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Tikkun is a magazine dedicated to healing and transforming the world. We seek writing that gives us insight on how to make that utopian vision a reality. We build bridges between religious and secular progressives by delivering a forceful critique of all forms of exploitation, oppression, and domination while nurturing an interfaith vision of a caring society — one whose institutions are reconstructed on the basis of love, generosity, nonviolence, social justice, caring for nature, and awe and wonder at the grandeur of the universe. To learn more, read our Core Vision statement.
Our founding editor, Rabbi Michael Lerner, also leads Beyt Tikkun, a Jewish Renewal synagogue in the San Francisco Bay Area.
Tikkun brings together progressive Jewish, Christian, Muslim, Hindu, Buddhist, Wiccan, secular humanist, and agnostic/atheist voices to talk about social transformation and strategies for political and economic democratization. These authors discuss the best ways to support the evolution of consciousness needed to save our planet from environmental destruction and from the perversion of human relations generated by the globalization of selfishness and materialism popularly known as capitalist globalization. In this way, Tikkun creates space for the emergence of a Religious Left that can not only counter the power of the Religious Right, but can also cross certain Left/Right boundaries by speaking to the deepest needs of human beings—needs that are obscured by the “values-free” education and media discourse that predominates in contemporary Western societies.
The spiritual progressive ideas of Tikkun are amplified through the consciousness-raising efforts of the Network of Spiritual Progressives (NSP), the interfaith educational and social action organization of our magazine. Our perspective derived from our desire to spread information about the psychodynamics of American society that we obtained as researchers for the Institute for Labor and Mental Health. In that research we came to understand that while the traditional Left primarily focuses on the ways our society is unfair in its distribution of economic well-being and political rights (both domestically and globally), many Americans face equally pressing spiritual, love, and respect deprivations, which are too often ignored by the liberal and progressive world. By failing to address the hunger for love, kindness, generosity of spirit, and a framework of meaning and purpose that transcends the selfishness and materialism of the competitive marketplace, the Left often makes itself irrelevant to the yearnings of many Americans.
Tikkun began in 1986 in part to address this hunger for love and meaning, and in part as a progressive Jewish alternative to Commentary magazine, pushing back against neoconservatism in the Jewish world and U.S. politics, with strong coverage and analysis of issues related to Israel/Palestine, the politics of the U.S. social theory, philosophy, and cultural critique, as well as including fiction, poetry and reviews of books and film. It became world-famous as the first serious Jewish intellectual and cultural magazine to systematically critique the Israeli Occupation of the West Bank and Gaza and to challenge the materialism and spiritual deadness that a new generation of Jews were experiencing in many of the formal institutions of the Jewish world. Yet Tikkun has done all this not to delegitimate the existence of the State of Israel or to weaken Judaism, but rather to foster a spiritual and ethical renewal both in Israel and among world Jewry. In so doing, we helped provide the intellectual foundation for the emergence of a rich array of social justice-oriented organizations in the Jewish world and of organizations critical of Israeli policy toward Palestinians yet supportive of Israel’s right to exist.
We originally called our outreach organization the Tikkun Community but changed it to become the Network of Spiritual Progressives — recognizing that Tikkun had evolved into both a significant Jewish magazine and also a fully interfaith magazine whose writers and readers also span the religious/secular divide.
Can we be both rooted in Judaism and also interfaith? Yes, this is the unique promise of prophetic Jewish tradition. These lines from Isaiah about the future were taken by our rabbis and placed at the center of the Jewish High Holiday tradition: “My house will be called a house of prayer for all peoples.” The idea was not that everyone would convert to Judaism, but that in one place all the different traditions of the world could be together in mutual harmony and celebrate the grandeur and mystery of being itself! So Tikkun is a Jewish voice, but it is also an interfaith voice.
For those who are new to Tikkun, it may be a bit confusing to understand all the different things that are going on. So let us clarify.
First, there is Tikkun‘s print magazine, a quarterly published by Duke University Press and directed by Rabbi Michael Lerner, managing editor Ari Bloomekatz, contributing editors, and our editorial advisory board. The articles in our quarterly have been recruited and carefully edited, but they do not necessarily reflect Tikkun‘s official views, because we seek a wide variety of perspectives (sharing the view that “a marketplace of ideas” in vigorous contention either with each other or with dominant ideas in our mainstream media and intellectual institutions is most likely to yield wisdom and truth). The official Tikkun perspective is available in the editorials of the quarterly.
The web versions of the articles from the quarterly are available only to those who are either dues-paying members of the Network of Spiritual Progressives or those who have separately subscribed to Tikkun. We publish a few paragraphs of every article from the quarterly on our website, with a click-through that requires each reader to subscribe, join the NSP, or log in as an already registered member or subscriber to read the rest.
Then there’s our magazine website, tikkun.org, where you’ll find both the online versions of the quarterly’s articles and also many online-only offerings. These online-only pieces are also excellent articles to read, and they are all for free. Many of our online-only articles are pieces that we would like to have put in the quarterly, but put online only because they have a timely quality to them—and the quarterly now has a five-month lead time from the moment we send the articles to Duke University Press to the moment when you receive them at home or buy Tikkun at a bookstore. To receive periodic newslettters with links to these online-only articles, sign up here.
Now, in addition to all that, we have a daily blog, Tikkun Daily. You can sign up for a free, weekly or daily digest of Tikkun Daily blog posts here (you have to do this separately from joining the NSP or subscribing to the print version).
While the online magazine is carefully edited, our blog, Tikkun Daily, is different in that we give our regular bloggers pretty much a free hand in what they write, though we ask them to flag when they are diverging strongly from Tikkun’s core editorial positions. You’ll often find very high quality articles on Tikkun Daily, though you’ll also find views with which we strongly disagree (but that’s the beauty of the internet).
Finally, you’ll find on our website new poetry and fiction, some of which has not made it into the quarterly for lack of space. You’ll also find a whole section under Rabbi Lerner’s picture that includes some of his own up-to-date thinking plus articles to which he particularly wishes to draw your attention. And you’ll also find some of the timeless founding documents or core spiritual reflections, plus a whole column called “recommended from the web”—all under the picture of our founding editor.
Tikkun is a nonprofit publication whose survival depends on small but regular donations from readers and network members. Please help us stay afloat by joining the NSP or making a donation! Equally important: leave us a bequest (put us in your will—we will all die someday, and it often brings some comfort to know that the projects and ideas we care about will continue to live on after us). But don’t wait for your death to donate to Tikkun. We need your help now.
We welcome your comments on any of the articles you read in the quarterly, in the magazine website, and on the Tikkun Daily blog—our contact information is listed here.
While the volume of mail we get is too high to make it possible for us to respond to every communication we get, we do read everything, think about it, and in the case of people who identify themselves as current dues-paying members of NSP or subscribers to the magazine, we make an honest effort to respond!