Episode 19: Celebrating Freedom and Passover w/Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz

Episode 19: Celebrating Freedom and Passover w/Rabbi Shmuly Yanklowitz

“Imagine if someone came to you and offered to give you $86,400 every day for the rest of your life. The only condition is that you had to spend every penny each day and that you wouldn’t be able to save a dime. This is what God has given us: 86,400 seconds each day, not one of which can be recovered. Each moment counts.”
— Rabbi Dr. Shmuly Yanklowitz, Pirkei Avot: A Social Justice Commentary

Rabbi Dr. Shmuly Yanklowitz is the President & Dean of the Valley Beit Midrash (Jewish pluralistic adult learning & leadership), the Founder & President of Uri L’Tzedek (Jewish Social Justice), the Founder and CEO of The Shamayim Institute (Jewish animal advocacy), the Founder and President of YATOM, (Jewish foster and adoption network), and the author of sixteen books on Jewish ethicsNewsweek named Rav Shmuly one of the top 50 rabbis in America and the Forward named him one of the 50 most influential Jews.

We began our conversation by discussing the urgent situation on the southern American border. As migrant children that are fleeing violence are being placed in cages and are separated from their families, concerned Americans from all walks of life are stepping up to do something about it. Rabbi Shmuly says that the question he gets asked most often about his work on behalf of alleviating the suffering of migrants is: “how can I help.. how can I join” in the struggle to liberate those that are confined? As Mister Rogers famously said: during times of distress look for those that are helping. You are never alone in the work of Tikkun Olam - of making the world a better place.

Rabbi Shmuly meeting other activists working to provide sanctuary and refuge for migrants.

Rabbi Shmuly meeting other activists working to provide sanctuary and refuge for migrants.

We also discussed the decline in the conditions faced by those in the American prison system. Rabbi Shmuly has been working on behalf of criminal justice reform for over a decade. You can see the passion and drive that Rabbi Shmuly has for creating a more just and peaceful world in the PBS documentary entitled “The Calling” below.

For some of the books written by Rabbi Shmuly, be sure to check out:


Let us ask ourselves: What am I enslaved to? How do I contribute to the enslavement of others?

Reflect below!

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