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The “Good Old Days”

10/16/2018 10:36:16 AM

Oct16

Rabbi Brad Levenberg

I love hearing about the “good old days” when it only took 30 minutes to drive 4 miles in Atlanta. Granted, those days date back a century or so, and I believe our recollection of the days when Atlanta was not as burdened with traffic are, in part, a bit of revisionist history. But it is not the recollection that stays with me, it is the context of the comment: often the line comes amidst a more lengthy conversation about the traffic and...Read more...

Atlanta Pride Parade

10/03/2018 09:30:50 AM

Oct3

Beth Schafer

According to the Torah Commentary Torah Queeries (a look at the weekly parsha through an LGBT lens), this week’s Torah portion poses many challenges for those whose gender identity does not align with their anatomy. In the 2nd creation story of this week’s parsha, we read that God created man and then from man, God removed a rib and fashioned woman.

Regardless of whether you take the story literally, most of us tend to label...Read more...

What's the Deal with Shemini Atzeret?

09/26/2018 09:50:08 AM

Sep26

Rabbi Sam Shabman

What’s the deal with Shemini Atzeret?

Early autumn is often referred to as the Jewish Calendar’s “busy season.”  In communities around the world, there are a myriad of ways we celebrate and commemorate during this time of year.

Perhaps our favorite Yom Kippur prayer is still buzzing in our ears,  or the taste of apples and honey is still on our tongues. The air at Sinai is filled with the sweet scent of...Read more...

Back On Earth

09/20/2018 08:47:41 AM

Sep20

Beth Schafer

Did you ever get an adrenaline rush when you’re about to do something that challenges you or makes you nervous? Or when you know you have to endure something longer than is comfortable? You center your strength, you focus on the task at hand, you psyche yourself up and you go for it. It is exhilarating, it is terrifying, it is all-encompassing. And then you reach the conclusion, you exhale; the intense frequency in which you were vibrating...Read more...

Hurricane Florence Hospitality Assistance

09/13/2018 09:30:08 AM

Sep13

Due to Hurricane Florence, we know there are many who have either sought or are seeking refuge in our community. If anyone you know has been displaced by this hurricane, we invite them to worship with us for Shabbat as well as for Yom Kippur as our guest, after which all are encouraged to break-the-fast with one of our Temple Sinai families or at the synagogue upon the conclusion of services.  Should any individuals seeking refuge from...Read more...

What Flips Your Switch?

09/05/2018 11:49:42 AM

Sep5

Rabbi Ron Segal

While looking over my ‘to do’ list, a small legal pad scrawled with a diverse litany of tasks awaiting attention, I began to consider what “flips the internal switch” to ultimately prompt my attention and execution.  Is it the ease of the task?  The enjoyment derived from a particular activity?  The press of time due to procrastination or perhaps urgent need?  Though not intended as another delaying tactic, the...Read more...

Death and Life

08/29/2018 10:16:29 AM

Aug29

Beth Schafer

In the past two weeks, our nation has bid farewell to two iconic figures Aretha Franklin and John McCain. Both with voices that stirred people, they lived boldly. Both survived hardships beyond what most of us will ever have to confront. We have seen biography after biography, clip after clip of the famed R&B musician and the esteemed senator. What extraordinary lives they indeed lived.

Judaism teaches that death often times helps...Read more...

MJCCA's Book Festival

08/22/2018 12:58:13 PM

Aug22

Rabbi Brad Levenberg

An avid reader, I eagerly anticipate the MJCCA’s annual Book Festival. The festival leadership succeeds in bringing top-tier authors to Atlanta each year and I revel at their stories, the behind-the-scenes anecdotes that they share about both the writing process and their subject matter, and the witty banter between the speaker and the audience. But it is truly the books that take my breath away each year.

Read more...

