Suzanne Debey

ISSUES OF FAITH: Seeking to right our wrongs

JEWISH TRADITION HAS always emphasized that we are created B’zelem Elohim, in God’s image, and we all have the spark of Divine within us. Thus,… Continue reading

 

ISSUES OF FAITH: Finding the courage to stand up for truth

The Talmud says, “Truth is the seal of the Holy One, blessed be He.” Rabbi Luzzatto (1707-1746) taught “Truth is one of the very foundations… Continue reading

 

ISSUES OF FAITH: Stand strong against anti-Semitism

“Anti-Semitism is the hatred that never dies. Violence that begins with the Jews never ends with them. All of this is true. What’s also true… Continue reading

 

ISSUES OF FAITH: ‘Love thy neighbor’ a call to action

The central tenet for Jewish behavior is the commandment to “Love your neighbor as yourself” found in the portion K’doshim (Leviticus 19:1-20:27). This portion is… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Fear is often a double-edged sword

Mahatma Gandhi said, “The enemy is fear. We think it is hate, but it is fear.” Fear can make us do things we normally wouldn’t… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Love and justice central themes for Judaism

“IGNORANCE IS THE curse of God; knowledge is the wing wherewith we fly to heaven,” (Shakespeare). Whenever I am asked to speak about Judaism, I… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Answering the call inside of everyone

IN JANUARY, JEWS begin reading the book of Exodus again, which tells of the dramatic birth of the Jewish people. So much is packed into… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Be a light in dark times

DURING THIS DARKEST time of the year, Rabbi Chaim Stern offers this prayer: “In my darkness be a light to me, in my loneliness help… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Choosing leaders in a crisis with Golden Rule

“WHEN THE CARES of my heart are many, your consolations cheer my soul” (Psalms 94:19). The world today can feel somewhat dangerous and chaotic, and… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: She put faith into action

IN MOURNING THE loss of Ruth Bader Ginsburg, a pillar of justice, integrity and honor who relied on her Jewish values to guide her, it… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Golden Rule a guide for behavior

WHEN RABBI HILLEL the Elder was asked somewhat sarcastically by a non-Jew to teach him the entire Torah while the man stood on one foot,… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Treat people as God’s creations

“SEEK JUSTICE, LOVE mercy, and walk humbly with God” (Micah 6:8). Judaism places the highest value on taking care of and seeking justice for the… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Finding kindness during the coronavirus crisis

“BLESSED ARE YOU, Eternal our God, Sovereign of the universe who has sanctified us through Your commandments, and commanded us to … .” This is… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Find beauty in small things during hard times

“ALL THE WORLD is a very narrow bridge. And the main thing to recall is to have no fear, to have no fear at all.”… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Measure the character of would-be leaders

THROUGHOUT THE TORAH, we are told of the importance of honesty and justice. In Deuteronomy 16:18-20, the portion Shoftim (Judges) begins with a grand declaration… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: The Exodus story in winter

THE TORAH PORTIONS from Exodus read during January are always a bit jarring and at the same time uplifting and hopeful. Jarring because they tell… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Find a way to ‘venture into the wilderness’

IN A RECENT reading of the Torah portion, Lech L’cha (“Go forth”), Abraham and Sarah are told, “Go forth from your native land and from… Continue reading

ISSUES OF FAITH: Recent holidays reinforce empathy and generosity

THE PHRASE “TZEDEK, tzedek tirdof” means “Justice, justice you shall pursue” (Deuteronomy 16), and the concept of tikun olam, which means “repairing the world,” are… Continue reading