100%

Scanned image of the page. Keyboard directions: use + to zoom in, - to zoom out, arrow keys to pan inside the viewer.

Page Options

Share

Something wrong?

Something wrong with this page? Report problem.

Rights / Permissions

The University of Michigan Library provides access to these materials for educational and research purposes. These materials may be under copyright. If you decide to use any of these materials, you are responsible for making your own legal assessment and securing any necessary permission. If you have questions about the collection, please contact the Bentley Historical Library at bentley.ref@umich.edu

May 22, 1987 - Image 37

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1987-05-22

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

DO YOU WANT SOMETHING FOR YOUR MONEY?

CALL

A TISKET A TASKET

OUR BASKETS ARE FULLER AND PRETTIER
IT'S A BASKET ABOVE THE REST!

Judaism Has Two
Contradictory Functions

RABBI IRWIN GRONER

Special to The Jewish News

R

eligion, it has been
pointed out, has two,
almost contradictory
functions in our lives. On the
one hand, it should comfort us
when we are disturbed; on the
other, it should disturb us when
we are comfortable.
Any student of Jewish history
knows how supremely well
Judaism performed its first
function. Were it not for the life-
restoring reservoirs of strength
and hope that the Jew constant-
ly found in his heritage, he
could not possibly have surviv-
ed repeated efforts to destroy
him.
Heinrich Heine, in a very
remarkable phrase, called our
Bible "the medicine chest of
humanity" For all of life's
bruises and aches, for the soul's
distress and anguish, the Bible
contains most effective healing
balm. It can comfort the
disturbed as no other book can.
/- Consider Jeremiah, a most
tragic figure in Jewish history.

Shabbat Behar -
Bechukotai:
Leviticus
25:1-27:34
Jeremiah
16:19-17:14

In the Haftorah portion for this
Sabbath he declares: "0 Lord,
my strength and my
stronghold, and my refuge in
the day of affliction."
But the same prophet who
could soothe with motherly
compassion and fatherly
tenderness could scold with the
most bitter condemnation.
Through all of his prohecies,
Jeremiah teaches that religion
is true. Its first claim is not
because of the benefit it brings,
but because religion provides a
valid and real picture of the
universe. For the prophet,
religion is truth, or it should
not command loyalty. What is
that truth? That the core of life
is moral. The ultimate reality
that God has hammered into
the very structure of the
universe are the principles of
justice and right.
The
Torah
portion,
Bechukotai, begins with a
powerful word, "If," which plays
a critical role in our lives. "If
you follow the commandments,
then there will be serenity and
fulfillment . . . and yoishall lie
down and none shall make you

Irwin Groner is rabbi at
Cong. Shaarey Zedek.

afraid . . . But if you reject the
commandments and break the
Covenant, then there will be
misery and suffering . . . and
you shall flee when none pur-
sues you." Our universe is

governed
by moral law, and in
the moral as in the physical
realm, laws cannot be violated
without dire consequences.
This truth needs emphasis in
our time; a sense of realism has
been preempted by the more
tangible and visible aspects of

TORAH PORTION

our life. Science, business and
politics — these are deemed
real. "I'm realistic," a man says,
"not religious. So rabbi, we
must be practical?'
In the judgement of the Torah
and the prophets, the spiritual
universe of values and moral
laws is as real as the world our
eyes see. To validate that state-
ment; ask Ivan Boesky or Gary
Hart or Col. Oliver North. To
disregard the basic rules of
morality in the name of lust or
power or unlawful gain is to
violate those laws and stan-
dards upon which the very
structure of our society is built.
There is a heroic quality in
religion that is not emphasized
enough. You must lead a cer-
tain kind of life; restrain your
appetites; train your mind. You
must educate yourself in the ex-
periences of faith and love
through prayer and deed, act
and attitude. It is a great "if"
with which the Torah portion .
begins. Consolations of faith
can be attained only by those
who are willing to submit to the
discipline of religion.
It is not a matter of saying a
few words or raising a hand to
indicate acceptance when an
evangelist calls for those who
want to be saved. Religion is
serious and makes demands.
Judaism never promised ease
for a moment's devotion. It has
never sought to lure converts
with the glittering attractions
of convenience and eternal
bliss. Religion sometimes
disturbs our comfort, when it
asks us to do the inconvenient,
the difficult.
For those who are disturbed
and who are laden by sorrow
and distress, we express the
hope that religion will bring
comfort. But for those who are
complacent and too comfor-
table, we voice the plea that
religion should disturb us, and
thereby inspire us to
achievements worthy of men
and women who are children of
God, and who are capable of a
creative and noble life.

Monday-Friday
_ 9:30 a.m.-4:30 p.m.

Local and
Nationwide
Delive ry
Days
a Week

BARBARA KAPLAN

661-4789

7

SLATE 6

Herut Zionists - Techiya
Sephardic Movement Coalifion

Betar•Tagar Zionist Youth Groups

UNITING THE JEWISH PEOPLE
FOR A UNITED LAND OF ISRAEL.

/

A\

Hillel Day School of Metropolitan Detroit
cordially invites
The Detroit Jewish Community
To Share With Our Families and Friends

A Dedication Ceremony

for the

William, Ethan and Marla Davidson Wing

and the

Jean and Sam Frankel Wing

and the many other generous gifts to our building.

10:30 a.m.

Sunday, June 14, 1987

Guest Speaker:

Martin Pasternak

Hillel Class of 1974
Student of the Graduate Rabbinical School,
Jewish Theological Seminary

Dedication Ceremony Chairpersons

Anaruth Bernard

Melvyn Friedman

— Reception Immediately Following Ceremony —

Hillel Day School

32200 Middlebelt, Farmington Hills
For further information, call 851-2394

37

Back to Top

© 2021 Regents of the University of Michigan