"There is a crack in everything / That's how the light gets in." - Leonard Cohen z"l
"There is hope for your future." - Jeremiah 31:17
What a week. Tomorrow, in my introduction to the Torah Reading, I'll share a short reflection on how this week can be held well by the Parsha. For now, I'm glad to share with you all a manifestation of hope in which I'm glad to have participated during this last week, a collaborative musical collection entitled "There is Hope." (click the link to download the album!)
My dear friend Rabbi David Paskin and I launched a project called "There is Hope" with the intention of curating a free digital album of music dedicated to hope and healing in uncertain times.
The artists who responded with generosity and passion include: Marsha Attie, Stacy Beyer, Joanie Calem, Neshama Carlebach, Jennie Chabon, Steve Dropkin, Maya Elise, Adam Feder, Josh Goldberg, Sue Horowitz, Billy Kaplan, Larry Karol, Naomi Less, Chava Mirel, Dan Nichols, Pizmon Jewish A Cappella, Juval Porat, Rick Recht, Chana Rothman, Melita Silberstein, Julie Silver, Peri Smilow, and Craig Taubman.
The musicians featured in this collection have given of their souls to heal, to help, to bring light to others. We all offer these songs, the soundtracks of our own soul's, to anyone in need of reassurance and comfort in these uncertain times. There is an immense need for hope, now more than ever, as hatred seems to gain momentum with each passing news item. But, as the prophet Jeremiah, who witnessed destruction and violence in his lifetime, taught us: there is always hope. We affirm, through our music, through our very souls: There is hope.
Our collective blessing to every listener, to you:
May you sing and dance, act and love,
expanding the cracks in your heart to let ever more light in.
I had a beautiful day today. I stood with my sister, a passionate rabbi serving the U.S. Navy as a chaplain, at the World War II Memorial in Washington D.C. We remembered our grandfather of blessed memory, who fought for America and shared hard-earned wisdom with his children and grandchildren.
I looked to my right and saw the Washington Monument. Looked to my left at the Lincoln Memorial. I read quotes engraved on massive stones. And I felt, to my core, one sad feeling: too much war.
Too. Much. War.
The quotes and certain retellings of history would have me believe that we fought for pure purposes: we fought for religious freedom, we fought to end slavery, we fought for freedom for all humanity, we fought to end tyranny. But it's also true that we fought (and fight) for economic interests. It&…