February 22nd, 2007

Blu Greenberg

Re-reading books and Blu Greenberg

I mentioned in a previous post how much I appreciate Rabbi Telushkin's works. I've just started re-reading "A Code of Jewish Ethics"; the main reason is that it is so hard to improve and change one's personality that I believe I need to go back to Rabbi Telushkin's insights to make them part of my outlook on life and integrate them in how I deal with people.

I was going to write about the books I enjoy re-reading at least once a year. However when I thought of the first one I realised it deserved a post of its own. This book is How to Run a Traditional Jewish Household by Blu Greenberg. It deals with religious observance from a Modern Orthodox point of view.

It is certainly one of the most inspiring books I have ever read. I only discovered it three years ago but have read it more than three times. It reads like a novel and is thought-provoking at the same time. Blu Greenberg's approach is extremely sensitive. This is a great book to encourage people to be more observant and at the same time realise that it is possible.

Blu Greenberg is the co-founder and first president of JOFA, The Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance, and an outspoken woman on the position of women in Judaism.

I also have a special fondness for Blu Greenberg for a very personal reason. While I was reading How to Run a traditional Jewish Household, one of my brothers, aged 37, died in a car crash and I discovered that the Greenbergs (who are my parents' age) had also lost a son J.J who was hit by a car while riding a bicycle, he was also 37.

You can visit the website dedicated to the memory of J.J. Greenberg and created by his family and friends. It is a wonderful tribute to this young man and like another contributor on the site, it has encouraged me to donate organs and be more environmentally- friendly.