Rabbi Sid Schwarz, Judaism and Justice: The Jewish Passion to Repair the World (Jewish Lights. 2006, p. 251)
Judaism has often fallen prey to the tendency, affecting all groups, to see itself in parochial terms, to believe that the interests of the group supersede all else. This is especially true in times of crisis. In modern times, this defensiveness extends to times when Israel is at risk, either from war, terrorism, or worldwide campaigns to discredit Zionism and the right of Jews to collective existence in their ancestral homeland. Still, the Jewish tradition's universal teachings about responsibility toward all human beings and to the entire world continue to bring us back to the needed equilibrium between self-interest...and the interests of humanity...Even when, or perhaps especially when, the Jewish world tends toward the parochial there are voices in our midst that call us back to our prophetic legacy to be agents for the repair of the entire world.

Suggested Discussion Questions:

1. In what way does the persistence of anti-Semitism in the world or the ongoing threats to the State of Israel’s survival hinder the Jewish people’s ability to fulfill the prophetic mandate to care for humanity, regardless of race, creed or religion?

2. How can we strike a balance between self-preservation and playing a role in universal redemption?

3. How does it feel to think that you have been called upon to assist the world in its ultimate redemption and perfection (tikkun)?

Time Period: Contemporary (The Yom Kippur War until the present-day)