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Dumb and Dumber

Every time you think religious leaders can’t get any more dumb, they get dumber! So Katrina was punishment for the Gaza withdrawal was it? “Hurricanes hardly happen”, but why didn’t one turn up off the Gaza coast instead? Sometimes I really wonder what the Almighty thinks about the way some rabbis make our religion into a laughingstock. And it doesn’t…

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My Own Trumpet

I’ve just had a book of my essays published in Manchester. It’s not my first book. I’ve written others on Judaism, theology and mysticism. But for me this book is rather special. I was brought up in an oral society. My late father, universally known as Kopul Rosen, was a famous orator. His style of grand oratory is no longer…

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Synagoguaphobia

As we start the month of Elul and prepare ourselves for the coming Days of Awe, the pit of my stomach tightens as I realize that the time of the year is approaching when I’m going to have to spend a lot more time than usual in synagogues. I ought to explain how I came to feel this way. I…

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The Withdrawal and Divine Intervention

In response to feedback I have received to the previous post (Withdrawal from Gaza), I wish to clarify my remarks about the dangers of declaring that it was the will of God not to withdraw from the settlements: My position is based on the Gemara in Sanhedrin 87b. Rabbi Shmuel ben Nahmani said in the name of Rabbi Yehonatan, “May…

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Withdrawal from Gaza

There have been so many different reactions from all over the world to the withdrawal from Gaza and parts of Samaria, focusing on different and often totally opposite perspectives. This is my personal response and, as usual, it is concerned primarily with the religious aspect. If one is going to take a religious position, then I stand fair and square…

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Conversion American Style

The evacuation from Gaza is still going on as I write so I’d rather let the dust settle before I deal with it. I am returning to the issue of conversion because the refusal by the London Beth Din and Chief Rabbinate to accept conversions carried out in Israel and elsewhere continues to rumble on and get worse. We Jews…

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