Sabbath Practice as Political Resistance: Building the Religious Counterculture

One thing Abraham Joshua Heschel and Karl Marx had in common, aside from having both been spectacularly bearded Eastern European Jews, is the shared insight that time is the ultimate form of human wealth on this earth. Without time, all other forms of wealth are meaningless. It is this insight about time—patently obvious but frequently forgotten—that makes keeping a Sabbath day both spiritually profound and politically radical.

The Difference Between Holy and Nice: The Religious Counterculture

Polite. What could possibly be more antithetical to the heart of religion than the cool reserve of social propriety implied by that word? We’ve all seen it—the chilly, respectful friendliness; the ginger embrace that somehow reminds us of our separateness; the newcomers ignored at an Oneg Shabbat or coffee hour. We try to solve the problem through deputizing official badge-wearing “welcomers” or offering trainings in “hospitality” and, while some progress is sometimes made, the congregation is rarely transformed by these ex post facto measures into a community as religiously loving as the one described by Jasleen.

The Religious Counterculture

Actor Mayim Bialik needed to find a dress that covered her elbows, knees, and collarbone, was not too tight, and, of course, was absolutely gorgeous enough for the red carpet. She called the quest, “Operation Hot and Holy.”