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Are 'parents'--mothers and/or fathers-- qualified and deserving of authority/power over children? Is a 'parent' a natural expert? What's best for kids? Should judge/courts decide? In cases of divorce/ orphanage? ID: + 
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In a place where there's 'no man'- be 'the man' -Moses sees no man, kills the Egyptian, takes responsibility MP: + 
Or is the best doctor/medicine based on bedside manner or other holistic factors? Acupuncture is effective even if not understood. SW: + 
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Brain surgery requires the best trained neurosurgeon: nobody else can do it: Not everyone can know everything: SW: + 
However we over-relied on financial 'expertise' and it hurt us. Financial 'experts' didn't understand, predict, plan for, or protect all of us from the subprime and derivatives crashes--and they even helped create the mess. Nobels in Economics are given to such impressive-sounding charlatans. They fail to truly understand
platonic ideal forms over reality chaos.
MM: + 
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Contributors:
JF:Jason Farber, BE:Betzalel Edwards, MP:Meir Simcha Pantzur, ID:Irene Diamond, GG:Gershon Gottlieb
Do the 'experts' in each field of human endeavor know what they're talking about? Does expertise deserve the respect, money, attention, power that societies give it?
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It is very dangerous to give respect to a person for their expertise or position alone. JF: + 
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It's dangerous always relying on previous knowledge, need constant re-evaluation. Answers always change: The Sword at entrance to Garden of Eden [back towards the safety of not needing to know...] is always moving. BE: + 
Knowledge vs. Wisdom. There's an idea that the Torah was written in Black fire vs. White fire; society doesn't value the white/ space/ less defined.  GG: + 
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How to Read and Use The New Jerusalem Talmud

New Jerusalem Talmud pages are organized/ laid out as 'Dafs', or pages in a unique format guided by the structure of the ancient Jewish Talmud.

  • The middle column at the top starts with a list of the participants/ contributors ('Tanaim').
  • Then, near the top of the middle column in the biggest font, is the "Mishnah": a concise statement of the issue, problem, or controversy.
  • Below that is the "Gemara" or main discussion: distilled, brief phrases encapsulating the most outstanding points and central flow of the discussion.
    • This is not a simple article, summary, or standard text debate; rather, it is something that is probably new to you. The phrases have been chosen, through a lengthy editorial process, to be the essential bones of a deeper exploration of the issue. They require 'learning' rather than just reading: an engaged, often difficult, and ideally partnered ('hevruta') approach: two people sit with the 'daf' in front of them and attempt to understand why each piece was included, and to respond and reflect what they read. The discussion as printed is designed to be incomplete: it requires your participation, through this process of 'learning', to be fully fleshed out, hopefully in a way which provokes you as ''talmidim" to bring your own insights and depth to the issue.
  • To each side are columns- the second and fourth columns- in a slightly smaller font than the middle column.
    • These are 'Rashis' or background/ support/ documentation/ context.
    • They are loosely thematic, filled with the most salient side points, data, or well-established positions relating to the central topic.
    • There are often links to sources on the different sides or perspectives.
    • These can be essential to the discussion, yet are usually not 'chidushim' (original to this debate):
      • rather they are things-you-should-know to really grasp the full contextuality of the main discussion.
  • On the far right and far left are smaller columns with smaller font.
  • These are the 'tosefot' or tangents:
    • interesting and relevant side points,
    • directions for further exploration,
    • anecdotes,
    • and sources or noted thinkers or scholars whose work touches upon the main issue.
  • Once you have registered and logged in, you can join the discussion!
    • Click on 'add a comment to the discussion' in the central column if you want to respond directly to the main issue.
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    • Your comment will be moderated by our editorial staff and should appear shortly.
    • Rather than simply go down indefinitely in one text column like most blogs, your comment will appear where it is most relevant.

One 'learns' a 'daf' of the New Jerusalem Talmud by sitting down and facing the issue, with the page in front of you and a learning partner across from you.

  • The goal is to get beyond the simple polarizations and platitudes that so often define and limit our relationship with major issues.
  • Any real engagement with a major controversy requires nuance, context, and depth; if it was so simple, there would not be a debate at all.
  • There may be more than two sides.
  • There may be several levels of a controversy, levels of understanding it, levels of its impact on individuals, societies, and the planet.
  • Even when one side is outright WRONG about something, the simple fact that they exist necessitates an attempt to understand their perspective and priorities, in order to have a hope for conversation, communication, or accomodation or compromise (or better, ultimately: consensus).

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