Sloganeering, Greatness and the Judiciary

dahls

Just reblogging this back up here, as yet another judge in another country is attacked for violating democracy…let’s not forget the crass, undermining of an independent judiciary (to which every citizen is answerable and through which we all have access to the protection of our basic rights) is not something strange to the UK in the last 12 months:

See my sermon on sloganeering here.

“We do not exist to be great, to have big towers emblazoned with our name on them. That is about as meaningless a slogan as may be possible to entertain…then becomes the ends. Civil society (or even uncivil society) and the nation state and the institutions of democracy do not exist for their own sake. They are the best mechanism so far devised to achieve the vision, which I think everyone of us would share:

“The vision of prosperity, safety and security, respect for difference, protection of minorities, embrace of cultural interaction and international cooperation, the rule of law. A vision of peace.”

Prelude to Hope

dahls

In memory of my great grandfather, Dr Alfred Dahlsheimer z’l,

In my sermon at Rosh Hashanah I presented the thought that human endeavour and the expression of human goodness and progress is an essential quality of humanity. In Judaism, the view of humanity is not naïve to the brutality that human beings are able to inflict on one another. Nor does Judaism regard an optimum expression of self to be one of total altruism. Self interest is an important part of being human and the drive for self-preservation and protection must be recognised. At the same time, we are not born into sin, we are endowed with potential. The potential is always in the balance – that really is the point of the penitential period: if you are not blessed with the ability to choose blessing or curse, good or evil, how can the idea of repentance and atonement mean…

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