We are surrounded, every day, by noise. Pundits on the right. Pundits on the left. Ahhhh, it’s been an exhausting few years.
Our identity can become exclusively defined by our political views. If I’m conservative, then I think this about the world. If I’m liberal, then I think this about the world.
Granted, people don’t actually say these words out loud. Instead, we all, or so many of us, fall into a trap of thinking a certain way without realizing we’ve gotten so caught up in our own political bubbles, it’s hard to think clearly, about, well, anything.
But, let’s say there was a different way to think about life, a way that was not colored in red or blue, but driven by religious thought, or in the case of the Jewish tradition, by Judaism.
My name is Noam Weissman. Over the last few years, I kept thinking to myself, does Judaism have anything to say about my life? About the world around me? I am the head of content at OpenDor Media. I’ve been in Jewish education for over a decade. I’ve served as the principal of a Jewish high school. Heck, I wrote my dissertation on Israel education and identity development. All I think about is identity, and yet, AND YET, I could not help but wonder if Judaism has anything to say about MY life?
Many of us, or maybe I am just speaking personally here, are excellent compartmentalizers. Religion is for the synagogue, mosque or church, but not for the home, or the workplace, or the grocery store.
If that’s the case, though, what’s the point of it all?
In this new 10-episode podcast series, “The Power Of,” we’re going to explore how Judaism actually has so much to say about the world, about our daily lives. We’re going to see the relevance of Judaism in the words we speak, how we imagine love, what forgiveness should look like and what it shouldn’t, when we should sacrifice, how to have healthy disagreements, the keys to happiness, how to tackle questions of racism and empathy, what it really means to be successful, why charity yes, does matter, and how we dress does or doesn’t too.
This series was inspired by the late Rabbi Dr. Jonathan Sacks, of blessed memory. One of the core messages of his life was how Judaism could speak to every aspect of our lives, and we hope to honor his memory through this series.
We’re speaking to Moshe Halbertal, Israeli philosopher. We’re speaking to Mike Sweetney, former NBA basketball player and current college basketball coach. We’re speaking to my friend, my brother, my rabbi, Judah Mischel, about healthy disagreement. We’re speaking to the one and only Chloe Valdary about sacrifice.
Our guests are NOT performing. They are reflecting – about their real lives. And so am I. To be honest, I’m nervous. I don’t know you, but you’re gonna get to know me. Some of you may be devoted listeners to another podcast I host, Unpacking Israeli History, and some of you may be getting to know me now. And boy, will you get to know me.
By the end of this podcast, it is my hope that we can all see how the power and the brilliance of Jewish thought can help us all live enriched lives with meaning, purpose, and direction.
Thanks for joining me on this journey.
Subscribe to The Power Of wherever you get your podcasts, and you’ll automatically get our first episode when it drops soon. The Power Of is brought to you by Unpacked, a division of OpenDor Media.
Yalla, let’s do this.