David Shneyer Writings

Is A Terrible Spiritual Malaise Afflicting Our Country?

There is a terrible spiritual malaise afflicting our country. News of racism, gun violence, and human suffering is increasing. This is a spring of great struggle and, also, one of great opportunity. The Parsha, Tazria Metzorah, addresses the importance of mindfulness and healing after childbirth. Later, we learn how the […]

A Month of Renewal and Hopefulness

The month of Nisan is, traditionally, a month of renewal and hopefulness. In many Jewish communities it was the custom to not recite the usual Tachanun or supplication liturgy during this time. With this is mind I chose last week to plant a pear tree at Sanctuary to complete our […]

Creating Conscious Community

Are we ready for Pesach? Our Festivals of Freedom and Spring are fast approaching. Some of us are feeling the need to do some prep. One age old tradition is in the form of a spring cleaning, especially to rid our homes of Chametzdike products. We can also put our […]

Between Purim and Pesach A New Month

With spring around the corner, crocuses and daffodils peeking through, hope is in the air. We can also breathe a little more easily, with a million of others, with the passage of the COVID Relief Stimulus Bill. In Jewish time we are between Purim and Pesach. This weekend we offer […]

Purim in Our World Today

Did you hear the news?! The Israeli government and the PA have agreed to the terms for creating a Palestinian state! Check out the Washington Toast tomorrow morning! Since last Purim, the last time we were together as a community and the anniversary of social isolation, Purim has taken on […]

Parsha Terumah – Creating an Indwelling

Another great Parsha! Called Terumah, it’s about creating The Mishkan, the Tabernacle, the indwelling space for the Divine Presence. This Parsha is a radical departure from the previous sedrah which outlines in detail the social covenant within the community. This is the first time that the people are building a […]

Modern Miriam – Flory Jagoda

This past Shabbat, known as Shabbat Shira, we learned of the death of Flory Jagoda, a modern-day Miriam who lead her people in song for decades. She was 97. Here are some of the words I spoke at her funeral this past Monday morning at King David Cemetery: “I don’t […]

A Spirit of Renewal

Tu Bishvat is coming! The New Year of the Trees! What fabulous timing! A week after reflections on the vision of MLK Jr and the Inauguration of President Biden and Vice President Harris, we can feel the spirit of renewal. Just as Tu Bishvat celebrates the rising sap in the […]

A Convergence of Secular and Torah Realms

We very much appreciate our members, friends and readers. May this coming year be a blessed one for us all. How perfect for the secular year to end with Parshat VaY’khi, the final sedrah in the Book of Genesis. I see a convergence of the secular and Torah realms. Jacob, […]