The Link Sink

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A few links that have been collecting dust on my desktop:

  • In j, the Jewish news weekly of northern California, Eliyahu Stern, a graduate student in Judaic studies, wonders “Where have all the intellectuals gone?” It’s an elegy for the great rabbinical mind of years past, like Soloveitchik, Kaplan and Heschel–and an indictment of the modern Jewish world, which he feels hasn’t produced minds of a similar caliber and appeal. Even without a deep knowledge of the intellectual scene in each of the movements, I can point to a few names, that love them or hate them, always have provocative ideas and make people think: Dennis Prager, Rabbi Michael Lerner, Rabbi Harold Kushner, Rabbi Elliot Dorff. Like the forebears he mentions in his article, these four all are deeply concerned with the theology, philosophy and practice of Judaism, and each of the four has been in the public spotlight. No doubt there are numerous other names, especially among the Orthodox, that I don’t know. I think Stern is a bit guilty of the “golden days syndrome” where the men of the past always look better, smarter, more honorable than the men of the present. Only time will tell if any of contemporary intellectuals will leave a legacy as powerful as Martin Buber.
  • The (Pittsburgh) Jewish Chronicle has trained its focus recently on issues facing interfaith families. Yesterday I told you about an article they did on interfaith burial options. Here’s a link to a story on interfaith families sending their children to Jewish day schools. And a while back, they did a story on teenage interdating.
  • A nice little piece from the Fort Wayne News-Sentinel got lost in the shuffle among the blizzard of December dilemma pieces toward the end of last year. Called “How Should We Approach Interfaith Marriage?” this Q&A with a rabbi and a minister from the United Church of Christ has some useful nuggets of advice for people who are intermarrying.
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