Introspection and Self-Reckoning

08/15/2018 12:40:30 PM

Aug15

Rabbi Sam Shabman

There is a story about three people working the same job, and someone approaches and asks each of them the question: "What are you doing?" “I’m making a living,” says one. “I’m dragging heavy stone,” says another. Finally, the third says, “I’m building a cathedral." It was only the third worker who grasped the ultimate human meaning of the task at hand. Often, we can find ourselves engaging in tasks, and yet forgetting the...Read more...

There's a Blessing for That

08/09/2018 09:26:51 AM

Aug9

Beth Schafer

I am a lifelong Apple fanatic and have been a Mac user and early adopter since my first Mac Plus in 1988. When the iPhone, came on the scene, in order to educate consumers on its capabilities, there was a great ad campaign with the tagline, “There’s an app for that.” Think of anything you want your phone to do and there’s an app for it.

I am sure this campaign had its roots in Judaism (although Steve Jobs was a Buddhist)....Read more...

Celebrating 50 Years of Temple Sinai Staff

07/30/2018 03:42:27 PM

Jul30

Rabbi Ron Segal

As you undoubtedly know by now, 2018 is a significant year for Temple Sinai as we continue celebrating our 50th anniversary. As we commemorate this moment in our congregation’s life, we take great pride and experience much joy as we reflect upon the many individuals who have offered their time and talents as members of our Temple Sinai staff family and as teachers of our students.

Both of these groups have contributed greatly...Read more...

Live with Great Empathy

07/26/2018 02:49:15 PM

Jul26

Rabbi Sam Shabman

Do not judge your fellow until you have reached his or her place
Al tadin et chaverach ad she tagia limkomo

Lately, I have been thinking about this quote from Pirkei Avot.

I lived most of my life naive to the circumstances of pregnant women. I knew that being pregnant was unique, and at times challenging, but I never really thought about what it entailed: the doctor appointments, the shopping, planning for childcare,...Read more...

Atlanta Reform Community Shabbat

07/19/2018 12:33:59 PM

Jul19

Rabbi Brad Levenberg

I used to live in a community where rabbis were pretty vocal about their dislike and distrust of other clergy people in town. Perhaps it is because there was such competition between rabbis and synagogues that the animus was rarely hidden, or perhaps it was just the culture of the community to have deep divides.

The stories of communities where Reform synagogues are antagonistic toward each other dominate the landscape. How...Read more...

Summer Camp and All That Jazz

07/11/2018 09:28:26 AM

Jul11

Beth Schafer

When I first entered college, it was to study jazz guitar. (There are not many women jazz guitarists out there, and my university was willing to put some chips down that I might be a decent one). I loved jazz-it was an amazing combination of the composer’s creation and a performer’s...Read more...

Foundations

07/05/2018 10:47:48 AM

Jul5

Rabbi Sam Shabman

With Hamilton’s tour recently in Atlanta, my Facebook Newsfeed filled with dozens of people at the show. As a result, the Hamilton playlist has made it back to the top of my listening list.

As I drove up to Lake Lanier yesterday, on the 4th of July, the words from the...Read more...

Haunted

06/28/2018 11:54:23 AM

Jun28

Beth Schafer

My Dear Friends,

I cannot sugarcoat this message. I cannot frame it in any comfortable, easy way because I am uncomfortable, and I imagine many of you are as well. Less than 3 weeks ago I had the good fortune of co-leading a women’s trip to Israel with Rabbi Shabman. As we...Read more...

Creating Positive Jewish Memories

06/18/2018 04:42:19 PM

Jun18

Rabbi Brad Levenberg

I sit here in Atlanta with my bags, well, not-yet-packed for a return visit to Camp Barney and a return week at Camp Coleman this upcoming Sunday…and I could not be more excited. There is something very special about the camp community.  Nowhere else is there amassed such talent and skill in one place, all with one common purpose: to create positive Jewish memories.  They sing, they dance, they tell stories, perform skits, and...Read more...

