Joel Lurie Grishaver
Because I understand loneliness, I believe in the existence of the human soul. I believe that we are engineered with a need for connection. People aren’t meant to be alone. More than just believing that infants need attention, I believe that all of us need family, community, and a circle of friends. Loneliness is the 60 cycle hum of the human soul turned on and running, but not yet connected. It is the screaming over the phone line—waiting for a modem on the other side to respond.
There are two basic ways of dealing with loneliness without making friends. One is to suffer. The other is to mask the loneliness with business. We try to be too busy to feel, or we try to numb the feeling. At the moment we have two realities. At this stage in the development of technology there seems to be a lot of engagement that can best be described as isolating.
Idie Benjamin and Dale Cooperman
Soon, we will gather with family and friends, at a Pesah seder, where we will celebrate the liberation of the Jewish people from slavery. Many of us will reflect that Jews throughout the world from Alaska to Katmandu, are participating in a seder. We will marvel at being a part of Klah Yisrael, the people of Israel. Our children are a part of this family as well.
What (and who) is Israel? What probably first comes to mind is “Israel” the country, the historic homeland of the Jewish People. But “Israel” is more. There is Israel “the place,” and Israel, “the people.” The mitzvah of Ahavat Yisrael, loving Israel, calls us to love both the land of Israel and Klal Yisrael, the people of Israel. Loving Israel links us to both the land and the people.
At Torah Aura we have been talking about the future a lot. Not only are we concerned with the latest (and immediate) changes in the field, but we have been asking, “What is our future role?” We have come up with a number of answers. We like to share some of them with you.
Joel Lurie Grishaver
To create the kinds of school-family partnerships that raise student achievement, improve local communities, and increase public support, we need to understand the difference between family involvement and family engagement. One of the dictionary definitions of involve is “to enfold or envelope,” whereas one of the meanings of engage is “to come together and interlock.” Thus, involvement implies doing to; in contrast, engagement implies doing with. (Ferlazzo, Larry “Involvement or Engagement? ”Educational Leadership.” May 2011. Volume 68 Number 8)
It is mid- December and the hallways at Oakland Hebrew Day School are pulsing with excitement. Hanukkah may be in full swing and winter break is soon to come, but this enthusiasm is not generated by these. No, our entire school is impatiently awaiting the annual Maccabia.