Archive | Kamin_Ben_Rabbi

A New Year’s rite away from the tumult

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — Politics.  Brutality.  Greed.   Incompetence.  Uncertainty.  At Rosh Hashanah, my people, a diverse and complex group, finds common comfort, sanctuary, and healing in one another. In other denominations, confession is a personal event, often realized between the confessor and a priestly intermediary. The cleric is charged with admonition but also […]

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Posted in Jewish Religion, Kamin_Ben_Rabbi

He taught me about what love really is

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — Hardly anyone we watch in the current national drama appears authentic or worthy of our recollections.  We have to look elsewhere for genuine moments of human intimacy that are devoid of histrionics or “fake news.” I have found in these bizarre times—and maybe you have as well—that I […]

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Posted in Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, Travel, Cuisine, & Miscellaneous

Be a drum major for justice

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — When I think of America, I see myself back in 1968—fifteen years old and in the regalia of the Woodward High School Marching Band.  I played clarinet and performed, to my cosmic joy, as the occasional Assistant Drum Major.  In February, the month in which the above photo […]

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Posted in Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, USA

Loving Israel 50 years after the Six Day War

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — Unbelievably, June 5 is the 50th anniversary of Israel’s lightning victory over the gathered Arab nations in the Six Day War of June 5-11, 1967.  The Jewish state paid a heavy price to survive; the rest of us need to pay tribute. When we were children  living there some […]

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Posted in Jewish History, Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, Middle East

JFK would be 100 on May 29

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California – “God’s work on earth must truly be our own,” he declared in those thick Bostonian tones at the close of his renowned Inaugural Address on the bitter cold morning of January 20, 1961.  A flawed man with impeccable charm and poise, a legend larger than himself, he remains the […]

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Posted in Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, Obituaries & memorials, USA

Cineplex not nearly so wondrous as our yesterdays

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — These are the springtime festival days of Israel—Holocaust Remembrance Day last week, Israel Independence Day today, Jerusalem Day soon. I remember when, several years ago, it was reported in the international media that a huge, luxury Cineplex was being constructed in the suburban Israeli community of Kfar-Saba.  I retain […]

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Posted in Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, Middle East, Travel, Cuisine, & Miscellaneous

My departed father still leads the seder

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — I remember: only weeks after my father died in 1976, our family convened at the house for the annual Seder—the festive banquet of Passover.   My father had always proudly led and meticulously directed the ceremonial meal, holding, reading, and chanting from the Haggadah –the book of blessings and […]

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Posted in Jewish Religion, Kamin_Ben_Rabbi

King taught what in life was worthy to remember

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — Martin Luther King Jr. was assassinated 49 years ago today, April 4, 1968, in Memphis, Tenn.  He was standing on the balcony just outside Room 306 of the Lorraine Motel.  It was 6:01 PM and he had just leaned over the railing and was speaking to a gospel […]

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Posted in Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, USA

“Yes, call me a Jew”

Historic Jewish cemetery in Philadelphia vandalized This new wave of anti-Semitism, delivered via bomb threats, cemetery vandalisms, swastika desecrations, and specific acts of violence, reawakens an old and bittersweet mantra in every Jewish soul: we are as vulnerable as we are enduring. I remember: somebody once wrote me a nasty letter after something I circulated […]

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Posted in Jewish History, Jewish Religion, Kamin_Ben_Rabbi

And I saw the fear in her eyes

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — A few days ago, I visited with a family that I very much like.  They happen to hail from Mexico and have two kind and winning young children who were born and are being raised in the United States.  The children speak fluent English; they look and sound […]

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Posted in International, Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, USA

Trump is an aberration in America’s story

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — This past Saturday, millions of Americans marched in concert together in civil disobedience and out of the most fervent patriotism there is—love.  I had the opportunity to participate in the Women’s March that filled the downtown streets, sidewalks, and storefronts of Los Angeles.  It was gratifying, cleansing, and […]

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Posted in Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, USA

MLK was a real man with blemishes

By Rabbi Ben Kamin HARLEM, New York–Martin Luther King Jr. would have been 88 years old today, Sunday, January 15. As a pastor’s son growing up in the “Sweet Auburn” section of central Atlanta, pranking his friends and mimicking preachers with wicked accuracy, he’d had never dreamed that the day of his birth would be […]

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Posted in Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, USA

U.S. betrayed Israel, its one true Mideast friend

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — Great heat has been generated by the recent American decision to abstain at the UN Security Council on Israel’s settlements in the West Bank (or Judea and Samaria, as some of us Jews call the area). I have strong mixed feelings about the matter except in one category: […]

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Posted in Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, Middle East, USA

Seeing Christmas through Jewish eyes

By Rabbi Ben Kamin OCEANSIDE, California — Even if we don’t theologically celebrate Christmas, we in the Jewish community honor and venerate the true meaning and implication of this national holiday season. This year, there is a complete calendar intertwining; the first light of Hanukkah will be lit on Christmas Eve. Though the December holiday […]

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Posted in Kamin_Ben_Rabbi, USA

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