the Israelites enjoyed light in their dwellings.” God hardened Pharoah’s heart again […]

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A Path of Wellness: Jewish Mindfulness Meditation



by Cantor Florence Friedman My introduction to Jewish Mindfulness Meditation took place at a five-day retreat sponsored by the Institute for Jewish Spirituality. At that time, I had no idea that this practice would radically change the way I looked at the world and ultimately lead to a healthier me. Although there were many times […]

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“Get the HPV Vaccine,” Says Jewish Ethics



by Rabbi Michael Mellen “I am outraged,” cried Jewish Ethics after reports that some religious figures in the United States suggest girls should not receive the HPV vaccine. “Really, c’mon,” the notable Jewish leader exclaimed, “this is all about preserving life, caring for children, and stopping a killer when you have the opportunity.” “But what […]

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Everything in Moderation…Except Moderation



Finding a middle path that allows us to savor life fully while also cultivating spiritual, emotional, and physical health is central to Jewish tradition. Perhaps the clearest expression of this Jewish approach to finding balance was articulated by the great Jewish thinker and physician Moses Maimonides (1135–1204), who taught that through study and cultivation of […]

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From Darkness to Enlightenment: Learning to Believe in God



by Rabbi Andrew R. Sklarz, MSW It was hours before I would step on the bimah and conduct the Erev Rosh HaShanah service. As the nation was reeling from the cataclysmic events of 9/11, I lay upon the examination table of the cancer ward. Was it just weeks earlier that life was normal? Young, carefree, […]

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What Kosher Eating Can Teach Us About Healthy Eating



by Rabbi Mary L. Zamore Many people mistakenly believe that keeping kosher is linked to healthy eating. Clearly, these people have never experienced highly processed, fat-filled delights like kosher chicken nuggets or Bamba. Yet, throughout history, scholars have tried to rationalize the totality of the laws of kashrut (kosher) by connecting them to health. There […]

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The Jewish Positive Spin



by Rabbi Jonathan Aaron I am a little obsessed with the idea of positive thinking. I have done sermons over the years about not complaining, about speaking nicely to each other (instead of gossiping), and about plain positive thinking. Especially in our era, I believe thinking positively, and expressing joy in life is crucial to […]

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This Year I Ought to…



by Craig Taubman How do we keep the introspection of the High Holy Days going throughout the year? Ironically it might happen if we don’t think too much. Abraham Joshua Heschel said, “A Jew is asked to take a leap of action rather than a leap of thought.” Ours is a religion that asks us […]

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Be a Voice for Reproductive Rights



I’ll never forget Sarah. Sarah was a young woman who sought me out for guidance and support during a very troubling time. She had had sexual intercourse for the first time. Not only was she devastated that afterward the guy revealed that he didn’t really like her as much as she liked him, but also […]

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Is It In Our Genes?



by Dr. Susan Klugman, MD I caught her before her head hit the ground. It was close, though. She was about to get her blood drawn at a college screening for Jewish genetic diseases. She met with the genetic counselor, understood the procedure and was just sitting at a chair as the phlebotomist readied the […]

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Self-Care Is Not Selfish



by Cantor Susan Caro A tale is told of a well-known 17th-century Chasidic rabbi named Zusya, who, when he died, went to stand before the judgment seat of God. As he waited for God to appear, he grew nervous thinking about his life and how little he had done. He began to imagine that God […]

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