JACOB, ESAU AND THANKSGIVING

For Jews, Yom Kippur—the Day of Atonement—is two months past. But Thanksgiving is days off, and all Americans might bear in mind a story from Torah that suggests we pay attention to atonement daily. Jacob, the younger twin of Isaac and Rebecca, purchases his brother Esau’s birthright for a bowl of lentil stew. Deduct points…

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CANCELING THE HEBREW BIBLE

I suspect that if Joe Biden wins the presidential election, a hue and cry will arise from the far left that will impact everything from the monuments in Washington D.C. to the Hebrew Bible. The seeds have been planted here in San Francisco. The school board proposes to rename 44 schools, including Washington High and…

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LAUGHING AT THE ANGEL OF DEATH

Death appears frequently in this week’s Torah portion, Va’yishlach (Genesis 32:4–36:43). It’s only fitting. I’ve been thinking about death lately. Also humor. They go hand in hand. As it says on the back cover of my upcoming novel The Boy Walker (available around the first of the year; I’ll keep you posted): death is nothing—and…

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