(Miami, February 8, 2020) – Targum Shlishi contributed to the publication and on-line production of Mesorah Matrix, a 10 theme, 10 volume compilation of 200 original essays on Jewish thought and spirituality by 150 international leaders. This decade-long endeavor features collaboration across various streams of Judaism, sharing approaches that can inspire people of any faith. The material is available in various modalities: at no cost online, in hardcover at Amazon, in flip-book form, and on Kindle. It also includes twelve twenty-minute you tube videos on a dedicated channel.
A series for the 21st Century, Mesorah Matrix features the world’s top Jewish thinkers, spanning the spectrum of Judaism. A lead essay by chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks on the ethic of holiness sets the tone of seriousness and inspiration in volume one. Although most of the volumes are ready/published, new writers are invited to contribute submissions until the end of 2020, and works will be revised accordingly, in keeping with the editors’ commitment to recognizing new talent and democratizing access to Jewish texts and influence.
The themes are: Kedusha/Sanctification; Tikkun Olam/Repair and Perfect the world; Birkat Cohanim/Priestly Blessing; The Kaddish prayer; Modeh Ani/Gratitude; Havdalah; The search for meaning; Uvacharta Bachayim/ And thou shalt choose life; Ehyeh Asher Ehyeh/ I will be that which I will be; and the Sabbath.
The senior editorial board includes David Birnbaum, author of the Summa Metaphysica series, Martin S. Cohen, scholar and former editor of Conservative Judaism magazine, Benjamin Blech and Saul Berman, both authors, academics, scholars and lecturers, and Shalom Carmy, editor of Tradition magazine.
Chief editor David Birnbaum writes on the site, “The series has broken down barriers amongst denominations and served to unify the Jewish people. It has depth and breadth, scope and spectrum, unique across the 3500+ years of Jewish history. It can be used as a course of course study complete with a curriculum teaching guide and is a reference tool for clergy, academics and lay people of all ages.”
The work is motivated by the editors’ values which include: advancing young scholars; respecting tradition while combining it with the best of modern scholarship; supporting and enhancing Jewish studies programs; and assisting rabbis and educators to be vibrant and engaging teachers. Birnbaum says, “We endeavored to create a “Big Tent” so as to craft a work with contributions from across the talented Jewish landscape, while being alert to core sensitivities. As a by-product we hope we have contributed to greater unity (achduth) across the Jewish spectrum.”
Aryeh Rubin, director of Targum Shlishi, notes, “I read God and Evil in the early 90s, was duly impressed with the clarity of thought, and recognized the work then as a major contribution. Targum Shlishi is delighted to support Mesorah Matrix which gathered and by enhanced by outstanding editors. Truly a work deserving of support.”
David Birnbaum is a philosophical writer, historical chronicler and conceptual theorist. His first book, God and Evil (KTAV, 1988), is considered by many to be a breakthrough modern day classic in the field of theodicy. He is known globally in metaphysics circles as “the architect of Potentialism Theory”– a unified philosophy/cosmology/metaphysics which he unfolds in the Summa Metaphysica series (1988, 2005, 2014). Birnbaum has served on the faculty of the New School for Social Research in Manhattan. He conceptualized Mesorah Matrix and brought the project to fruition.
About Targum Shlishi
Targum Shlishi, a Raquel and Aryeh Rubin Foundation, is dedicated to providing a range of creative solutions to problems facing Jewry today. Premised on the conviction that dynamic change and adaptation have historically been crucial to a vibrant and relevant Judaism and to the survival of its people, Targum Shlishi’s initiatives are designed to stimulate the development of new ideas and innovative strategies that will enable Jewish life, its culture, and its traditions to continue to flourish. For more information on the foundation, visit its website. Follow Aryeh Rubin, Targum Shlishi’s director, on Twitter..