Tag: religion

Review: Joseph Anton, A Memoir, by Salman Rushdie

From the Canadian Jewish News, January 2013 London-based writer Salman Rushdie was happy to sell his novel The Satanic Verses to Viking Penguin in February 1988. But six months after the novel appeared, the Ayatollah Khomeini issued a fatwa against him for his blasphemous insult “against Islam, the Prophet and the Qur’an.” Instantly he became…

Capernaum is rich in Christian history

In the ancient fishing village of Capernaum, above the northwestern shore of the Sea of Galilee, visitors may examine a partially reconstructed 2nd- or 3rd-century synagogue and glimpse portions of the underlying remains of an earlier synagogue in which Jesus is said to have preached. The town’s name derives from the Hebrew name K’far Nachum,…

Furor over United Church pastor-editor (1969)

Can’t See the Forrest for the Trees Editor’s note: In July 2012 the United Church of Canada is considering a boycott of Israeli goods, a proposal that nine Canadian senators have condemned. This is only further evidence that, when it comes to relations with Israel and the Jews, the Church has had a long and…

Publisher has strong ideological mission

Nearly a decade after he founded a publishing company with a strong ideological mission, Howard Rotberg may take his place among that small and proud group of Canadians who operate successful small publishing houses. Although Mantua Books started off slowly, it now publishes one new title each month. Some of the books sell tens of…

Toronto’s Rabbi Shemen adds to Jewish scholarship

Talmudic scholar, journalist and the author of more than 20 books, Toronto’s Rabbi Nachman Shemen recently published (1989) two volumes titled Jewish Attitudes Towards Man. Shemen’s latest contribution to Jewish scholarship includes interpretations on Biblical, Talmudic, rabbinic and literary studies. The two volumes, published in Tel Aviv In Yiddish, discuss issues that date back to creation…

Secular Humanism: Jews without God

Rabbi Sherwin Wine of Birmingham Temple, Detroit, asserts that all of the patriarchs and prophets of ancient Israel are only myths — and so is the God of the Jewish people. Heretical utterances for a rabbi? Certainly, in any previous age. But today Rabbi Wine is the founder of a secular humanistic arm of Judaism…

The Bible and modern cosmology in perfect harmony

The Biblical account of the creation of the universe is in “complete and remarkable agreement” with the latest findings of modern cosmology, notes a leading Israeli physicist who has written a book on the subject. “At least regarding the first chapter of Genesis, the era of contradiction between Torah and science is over,” says Professor…

Profile: Deepak Chopra, growth-industry guru

From out of the infinite void comes a new book by Deepak Chopra — How To Know God: The Soul’s Journey into the Mystery of Mysteries — along with Chopra himself, fresh off an early-morning flight from Washington DC, visiting Toronto as part of an 18-city promotional tour. At 53, the Californian growth-industry guru appears…

Inside glimpse of Hassidic Crown Heights

“One of the reasons we started doing this is because there’s so much misinformation out there about the Hassidic community,” says Rabbi Beryl Epstein, tour guide for a busload of visitors that leaves midtown Manhattan for 770 Eastern Parkway, headquarters of the Lubavitch Hassidic movement in the Crown Heights section of Brooklyn. During the 45-minute…

Kohelet is a knotty and naughty book

“Futility of futilities! All is futile!” I heard someone mutter recently while glancing up with darkened brow from the pages of Kohelet, the Biblical book also known as Ecclesiastes. The utterance was understandable, since most commentators, if they agree on anything at all about Kohelet, seem in accordance that it is a most vexing and…