Jews survived all the defeats, expulsions, persecutions and pogroms, the centuries in which they were regarded as a pariah people, even the Holocaust itself, because they never gave up the faith that one day they would be free to live as Jews without fear.
Technology gives us power, but it does not and cannot tell us how to use that power. Thanks to technology, we can instantly communicate across the world, but it still doesn't help us know what to say.
Close to a billion people - one-eighth of the world's population - still live in hunger. Each year 2 million children die through malnutrition. This is happening at a time when doctors in Britain are warning of the spread of obesity. We are eating too much while others starve.
When we love and make loving commitments, we create families and communities within which people can grow and take risks, knowing that hands will be there to catch them should they fall.
Jews know this in their bones. Our community could not exist for a day without its volunteers. They are the lifeblood of our organizations, whether they involve welfare, youth, education, care of the sick and elderly, or even protection against violence and abuse.
True freedom requires the rule of law and justice, and a judicial system in which the rights of some are not secured by the denial of rights to others.
In thinking about religion and society in the 21st century, we should broaden the conversation about faith from doctrinal debates to the larger question of how it might inspire us to strengthen the bonds of belonging that redeem us from our solitude, helping us to construct together a gracious and generous social order.
Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, is the holy of holies of Jewish time. It is that rarest of phenomena, a Jewish festival without food. Instead it is a day of fasting and prayer, introspection and self-judgment when, collectively and repeatedly, we confess our sins and pray to be written into God's Book of Life.
Stabilizing the euro is one thing, healing the culture that surrounds it is another. A world in which material values are everything and spiritual values nothing is neither a stable state nor a good society. The time has come for us to recover the Judeo-Christian ethic of human dignity in the image of God.
Jews have deep respect for the Queen and the royal family. We say a prayer for them every Sabbath in synagogue. We recite a special blessing on seeing the Queen.
Part of the beauty of Judaism, and surely this is so for other faiths also, is that it gently restores control over time. Three times a day we stop what we are doing and turn to God in prayer. We recover perspective. We inhale a deep breath of eternity.
No great achiever - even those who made it seem easy - ever succeeded without hard work.
Religion creates community, community creates altruism and altruism turns us away from self and towards the common good... There is something about the tenor of relationships within a religious community that makes it the best tutorial in citizenship and good neighborliness.
In an ecology of love, people can relate in trust and face the future without fear. They do not need to play it safe. They can take uncertainty in their stride.
What I find fascinating about Hanukkah, the Jewish festival of lights we celebrate at this time of the year, is the way its story was transformed by time.
Make space in your life for the things that matter, for family and friends, love and generosity, fun and joy. Without this, you will burn out in mid-career and wonder where your life went.
God's forgiveness allows us to be honest with ourselves. We recognize our imperfections, admit our failures, and plead to God for clemency.
The Holocaust survivors are among the most inspiring people I have had the privilege to meet.
Frequent worshippers are also significantly more active citizens. They are more likely to belong to community organizations, especially those concerned with young people, health, arts and leisure, neighborhood and civic groups and professional associations.
The Hebrew Bible contains multiple provisions to ensure that no one would go hungry. The corners of the field, forgotten sheaves of grain, gleanings that drop from the hands of the gleaner, and small clusters of grapes left on the vine were to be given to the poor.