Two Astronauts and Two Kinds of Jewish Sacred Time

The Sabbath represents God’s decision to rest on the seventh day after creating the world; it therefore exists outside of history, Judaism’s other holy days, for their part, are rooted in the experiences of the Jewish people. Meir Soloveichik compares these two conceptions of sacred time by comparing two astronauts: Gene Cernan, the last man to walk on the moon—the celestial body that determines the Jewish calendar, and that the ancient rabbis compared with the people of Israel—and Ilan Ramon, who famously celebrated Shabbat in outer space. (Video, 21 minutes.)

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Read more at TIk

More about: Ilan Ramon, Jewish holidays, Judaism, Moon, Religion & Holidays, Shabbat, Space exploration

Benny Gantz Should Be Praised for Compromising, Not Condemned for Capitulating

March 30 2020

After three inconclusive elections in a year’s time, Israel’s political stalemate seemed to come to an end last week when the leaders of the two largest parties—Benny Gantz and Benjamin Netanyahu—agreed to form a governing coalition together with some of the smaller parties. According to the deal, Netanyahu will serve as prime minister for eighteen months, after which he will be succeeded by Gantz. This compromise, paradoxically, has led to the breakup of Gantz’s Blue and White party, as two of its three constituent factions have refused to join the unity government. Their leaders have denounced Gantz for supposedly crumbling before Netanyahu, but Jonathan Tobin argues that he has acted bravely:

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Read more at JNS

More about: Benjamin Netanyahu, Benny Gantz, Israeli politics, Moshe Yaalon, Yair Lapid