Relationships & Family


A Wedding Made Unforgettable by Dad's Decision

From Odyssey Networks’ Faith on the Record series: At Brittany Peck’s wedding in Ohio last month, she reportedly worried about who should walk her down the aisle. Putting her feelings first, her father surprised guests when he reached a hand out to Brittany’s stepfather, pulled him from his seat, put their animosity aside and insisted that he participate in the bride’s entrance. The wedding photos taken by Delia Blackburn have gone viral, and it’s clear why: “There are probably more good partners in our lives than we realize the kind of......

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Are Memories the Heart of Wisdom?

A former New York costume designer once mentioned the concept of a “moment” to me. In theater costuming, a moment is some contrasting design element that catches the attention of the audience, so they focus on the lead actors, rather than on the supporting ones – think of a character in a red dress among a group dressed in pastels, another character in a shiny silver tuxedo among an ensemble dressed in muted gray. Why is this a moment? Because the attention of the audience pauses temporarily as they survey the scene,......

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A Reflection on Unconditional Love Inspired by Taylor Swift

Taylor Swift, the 25 year-old pop superstar, was quoted in the September issue of Vanity Fair about the one thing she demands in a mate. “If I found someone who would never try to change me, that would be the only person I could fall in love with,” Swift said. “Because, you know I was in love with my life.” At the risk of challenging celebrity wisdom and the ire of Ms. Swift’s millions of followers, I want to tweak Ms. Swift’s requirements for a mate. I imagine what she meant in......

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Recognizing When 'The Whole Truth' Won't Fulfill You

As generations of TV watchers know, the words “Do you swear to tell the truth, the whole truth and nothing but the truth?” pretty much define how we arrive at just decisions in state and local courts where that oath is used. But is it possible, even for the most honest and well-intentioned people, to actually live up to that promise? Perhaps even more importantly, does it lead to the best outcomes? Don’t get me wrong. I think truth is a really important ideal, and the well-known vow aims at inspiring people......

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A True Marriage Celebration

From Odyssey Networks’ Faith on the Record series: Today, our U.S. Supreme Court struck down bans on same-sex marriage in a historic ruling. In all candor, as an Orthodox rabbi, I don’t perform same-sex wedding ceremonies. Yet I applaud this decision with a full heart. “The institution of marriage was celebrated today and re-energized today it is a profound statement about freedom of expression and freedom of religion.” Watch my video for more insight and discussion.     Odyssey Networks tells the stories of faith in action changing the world for......

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What's in a (Father's) Name?

As Father’s Day approaches, the power of names in general – and fathers’ names in particular – is very real to me. In the words of William Shakespeare: “What’s in a name? That which we call a rose/By any other name would smell as sweet.” Juliet, by inviting Romeo to deny his father’s name and be “baptized” instead as her lover, is arguing that names don’t really matter.? And as much as that is true, it’s also false. We have three daughters, and who knows what family name they’ll each choose as......

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Ten Dads, in Detail: Wise Words

Father’s Day (June 21) is close at hand, so to launch a new week on The Wisdom Daily, we’re sharing ten uplifting, funny and poignant insights about the fatherhood experience – kicking off the list with two quotes from our co-founders, Brad Hirschfield and Irwin Kula. Whether you celebrate the holiday in appreciation of your dad, your kids or an influential father figure (or all those relationships!), we hope you’ll find words of wisdom here.   1. A Great Team “How sweet, those two or three games a year my father would......

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Whose Hands Mean the Most to You?

This month, the Whitney Museum of American Art opened the doors of its new building in Manhattan’s meatpacking district. One of the inaugural exhibitions, America is Hard to See, includes my favorite work of art: The Artist and His Mother, which?Arshile Gorky worked on from 1926-’36. There are two popular interpretations for why Gorky, an influential pre-abstract expressionist, spent a decade and ended up depicting his mother’s hands as white circles. Some say Gorky’s loose, painterly style was conducive to leaving parts of the work incomplete, because his memories of his mother......

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To My Own Beloved Graduate

My youngest daughter graduates in a few weeks. No, not college graduation, nor even a high school graduation (so there will be no famous speaker like those featured yesterday here on The Wisdom Daily). This is an 8th-grade graduation, but there is nothing “just” or “only” about it. The fact is, if someone had told me 13 years ago that our wonderful daughter would be graduating grammar school as a typical student, I would have told them that they must be smoking crack. To be sure, part of that estimation would’ve been......

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The Connection Between Your Heart and Mine

It’s been said that being a parent is like having a piece of one’s heart walking around outside of one’s chest. Being a parent means being vulnerable to everything that can go wrong in the world. It means (or should mean) being intimately attuned to someone else’s physical, emotional, intellectual and spiritual well-being; feeling their sorrows and their joys. However, this is not only true of being a parent. It’s the complicated blessing of being a person who loves any other person deeply. When someone is beloved to me, and I to......

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