Blog: Rabbi Farkas

Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on October 4, 2018

Last Sunday we launched our mental health initiative called “So Healthy Together.” Over two hundred people came from all over the city to share their stories and learn from experts.  What I learned from our launch was that community is the most important aspect to helping prevent tragic loss like suicide to mental illness and to help survivors heal.  The world is a lonely place and is only getting lonelier.

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Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on September 20, 2018

For the past ten years I have lead a physician's talmud study group called Dinner for Docs. We meet about once a quarter, have some wine and eat a nice dinner. Then we engage in Talmud study. It was there that I really got to know Dr. Joe Beezy. He’s sitting right over there. Joe and I became friends over a page of Talmud, so much so that he asked me to perform the marriage of his daughter, Talya, to wonderful man named Leonard. Talya, it was such a beautiful day, warm and verdant, your dad played the recorder, remember? It was on that day I met your brother this dashing young man with a huge smile, named Ben.

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Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on September 12, 2018

It was once said that Judaism is a tradition of minimum text and maximal interpretation.  Take these three words from the book of Leviticus “V'ahavtah l'rechah kamocha” Love your neighbor as yourself. (Lev. 19:18).  How clear can that be? How straight forward? How simple, how universal?  “V'ahavtah l'rechah kamocha” Love your neighbor as yourself.

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Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on August 28, 2018

How literal is faith? The other night I was at a shiva minyan and I was asked by one of the family members how could one pray for miracles that don’t not exist? I took a deep breath, knowing that others wanted to speak to me and said that I don’t believe in the supernatural like turning water into blood or splitting the sea, and I’m not sure that God really exists. But my faith and the language of faith is not so literal. The God I believe in is a poem, not an essay. Let me explain.

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Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on June 13, 2018

Invocation for Assembly Member Jesse Gabriel
June 11, 2018

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Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on June 7, 2018

At the end of this week’s Torah portion, Shlach, we find one of the most famous paragraphs of liturgy:

“God spoke to Moses, telling him to speak to the Israelites and instruct them to make for themselves fringes on the corners of their garments for all generations. Let them attach a cord of blue to the fringe at each corner. That shall be your fringe: look at it and recall all the commandments of the Lord and observe them...”

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Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on May 10, 2018

As we close out the book of Leviticus, the third book of the Torah, we can take a moment to reflect on its central theme - holiness. No other book in the Torah focuses as much on the idea of becoming holy as this priestley book. The reason d'etre of being an Israelite is found in the pasuk, “You shall be holy because I, the LORD am Holy” (Lev.19:2)

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Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on May 3, 2018

Invocation at the National Day of Prayer
May 3, 2018

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Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on May 3, 2018

Today is Lag B’Omer the thirty-third day of the great ingathering of the barley harvest. Today we stand between Exodus and Sinai we mark our pathway between the splitting of sea and the holy mountain.  We celebrate by lighting bonfires, but I asked the mayor if I could light one here in this tent. He said, “No” But,  as we in our tradition light up the world we come here this morning to do the same. And so good morning to all of you.

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Posted by Rabbi Noah Farkas on February 8, 2018

“What is that?” I asked Karen our tour guide,  “That person is called a Brocha!” she said.  “That’s a crazy job!”

Staring out my bus window in the middle of Guatemala I could hardly comprehend the scene playing out before me.  We were moving in traffic at 40 miles an hour or so and off to the side was a bus very different than our travel coach, slowing to near stop on the side of the road.  Except, where our nicely appointed tour bus was tall with plush seats, I was staring at a converted school bus, not unlike the ones I used to take to school as a child.  This school bus, which might have ferried school children in the U.S. some years ago was now painted over in wild colors.

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