Archive for category: Lectures and Sermons

When Life Doesn’t Turn Out the Way You Expected

28 Jul
July 28, 2014

In a “Frank and Ernest” cartoon, you see Frank rousing slowly from his sleep, then looking out at the sun coming up. He says dryly, “Well, the sun is rising in the east . . . so far, so good.” There is a beautiful story back in the book of Genesis. Abraham is complaining to […]

What Jews Should Know about Islam

21 Jul
July 21, 2014

Did you hear the one about the young man who was caught carrying a bomb on an airplane? When arrested, he claimed that he always carried a bomb with him on airplanes. After all, he said, what are the odds against there ever being two bombs on the same plane?

Raising Ethical Children

14 Jul
July 14, 2014

I read this story in Reader’s Digest once about a guy who was camping in a national forest and in the morning as he stood in the communal bathroom washing up, the man next to him asked him what he did for a living. “I’m a Juvenile Rehabilitation Counselor,” he replied. At which point the […]

Peace From The Ground Up

07 Jul
July 7, 2014

A friend of mine tells the story about how one cold, wet, winter day he was late leaving home for work. There was a knock on his front door and there standing in the cold and rain stood two Jehovah’s Witnesses. Of course usually when that happened he just told them “No thanks I’m Jewish” […]

My Cat Had A Better Death Than My Grandfather

01 Jul
July 1, 2014

I once heard someone describe the difference between a dog and a cat like this: You love your dog so you take care of it and feed it and give it treats. So your dog is grateful and it looks up at you and thinks to itself, “You must be God.” You love your cat […]

The Mitzvah Of A Sustainable Life

28 Jun
June 28, 2014

There was once a powerful Japanese emperor who needed a new chief samurai. So he sent out a challenge throughout the land that he was searching for the best samurai in all the known world. When a full year had passed only three people had accepted the emperor’s challenge and came before him to win […]

What Would Jesus Do?

21 Jun
June 21, 2014

One of the local ministers in the Palisades is a dear friend of mine. Once when we were sharing computer frustrations he told me this story about Jesus and Satan and how one day they are having a “friendly discussion” as to which one of them would make a better computer programmer. This goes on […]

Judaism, Business and Ethics

14 Jun
June 14, 2014

I was told the story of a woman my age who decided to introduce her mother to the magic of the internet. Her first move was to show her mom the popular “” site. To impress her she told her that it could answer any question she had.

Mi Po Ani Lo Zaz – From Here I Am Not Moving

07 Jun
June 7, 2014

When Chaim Weizman, the modern founder of Zionism was once asked, “Why don’t you just accept the offer to establish a Jewish state in Uganda ?” He said, “That’s like me asking why you drove 50 miles to see your mother when there are so many other nice old ladies so much closer.” We drive […]

The Curse of Blessings

01 Jun
June 1, 2014

“Once upon a time…” Just hearing the words our minds begin to soar – to far off places, distant galaxies, or childhood dreams. “Once upon a time…” – we hear the words and a shiver of anticipation runs down our spines, knowing that with a good story anything is possible. “Once upon a time…, Once […]

EGO – Everyone’s Greatest Obstacle

28 May
May 28, 2014

EGO – Everyone’s Greatest Obstacle by Rabbi Steven Carr Reuben, Ph.D. Kol Nidre 5767/2006 The great comedian Milton Berle used to have a host of one-liners about ego’s and egotists. He’d say, “Put two egotists together and you’ve got a case of an I for an I.” 0r my favorite, “He’s always me-deep in conversation!” […]

Bowling Alone

21 May
May 21, 2014

Yom Kippur Day 5767/2006 Rabbi Steven Carr Reuben, Ph.D. Kehillat IsraelReconstructionist Congregation A young woman named Sally was driving home from a business trip in Northern Arizona. She saw an elderly Navajo woman walking by the side of the road so she stopped the car and asked if she’d like a ride. With a silent […]

There But For The Grace Of God

14 May
May 14, 2014

Gerda Klein, the Holocaust survivor won an Emmy and an Oscar for a film about her experiences in the Shoah. She was once asked, “How did it feel for you as a holocaust survivor to be holding an Oscar in your hand?”

To Stand In Awe Of Our Blessings

07 May
May 7, 2014

Last Friday as I came into the synagogue to prepare for Shabbat services, our Hazzan Sheni Beth was standing in the foyer with her husband, Ira and their 4 year old son, Jonah. Beth turned to Jonah and said, “Say Shabbat Shalom to the Rabbi, Jonah.” He looked up at me with that 4 year […]

Feeling Safe In An Unsafe World

01 May
May 1, 2014

A guy gets a Labrador and he can’t wait to show him off to his neighbor. So when the neighbor comes over, the guy calls the dog into the house, bragging about how smart the little guy is and how incredibly trained he is. “Wait till you see this!” he says to his neighbor. The […]