Taking Risks: Women of Sinai Trip to Israel

06/14/2018 09:26:38 AM

Jun14

By: Rabbi Sam Shabman

This week, I reflect upon risks big and small that we can take.  Is it that big and adventurous trip that you have been mulling over? Or that bold comment you have been aching to say? Or that new job? Or move? Sometimes taking a risk means simply being ourselves, and speaking our...Read more...

Temple Sinai's Women's Trip to Israel 2018

06/11/2018 12:00:57 PM

Jun11

Temple Sinai women are in Israel with Rabbi Sam Shabman and Beth Schafer.  Follow their experience on this blog and our Facebook Page here.

Click Here to see pictures from the trip.  

Monday, June 11 & Tuesday, June 12

The final part of our journey in Israel began with our arrival in Tel Aviv as the sun was beginning to set over the Mediterranean. After our hotel check-in, we walked...Read more...

Love of Israel

06/07/2018 11:54:43 AM

Jun7

By: Beth Schafer

They say that childhood is experiential. You can talk and talk and talk to a child trying to teach her something, but until she has the experience herself, she really doesn't internalize the learning.

As adults, we see a movie, read an...Read more...

A Sense of Synchronicity

05/31/2018 11:50:12 AM

May31

By: Beth Schafer

 

Last month I had the privilege of traveling with World Pilgrims (part of Atlanta’s Interfaith Coalition Initiative) to Sedona and Canyon De Chelly, Navajo Nation. For a week I experienced the grandeur of the southwest alongside my brothers and sisters of Christian and...Read more...

May God Bless You and Keep You

05/24/2018 09:20:29 AM

May24

By: Rabbi Sam Shabman

May God bless you and keep you

May God cause the divine light to shine upon you and be gracious to you

May God turn toward you and grant you peace

(Numbers 6: 24-26).

We read the above blessing (commonly known as the Priestly Benediction) in this...Read more...

50 Days of Spiritual Moments: Pirkei Avot

05/18/2018 08:00:09 AM

May18

Pirkei Avot 2:8 : "He who acquires a good name, has acquired himself something indeed." 
Interpreted by Fred Shessel
What is in a name? To ShRead more...

50 Days of Spiritual Moments: Music

05/17/2018 08:00:09 AM

May17

This week we feature Pirkei Avot 4:1 with a soul-stirring interpretation by an extraordinary songwriter, Rabbi Joe Black. To learn more about his musiRead more...

Setting the Stage for Next Year

05/16/2018 11:57:48 AM

May16

By: Rabbi Brad Levenberg

49 times in our congregation’s history we have gathered to discuss the business of Temple Sinai with the community as a whole. These meetings have been at times controversial – the meeting to approve the lot on Dupree Drive as our future home, the meeting...Read more...

50 Days of Spiritual Moments: Mindfulness

05/16/2018 08:00:10 AM

May16

Mussar is a Jewish ethical, educational, and cultural movement that developed in the 13th century in Lithuania. The term Mussar is from the book of PRead more...

50 Days of Spiritual Moments: Israel

05/15/2018 08:00:10 AM

May15

Making the Desert Bloom – Drip Irrigation  
As our world population gets bigger and bigger we are faced with a difficult predicament: how do Read more...

50 Days of Spiritual Moments: Mitzvot

05/14/2018 08:01:36 AM

May14

Dear Friends,
 
If you have still not “opted in” to receive our delightful, daily doses of spirituality, this is your last opportunity to do so.Read more...

50 Days of Spiritual Moments: Nature

05/13/2018 08:00:09 AM

May13

Rabbi Ya’akov Yosef of Polnoye

Nature itself is the Divine Presence.

​​​​​​​Special thank you to Margery Diamond for her beautifuRead more...

50 Days of Spiritual Moments: Pirkei Avot

05/11/2018 08:00:10 AM

May11

Pirkei Avot 2:15 : "Let your friend's honor be more dear to you than your own." 
Interpreted by David Schoenberg
#MeToo (unfortunately)

In tRead more...
Mon, October 22 2018 13 Cheshvan 5779