The Jerusalem Lecture Series features acclaimed professors and educators addressing topics rarely discussed publicly in observant Jewish circles.
The public is invited to attend the
Jerusalem Lecture Series
Judaism, Heresy and Secular Philosophy
”Spinoza, the Kotzker Rebbe, and I“
By Rabbi Dr. Nathan Lopes Cardozo
Wednesday, October 26, 2011, at 8:00 PM
Yad Harav Nissim, 44 Jabotinsky Street, Jerusalem
Rabbi Prof. Sperber Slaughters Sacred Cow, Rabbi Grumet Bends Boundaries at Winter Jerusalem Lecture Series
A Daring Judaism aptly describes the theme of the 5771/2011 Jerusalem Lecture Series. No, there was no blood spilled as a result of Rabbi Prof. Daniel Sperber’s conclusion in his
presentation, Is Hinduism Considered Avoda Zara?, that it is not idolatry. But Rabbi Prof. Sperber’s remarks, which surveyed some Hindu sacred texts, and Jewish Law sources defining idolatry, may have shattered some taboos by exploring a subject rarely discussed publicly in observant Jewish circles.
The DCA’s own Rabbi Dr. Nathan Lopes Cardozo also ventured into sacrosanct territory with his talk, Is an Orthodox Conversion Kosher? New Solutions for an Unsolvable Problem. Rabbi Cardozo addressed the shortcomings of today’s conversion process in Israel, which often places candidates in ethical dilemmas as they seek to beat the system in order to convert successfully. And he proposed creating a new status for converts to eliminate many of the Halachic and social obstacles to this crisis which severely threatens the unity of the Jewish people today. Rabbi Cardozo also discussed the concept of a Jewish non-Jew and the possibility for gentiles to observe some of the Torah’s commandments.
Even over 3,000 years ago the unity of the Jewish people was at stake, posited Rabbi Zvi Grumet in his lecture, Who is Jewish Enough? Moshe Rabbeinu Bends the Boundaries. Through a close text reading of the Reuven, Gad and half of Menashe Tribes’ request to settle east of the Jordan River, Rabbi Grumet demonstrated how Moshe made difficult concessions in order to retain the unity of Bnei Yisrael.
A Daring Judaism series will conclude this spring with three final lectures by Professor Moshe Koppel on A Return to Heimish Judaism: How Ideologies Suffocate Religion; Professor William Kolbrener on Caught in the Act: Torah and Desire; and Rabbi Dr. Eliezer Shore on Moving Beyond Denominational Judaism?