Conversations with Jewish Thought Leaders
Dov Lipman, Former Knesset Member
Dov Lipman is a former Knesset member from the Yesh Atid party. He was the first American immigrant to be elected to the Knesset in 30 years. He became well known in Israel for his role in combating religious extremism in Beit Shemesh. Dov is an author of seven books about Zionism, Judaism and Israel and a sought after international speaker.
I sat down with Dov at his home in Beit Shemesh to discuss the Israeli-American Jewish relationship, the integration of Haredim in Israel, the liberal movements and the Kotel, why the state of Israel should matter to American Jews, dismantling the Rabbanut, the Jewish religious authority in the state of Israel and much more.
This episode is also available at https://soundcloud.com/jewishpeopleideas/dov-lipman
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Also, please check out my other podcast, The Chassidic Story Project, where I share a new chassidic story every week, available at https://hasidicstory.com.
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Shmuel Rosner is a senior fellow at The Jewish People Policy Institute, a contributing opinion writer for The New York Times, the Senior Political Editor for the Jewish Journal, a columnist for Israel’s Maariv, and the chief non-fiction editor for Israel’s largest Publishing House, Kinneret-Zmora-Dvir.
He was previously a columnist for The Jerusalem Post and Chief U.S. Correspondent and Head of the News Division and Head of the Features Division for the Israeli daily Haaretz. He has been published in many magazines, including Foreign Policy, Commentary, The New Republic, The Jewish Review of Books, and more.
I visited Shmuel on a hot summer day in his Tel Aviv home. We discussed his new book Israeli Judaism, are Israeli Jews becoming more religious or secular, American Israeli Jewish relations, the Reform movement in Israel and much more.
Einat Wilf is the co-author of the Israeli best selling book, The War of Return: How Western Indulgence of the Palestinian Dream Has Obstructed the Path to Peace. She is a leading intellectual and original thinker on matters of foreign policy, economics, education, Israel and Zionism. She was a member of the Israeli Parliament from 2010-2013, where she served as Chair of the Education Committee and Member of the influential Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee. She is considered one of Israel’s most articulate representatives on the international stage.
I got on the train from Jerusalem to Tel Aviv to have a conversation with Einat in her apartment. We spoke about her book, the Palestinians, American Jewish-Israeli relations, the Kotel, nationalism, Zionism, feminism, atheism and much more.
Rabbi Eric Yoffie served as the President of the Union for Reform Judaism, the congregational arm of the Reform Movement in North America from 1996 to 2012. Yoffie received his rabbinical ordination from the Hebrew Union College in 1974 and served in many high-level roles until being elected the President of the Union for Reform Judaism.
This was a remote interview with Eric in New Jersey and me in Jerusalem. We spoke about what Judaism expects of a Reform Jew, the Kotel, conversions, Chabad, the Palestinians and much more.
You can find all of the episodes of this podcast and the different places it can be listened at by going to jewishpeopleideas.com. Find Barak’s books on Amazon by searching for “Barak Hullman” or going to https://bit.ly/barakhullman. Become a supporter of this podcast by going to http://patreon.com/barakhullman.
Mimi Feigelson—also known as Reb Mimi—is the Mashpiah Ruchanit—Spiritual Mentor—of the Schechter Rabbinical School in Jerusalem where she also teaches Talmud and Chassidic Thought. She served in the same position for 16 years at the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies in Los Angeles.
Born in the United States, Mimi moved to Israel at age 8 and began studying with Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach at 15.
In 1994, She was ordained by Rabbi Carlebach. In a secret ceremony, she became the first Orthodox Female Rabbi post Shoah. This was only made public in 2001. Still, 20 years later, the Orthodox Jewish community is challenged when it confronts the growing number of female Orthodox rabbis.
She was also the Associate Director of the popular Yakar synagogue and Beit Midrash in Jerusalem and it’s Rosh Beit Midrash l’nashim – the women’s beit midrash.
I sat down with Mimi in her apartment in Jerusalem to discuss her experience as a spiritual mentor for American and Israeli Jews, what it’s like to be the public figure “Reb Mimi”, her time with Reb Shlomo Carlebach, and many deep answers to simple questions.
Daniel Gordis is Senior Vice President and the Koret Distinguished Fellow at Shalem College. The author of more than ten books, Gordis is a columnist for Bloomberg Opinion and writes regularly for the Jerusalem Post. Gordis’ history of the State of Israel, entitled Israel: A Concise History of a Nation Reborn, received the 2016 National Jewish Book Award as “Book of the Year.”
Gordis’ writing has appeared in magazines and newspapers including the New York Times, The New Republic, the New York Times Magazine, Azure, Commentary Magazine and Foreign Affairs, and his books have received numerous awards.
Professor Alan Dershowitz has called Gordis “one of Israel’s most thoughtful observers.”
I sat down with Danny in his office at Shalem College in Jerusalem. We spoke about his newest book We Stand Divided: The Rift Between American Jews and Israel, what’s causing the tension between some part of the American Jewish community and the state of Israel and what can be done about it.
Very Special Podcast
Thank you for this very special podcast. It takes many skills to be a good interviewer: interjecting questions and comments without overpowering the guest is the most difficult of all. The episodes I've heard meet the criteria wonderfully. Kol ha'kavod. Plus, Barak asks the questions I want asked.
I love these conversations
The guests are fascinating and Barak is an amazing listener and interviewer. He asks questions in a respectful way but pushing the guests to bring out a truthful, honest and exciting conversation.
I really enjoy this podcast
I find the conversations fascinating and informative. The quality is great. This is really something special.