Saturday, June 14, 2014

Beyond the Tent: A Conversation on Identity & Responsibility

Some of my friends were undoubtedly on hand for this conversation in San Francisco last week.  Sitting at a cafe in the Galilee, watching it now, I'm struck by how important this kind of engagement is.  I'm especially grateful for the broad historical outline of the first fifteen minutes: the evolving sense of the relationship between American Jews and Zionism/Israel.  David Myers so eloquently reminds us of the diversity, from the very beginning, among Jews on questions related to Zionism and Israel and its place in Jewish life.

It seems to me that the conversation (and its central question) have to be expanded and soon.  The central question (not just for American Jews, really, but for all of us) is: "WHAT IS OUR RESPONSIBILITY TO THE WORLD?"  I'm so moved by my Jewish friends who insist that the most Jewish question of all is just this.  

What is our responsibility for the other?  How will we participating in healing the whole?  What is our responsibility to the peoples (plural) of the world?  How will we utilize our moral-political-economic power to the good--so that free and democratic peoples have a chance to live in peace?