Torah Buzz Blog

The TBE Blog is the space where Temple Beth El’s Leadership Team members reflect on relevant topics that are most meaningful to us. Here you will find musings on everything from prayer to politics, music to mysticism and history to current day life. From our iPads, smartphones, and laptops to yours, these are the things that inspire us, keep us up at night, and fuel our own Jewish journeys.


Day 6 of the Omer – the firm footing for giving

Yesod in Chesed - the bridge, or lens, or foundation, in compassion. Yesod is where we start, a firm footing for our first st...


Day 5 of the Omer – Compassion requires sympathy

Hod in Chesed - grace, the sense of our smallness, in compassion.​ When we see ourselves as small, we connect sympathetical...


Day 4 of the Omer

Netzach in Chesed - victory of the self in compassion and kindness. Netzach is often associated with a powerful sense of self...

Day 3 of the Omer – Compassion for the long term

Mar 29

Tiferet in Chesed – harmonious balance in loving kindness. Tiferet often connotes beauty, perhaps a supreme harmonized balance between important values – in this case between Chesed, compassion and kindness, and Gevurah, strength and rigor. Perhaps the beauty we find is the balance between immediate needs and long term needs. In order to enact kindness […]

Day 2 of the Omer – Rigorous Compassion

Mar 28

Gevurah in Chesed – power or rigor in compassion. At first glance two difficult to combine concepts, still to apply compassion rigorously we would have to demand compassion of ourselves even when we feel no kindness. Often our first response to difficulty excludes any compassion. To be rigorous in kindness would require us to admit […]

Day 1 of the Omer – Second Night of Passover Too!

Mar 26

Tonight is Chesed in Chesed – Compassion and loving-kindness in itself.​ Each of the 49 days between tonight and Shavuot, the next big Jewish holiday represents an Omer, a sheaf of barley brought in for the spring harvest. Since we were dependent on that harvest for food in the summer, this became a time of […]

Temple Beth El’s Passover Seder Supplement – 5773/2013

Mar 25

Chag Sameach! Happy Passover everyone! Check out TBE’s Seder Supplement – feel free to use any or all of it for your own Passover Seder! Reflections and insight on today’s issues as they apply to our celebration of Freedom by Rabbi Judy Schindler, Cantor Mary Thomas, and Rabbi Jonathan Freirich. Download the file from here: […]

Soul Prints – Rabbi Judy Returns from Interfaith Journey to Israel

Mar 12

It is great to be home after a most inspiring journey to Israel with our decades long partner in dialogue Myers Park Baptist Church. I missed my husband and kids. Here is the poem I wrote this morning called “Soul Prints (Interfaith Journey 2013)” Toward the altar of old, Jews travelled from the farthest places […]

Temple Beth El Welcomes People Seeking Judaism

Feb 20

At Temple Beth El we welcome people exploring Judaism as an option, and Rabbi Judith Schindler carries on in her father’s teachings about doing so – check out an article that mentions Rabbi Alexander Schindler on the topic here:

Causing God to Dwell in Our Midst

Feb 18

This week, in parashat T’rumah, Exodus25:1-27:19, the Torah details the commands for the building of the Mishkan, the Tabernace, or portable Temple. We can understand about the need to bring God into our presence, even today, when we imagine God to be beyond the ideas of a tent or an ark of the covenant that […]