Episode 41: Joining The Tribe w/Rabbi Adam Greenwald
“The only thing truly within our power, may be whether or not we will behave in each moment with arrogance or reverence.”
– Rabbi Lawrence Kushner
Rabbi Adam Greenwald is the Director of the Miller Introduction to Judaism Program at American Jewish University, the largest learning program for those exploring conversion to Judaism in North America. He also serves as Lecturer in Rabbinics at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies. In 2014, Rabbi Greenwald was named one of “America’s Most Inspiring Rabbis” by the Jewish Daily Forward. In 2016, Rabbi Greenwald received the Covenant Foundation’s Pomegranate Prize in Jewish Education.
Rabbi Greenwald is the editor of On One Foot, an introduction to Judaism textbook and curriculum, in wide use across the US and Canada. He is a Fellow with the National Center for Learning and Leadership (CLAL)’s “Rabbis Without Borders” initiative and speaks and teaches nationwide on issues of conversion, inclusion, and engagement of Jewish millennials. His writings have also appeared in the Washington Post, and he is a regular contributor to the Ziegler School’s widely distributed “Today’s Torah” and Jewish Values Online.
Prior to coming to the Intro Program, he served as Revson Rabbinic Fellow at IKAR, one of America’s most innovative spiritual communities. He received his BA in History from UCLA and his MA and ordination from the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies in 2011. He is married to Anne Hromadka, an art curator and consultant.Continue reading “Episode 41: Joining The Tribe w/Rabbi Adam Greenwald”
Episode 39: It All Started in the Desert; w/Rabbi Mike Comins
“Ever-lasting life You have implanted with us.”
Rabbi Mike Comins grew up in Los Angeles, graduated from UCLA with a BA in Near Eastern Studies, and served as Rosh Eida at UAHC Camp Swig before making aliyah (moving to Israel) at age 26.
While guiding Jerusalem for American youth and serving as chairperson of Netzer Olami (the International Reform-Zionist Youth Movement), Rabbi Mike studied classical Jewish texts for four years at Machon Pardes, a yeshiva in Jerusalem. In 1996, he was ordained by the Hebrew Union College – Israeli Rabbinical Program.
Rabbi Comins founded TorahTrek Spiritual Wilderness Adventures in 2001 while serving the Jackson Hole Chaverim in Jackson Hole, Wyoming. The community’s first resident rabbi, Rabbi Mike helped the Jackson Jewish community establish itself while developing TorahTrek.
Rabbi Comins returned to Los Angeles in 2004, where he met his wife-to-be, Jody Porter. He continued to grow TorahTrek and turned it into a non-profit (2009).
A Wild Faith: Jewish Ways into Wilderness, Wilderness Ways into Judaism (2007) and his second book, Making Prayer Real: Leading Jewish Spiritual Voices on Why Prayer is Difficult and What to Do about It (2010).
In each, Rabbi Comins developed his “spiritual dynamics” approach to learning and teaching Judaism as a spiritual practice.
Episode 37: The Mystical Joy of Judaism and Love in Sufism w/Netanel Miles-Yépez
“The Ego is driving the car when you are not paying attention.”
Netanel Miles-Yépez is a teacher of religion and Pir of the Inayati-Maimuni lineage of Sufism, co-founded with his teacher, Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, fusing the Sufi and Hasidic principles of spirituality and practice espoused by Rabbi Avraham Maimuni in 13th-century Egypt with the teachings of the Ba’al Shem Tov and Hazrat Inayat Khan.
Episode 32: Islam, Feminism, and Interfaith Dialogue w/Dr. Celene Ibrahim
“Those who look for seashells will find seashells; those who open them will find pearls.”
Dr. Celene Ibrahim is an accomplished scholar, chaplain, and consultant. She has been published in numerous media outlets from The New York Times to BBC Persian. Her recently published book is One Nation, Indivisible: Seeking Liberty and Justice from the Pulpit to the Streets, an anthology of inter-religious voices on the transformative power of ecumenism in America. Her current book project examines female figures in the Qur’an (forthcoming in 2020 from Oxford University Press).
Dr. Ibrahim is a public voice on issues of religious pluralism and civic engagement. She teaches religious studies and philosophy on the faculty of Groton School and served as the Muslim Chaplain at Tufts University. Previously, she held a joint faculty appointment as Islamic Studies Scholar-in-Residence at Hebrew College and Andover Newton Theological School where she co-directed the Center for Inter-Religious and Communal Leadership Education (CIRCLE).
Episode 31: A Godly Bible Filled with Errors? w/Zev Farber
“A foolish consistency is the hobgoblin of little minds.”
— Ralph Waldo Emerson on the notion that a great person does not have to think consistently from one day to the next. This remark comes from the essay “Self-Reliance”.
Zev Farber writes, teaches and edits for a living. He holds an M.A. from Hebrew University (Jewish History), a Ph.D. from Emory University (Jewish Studies/Hebrew Bible), and ordination (yoreh yoreh) and advanced ordination (yadin yadin) from Yeshivat Chovevei Torah (YCT) Rabbinical School. He currently holds a fellowship at Project TABS and writes/edits for their website, TheTorah.com. He is a founding member of the International Rabbinic Fellowship (IRF), blogs actively at Morethodoxy, and answers questions for Jewish Values Online. He lives in Zikhron Yaakov with his wife, Channie, and their six children.Continue reading “Episode 31: A Godly Bible Filled with Errors? w/Zev Farber”
Episode 26: Shavuot Special – The Gift of Receiving Stories w/Rav Mike Feuer
The founder of hasidism, the Baal Shem Tov, “teaches that exile flows from forgetting, while memory is the key to redemption…”
–Rav Mike Feuer
Rav Mike Feuer is a teacher at the Pardes Institute for Jewish studies. He teaches “Striving for the Divine”, “Rav Kook”, and “Jewish History”. He has learned Torah in a number of Jerusalem area institutions, including Yeshivat HaMivtar, the Mir Yeshiva and Sulam Yaakov, where he studied for smikha (rabbinic ordination) and served as Educational Director. Rav Mike’s teaching is a mix of rigorous analysis and a passionate love of the poetry found in Torah.
Episode 20: Two Part Series on Mussar – Deep and Real Communal Change w/Rabbi Marcia Plumb
Rabbi Marcia Plumb is the Rabbi of Congregation Mishkan Tefila in Brookline, Massachusetts. She was the Rabbi for London’s Akiva School and the Southgate and District Reform Synagogue. For 15 years, she was the Director of Spiritual Formation at Leo Baeck, the rabbinic seminary in London. She has also served as the Rabbi at the North London Progressive Synagogue, and Congregation Beth Shalom in Connecticut. Hoping to lead others on a path towards spiritual enlightenment, she founded Neshama: For Spiritual Wellbeing, a center for spiritual reflection, meditation and the study of Mussar literature. Rabbi Plumb was ordained at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, New York. She holds a Masters in Hebrew Literature from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Los Angeles and a B.A. in Psychology from the University of Texas.Continue reading “Episode 20: Two Part Series on Mussar – Deep and Real Communal Change w/Rabbi Marcia Plumb”