My Program of Teaching and Speaking:

Sample Lectures | Weekend Programs | Commentary and Debate

Sample Lectures

The Book of Job- This dramatic story shows two very different ways to believe in God. Is it a dramatic portrayal of the power of a benevolent God? Or does it argue that God is the strength of the universe, without any notion of benevolence or personal involvement with mankind. We’ll look at some of the challenges in understanding ancient texts, and how we find our meaning.

Understanding the Sh’ma and V’ahafta-This central prayer in Jewish practice expresses the commitment to a monotheistic God. Is it a supernatural God? Is it the god of the physical universe? How is it directing us to act? We’ll look at the text carefully, and the origin of some of the key words to understand deeper ways to understand and prayer these key prayers.

Spirituality for the non-believer—What is spirituality? Does it require that one believe in a God which is supernatural, omniscient, omnipresent, omnipotent, and benevolent? This talk will introduce spirituality based in the awe, beauty and wonder of the real world, and on the measureable effects of meditation. We'll see how spirituality and religion can coexist with science and rationality.

Jews in Jail (with Chaplain Linda Seidman)- Yes, there are Jews in jail. We’ll discuss the experiences of Jews who have been incarcerated as they search to understand themselves and Judaism, and thereby to find repentance and to build the spiritual strength to reenter the world and the Jewish community as healthy, free individuals.

Weekend Programs

Diversity in Jewish Tradition and practice

This weekend program integrates services with a series of lectures. The services feature comments on the siddur to show where the text reflects alternate viewpoints, and allows multiple interpretations. This will be paralleled by lectures looking at some of the key eras in the last three thousand years and how they reflect diversity in Jewish thought and practice.

God Talk-What do You really believe?

This program provides a safe and comfortable environment to explore ones beliefs about God and how to practice Judaism. It features exploration of the prayers in the service, talks about the range of alternatives to key ideas in Jewish tradition, and discussions and workshops to help clarify ideas. The goal is to end with a clearer belief in God, consistent with each person's experiences and rational thought processes.

Commentary and Debate

I am eager to bring my unique point of view as a Rabbi and experienced Ph. D. engineer and rational manager to the issues involving religion today. I can offer commentary, clarification, and debate on topics such as:

  • Is religion compatible with science?
  • What is faith and is it important?
  • How can we defend religion vs. atheism and anti-theism?
  • Diversity versus Orthodoxy in Religion.

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