The Jewish holiday of Passover is upon us. Every year, this festive 8-day period celebrates the liberation of the Israelite slaves from ancient Egypt.
Friends and family gather to remember the bitter taste of slavery and oppression and to ensure that it never happens again. It is considered the responsibility of every person during Passover to unmask oppression wherever it is present and to help those oppressed find a way to freedom.
My nine-year-old son was in tears last week after having been told that his hockey season would be suspended indefinitely as a result of southeastern Quebec falling back into “red alert.” Just another pandemic dagger plunged deeply into his young and sensitive heart.
I wanted to reach out to a friend to connect and to share. It then dawned on me that I haven’t spoken to many of my closest friends in months. Nor have I seen many beloved cousins, aunts, and uncles in almost a year. …
I am not a conspiracy theorist.
I don’t believe that a small group of people (no matter how rich or influential) can influence global events to such a degree as to control everything and everyone. There are just too many intangibles, unknown variables, and things in life that cannot be controlled or manipulated.
However, I am very troubled by the all-too-common attack on concerned citizens asking critical questions about the nature of the pandemic as well as questioning the actions of governments and the media. …
Since March of this year, we have been assaulted from all sides by fear. And the onslaught continues. In fact, the current climate of fear is putting our very humanity under threat. The subtle, most beautiful and intimate things that make us human may soon become extinct. How we react to these threats will shape the world of our children, our grandchildren, and for generations to come.
When was the last time you had a group hug? When was the last time you sat shoulder to shoulder with friends on a couch, sipping wine, laughing and nuzzling mischievously into one…
Last week, a good friend of mine who is single and lives in the city said to me on the phone, “I’ve got a date tonight. I’m done with Covid. I can’t take it anymore. I need hugs! I need cuddles!”
I couldn’t blame her. These past two months, I’ve thought about what it must have been like for all those single people living alone. Devoid not only of human contact, but of intimate, physical contact, a critical part of any human being’s mental, emotional and physical health.
I never thought we’d reach this point in our world, but it…
I recently heard an old Buddhist tale:
Once upon a time, a wise Buddhist monk was sitting under a tree. Nergal, the god of death, pestilence and plague, flew down from the sky and hovered in the air next to the monk.
The monk asked him, “Where are you going?” And the god of pestilence said, “I’m going into town, and there I will kill one hundred people.”
As we head into the 4th week of the COVID-19 global lockdown, the psychic waves of worry, anxiety, and even panic emanating from all corners of the earth are palpable. In these uncertain and unprecedented times, the ground literally can feel like it’s shifting beneath our feet, leaving us feeling insecure, vulnerable, and wary about the future.
At the root of it all, however, lies fear.
If we let it, fear can take hold of us like an 18-foot boa constrictor and strangle the life right out of us. It can cause us to make knee-jerk and neurotic decisions that…
Not long after my son was born, my soulmate and life-partner confided in me that she was weary about sending him to school. And that her first choice would be to homeschool him.
I was kind of surprised. After all, there were some supposedly good schools in our area. The thought of not sending our son to school had never occurred to me. I always just took it for granted that would be the case.
But overall, I didn’t have a problem with my partner’s wish. Both she and I had been pretty traumatized in elementary school and high school…
My uncle Sasha (may he rest in peace) spent the prime years of his youth in Auschwitz concentration camp. “Four years in paradise,” he used to say with exasperation, irony, and wisdom in his voice all at once.
For many survivors of the camps, understandably, even uttering a few words acknowledging the tremendous suffering they experienced during that time is next to impossible. The traumatic wounds buried deep within the subconscious are too painful to bear. Not for Sasha. His strength of character and the depth of his connection to humanity and the world would not let him be silent.
It’s a myth I’ve been hearing since I was old enough to talk (which is over 45 years ago): the Arabs venomously hate Jews and want to throw us into the sea. Not only that, even in the unlikely event that we do somehow manage to make peace with the Palestinians, they will always secretly hate us. And one day in the future, be it in one hundred or two hundred years, when our guard is down, they will turn on us and attempt to wipe us off the face of the Mediterranean Peninsula.
Writer, futurist, peacemaker, and aspiring bodhisattva