The ESP of the
Jewish Way of Life
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I am so glad you discovered our website!
Much of the information you will see on this
site is a result of my work. So you
deserve to know "who is this guy
I am a former
journalist and then entrepreneur and now I use both of those
careers to help people understand their Judaism. I say that I
do 2 things: I am a Jewish baggage handler...as I listen to
people share their Jewish baggage. Secondly, I am in sales
and marketing for Judaism, Inc. I make no money from any of
these efforts as they are truly a labor of love.
In addition to writing my books and my
column, I published Being Jewish Magazine for six years. (that
peaked at a circulation of over 100,000 homes.) I lecture often...having spoken in
over 70 communities. I also volunteer a lot in my own community
mostly in Jewish organizations, but I have also coached Little
League Baseball and Kid's soccer.
Although my 10 year daughter once described me as some kind of "rabbi
dude, " I am not a rabbi. My personal level of observance --
like keeping kosher -- has varied greatly throughout my life and
continues to go up and down. What has remained constant is that
being Jewish has always been important to me. Since I was a child,
I have almost instinctively been proud to be Jewish -- though until
recently, I couldn't clearly articulate why. Now I can, because as
an adult, I have devoted much time and effort to learning about
Judaism, including three years of intensive Jewish study in a
program known as the Wexner Heritage Foundation.
I grew up in a non-Jewish suburb in the Midwest. I attended public
schools that were predominantly gentile. In my high school class of
700-something, there were about a dozen Jewish students. My
parents' home was not kosher or particularly religious, but we all
knew we were Jewish. The two main reasons were my parents. My Mom
was a Hebrew school teacher and my Dad was an Israeli (a very
secular one). All the reminding we needed that we were Jewish was
hearing my mother and father speaking in Hebrew when they did not
want us to understand what they were talking about -- which was
In addition to the Hebrew spoken by my parents, as I grew up, I was
exposed to a lot of Judaism. I visited Israel regularly, attended
Jewish camps as both a camper and a counselor, and was a teacher
for many years at my synagogue.
I should point out that just because my Mom taught Hebrew did not
mean I behaved better at Hebrew school than anyone else. In fact, I
got into more trouble than my friends. I attended afternoon Hebrew
school all the way through high school -- my Mom made me. Unlike my
friends, when I was rowdy (a daily occurrence), after throwing me
out of class, my teachers just went down the hall to complain to my
The net result of this upbringing was that my attraction to Judaism
was strong enough that while in college, I actually gave thought to
attending rabbinical school. But I decided not to for numerous
reasons -- not the least of which was that I did not like services!
(I didn't think they would let me go through six years of
rabbinical school and skip all the services.)
Instead, I majored in political science and broadcast journalism.
My career began in TV news and eventually evolved into business. In
1983, my wife and I started a company producing computer training
video courses that we marketed nationally to Fortune 500 companies
Marketing has been the aspect of business that has interested me
most because I have been intrigued by customers' behavior. I like
to know what they are "really" thinking and why. My
experience has been that if you ask, they will frankly tell you.
In recent years, as I have sought answers to my many questions
about Judaism, I have come to see that the product is excellent but sales haven't been so hot. Consequently, as part of my personal
investigation of Judaism, I also became curious to know what other
Jews think of Judaism. So I asked. And continue to ask.
The result is my work which now appears in print, online and when I
If you are interested in sending me your Jewish story or question
or would like to inquire about having me lecture, please email me:
I hope you enjoy BeingJewish.org
and will direct others here. If you have suggestions or ideas
that can make our site better or you just feel like sending us a
comment, please click on the email box on the lower left!
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