Tag: Chanukah


Shining a Light on Being Too Tired to Care

Bombarded with news stories of gun violence, and racist and Islamophobic rhetoric from politicians, I’ve begun to notice a numbness overtaking me. It’s a natural response to move away from pain, as from a hot flame. But even when I turn off the radio, or avoid reading official news sources, the pain of the world trickles into my social media feeds. Ideally, I want this pain to move me to act for change, but have begun to feel overwhelmed, to shut down. According to Dr. Joan Cook at Yale University, those of......

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Using the Holidays to Re-evaluate Priorities

Our stores and streets seem transformed: has the population suddenly doubled or has the clock suddenly switched to some kind of double time? There is a sense of frantic haste in the stores and streets. It’s that time of year. The time of year people leave their families at home while they spend hours scouring stores to buy mountains of gifts for those very people they left at home. The time of year when consumer products vaguely related to the holidays to which they refer cloud the spiritual traditions that inspired those......

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Is Chanukah Becoming Too Commercialized?

I was invited to appear alongside Rabbi Shmuley Boteach on Fox News’ show, Spirited Debate, to discuss the commercialization of Chanukah. As we discuss, I don’t think people should be defined by what they spend on any holiday, whether it’s Christmas or Chanukah. It’s about announcing a miracle, so go for it. But one shouldn’t be measured by how they celebrate, or ashamed by it either. What do you think? Click here to see our discussion....

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When It Comes to Holiday Greetings, Assume the Best

Back in 2009, Gap released one of my favorite holiday commercials. It featured a group of happy, sweater wearing, scarf-clad people dancing while chanting the following: Two, four, six, eight ’tis the time to liberate! Go Christmas! Go Chanukah! Go Kwanza! Go Solstice! Go classic tree! Go plastic tree! Go plant a tree! Go without a tree! You 86 the rules. You do what just feels right. Happy do whatever you wannukah and to all a cheery night! My then eight-year-old daughter loved the commercial as well and quickly memorized the lyrics.......

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Holiday Light, College Kids and Generosity: Our Week in Wisdom

On the Wisdom Daily this week (Nov. 30-Dec. 4), we discussed generalizing too negatively about young adults, prioritizing your own needs during stressful times, prescribing sexual standards for other people, participating in the ‘Giving Tuesday’ trend, shaming elected leaders about gun violence in America… and more. Did you grow wiser this week? We hope The Wisdom Daily played a part.   Today’s College Students: Self-Absorbed and Narcissistic? – Brad Hirschfield Are today’s college students really as “self-absorbed” and “narcissistic” as increasing numbers of people claim? Since broad generalizations, especially negative ones, are......

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Chanukah Wants You!

Do you find yourself longing for greater peace, and a bit more light, in what often feels like an increasingly dark and confusing time? Given the events of the passing days, weeks and months, that’s not surprising. In fact, how could it be otherwise? That is why the holiday of Chanukah has never been more important than it is this year. Since Rosh Hashanah, we have experienced carefully orchestrated mass murder in Paris and Mali , rising violence by seemingly grass-roots terrorists using knives,......

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What Makes Thanksgiving the Happiest Day?

Thanksgiving is upon us. Soon, we’ll be shopping for Thanksgiving dinner, buying more than 50 million turkeys and spending more than $2.8 billion at the grocery store. Over 25 million people will hop on an airplane, and millions more will hit the road or board a train, in order to spend Thanksgiving with loved ones. The traveling, shopping, cooking and spending will be worth it as studies indicate that out of all American holidays, Thanksgiving is the one that consistently makes us happy. As the number of Americans who choose not to......

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