Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Sin: What A Concept

David Brooks on a Washington, D.C.-area Torah teacher who's transfixing adult education classes by stressing values, accountability, and consequences:

[Erica] Brown seems to poke people with concepts that sit uncomfortably with the modern mind-set — submission and sin. She writes about disorienting situations: vengeance, scandal, group shame. During our coffee, she criticized the way some observers bury moral teaching under legal casuistry and the way some moderns try to explain away the unfashionable things the Torah clearly says.

She pushes the highly successful. No, serving the poor for a few days a year isn’t enough. Yes, it is necessary to expose a friend’s adultery because his marriage is more important than your friendship.

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