High Hol­i­day Sutra

  • From the Publisher
September 29, 2017
Plan­ning a Yom Kip­pur ser­mon to impress a new con­gre­ga­tion and, he hopes, earn a new posi­tion, Rab­bi Jon­ah Grief begins a nar­ra­tive confession/​philosophical mem­oir, or sutra, rem­i­nis­cent of his Bud­dhist lean­ings. An uncon­ven­tion­al rab­bi who occa­sion­al­ly employs Bud­dhist med­i­ta­tion meth­ods, Jon­ah frankly describes his 1960s child­hood and ado­les­cence, his first mar­riage, his sec­ond wife’s death, and his mature expe­ri­ences try­ing to uphold Jew­ish moral­i­ty as he sees it in a 1990s world. Des­per­ate­ly search­ing to find” him­self and his own spir­i­tu­al­i­ty, Rab­bi Grief gains a new matu­ri­ty while grap­pling with some of life’s mys­ter­ies. Read­ers of Appel (Till the End of Time, Dou­ble­day, 1990) may even feel that they have grown along with this most unusu­al rab­bi as he unwit­ting­ly enter­tains us with his labo­ri­ous search to make Judaism rel­e­vant for him­self and his con­gre­ga­tion. Jew­ish read­ers may best appre­ci­ate this fine nov­el, but you cer­tain­ly don’t have to be Jew­ish to under­stand it.

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