Sleep Jewish

Sunday night I had the great privilege to be in Irvine, at the amazing and new JCC. The Musical Mystery Tour began. OC Hillel has created a beit-cafe program in their student lounge for an evening of music and conversation with me, really, can you believe it? All told, this is going to be a marvelous venue for music and ideas, for thought provoking questions and discussion. The essence of our discussion was “What is the Jewish View on Relationships,” but of course it went far beyond this. We discussed brit milah, pre-marital sex, masturbation, the animal soul and the G-dly soul, the quest for love, and the agony of defeat.

But the main issue that we realized was: What do sexually active college students do to bring their lives and behavior closer in line with the Torah ideal, when they, nor their partners are ready for such a leap of faith and change of habit? How can we go from sleeping together now, and then say, well maybe we should put this off till marriage?

There are no easy simple answers and each person has his/her own journey. Even without the Jewish element, college is a time of establishing relationships, and

patterns that might be with us for the rest of our adult lives. How one acts in college can affect their entire lives. And I am not even speaking about the drastic things that can happen – STD’s, unplanned pregnancy, rape — but “normalâ€? behavior as well.

The crucial message to college students is: Sleep Jewish. So many students tell me that they are dating non-Jews.

So while I cannot offer a simply answer to the student who is sleeping with his girlfriend, at least lets make sure that she is Jewish. The rest we can work on later.

Its Raining Again Noah


Its raining. Now this may not be surprising to most SoCalniks (Yiddish for “from southern Caliâ€?), however, after many months without rain, I was getting pretty used to it. In fact since it is now thundering and lightening outside, I feel like a little of that old Midwestern fall I once knew. It said on the weather alert that this is the first rainfall in 181 days, that being the sixth longest dry spell since they started keeping this record in LA in 1921.

Here is the exact text I pulled from the weather.com alert page tonight.

THE LAST TIME MEASURABLE RAINFALL OCCURRED AT DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES WAS APRIL 17TH… WHEN (.01) INCHES WAS RECORDED. AS A RESULT… THE 181 CONSECUTIVE DAYS OF NO RAINFALL AT DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES WILL LIKELY COME TO AN END. THIS WOULD BE THE SIXTH LONGEST TIME PERIOD OF CONSECUTIVE DRY DAYS DATING BACK TO 1921. FOR MORE SIGNIFICANT RAINFALL AT DOWNTOWN LOS ANGELES… ONE WOULD HAVE TO GO BACK TO MARCH 2ND… WHEN (.27) INCHES OF RAIN WAS RECORDED.

SINCE THIS WILL BE THE FIRST SIGNIFICANT RAINFALL OF THE SEASON… ROADS WILL BE VERY SLICK. MOTORISTS SHOULD REDUCE SPEED AND USE EXTRA CAUTION ON WET ROADS. THE RAIN COULD ALSO CAUSE SOME DEBRIS FLOW OR MUD SLIDES IN RECENTLY BURNED AREAS.

So everyone should drive really carefully. Right like that is about to happen on the 405. But now on to my real point.

I found it quite profound that it began raining after we read Noah this week.

Isn’t interesting that there are no Jewish web sites on Noahs Ark. I have always been fascinated by the evangelical Christians who are so intent on proving everything correct in Genesis. The search teams for Noah’s ark, the movie, etc are all brought to us courtesy of some pretty interesting folks. And it goes on from there.

I believe that Jews have not had a traditional desire to prove everyting in the Torah because it just was accepted as history and tradition. There was not need to justify anything because Jews never sought to proselatize. The evangelical are out on the hunt for converts. Therefore, they must develop literature, sites, organizations to PROVE that the bible is true.

Do I think that today, in our generation, when so many Jews are not familiar with the Torah, would this kind of a thing be helpful? In truth, I am not sure that a great deal of energy spent on proving to Jews that such and such event happened will make a big impact in the Jewish world. I believe that people act from what is in their hearts and what makes sense for them at that time.

I believe that Noah built and ark, but I don’t feel the need to prove it to anyone.