- About Us
- Spiritual Life
- Life-long Learning
- Social Justice
- TBS Foundation
Rabbi Neil speaks about Political Triage in 2017
triage sermon.pdf (1.57 MB)
Rabbi Neil speaks about Living in Fear
Shelach Lecha Sermon 2016 - Living in Fear.pdf (27.38 KB)
Rabbi Neil speaks about fear of the Other
The Cushite and Us Sermon.pdf (298.23 KB)
Rabbi Neil addresses rational and irrational fears and how we face them.
Climate of Fear Sermon.pdf (52.7 KB)
Rabbi Neil asks whether or not God is a fact.
Is God a Fact sermon.pdf (49.49 KB)
Purim is the time for fun! Enjoy this silly sermon that was followed by the even-sillier family-friendly Purim evening on Wednesday, March 23: potluck, the Megillah reading, Purim spiel and hamantasch extravaganza!
Rabbi Neil’s Not Entirely Serious Purim Sermon 5776 (2016) (PDF)
Rabbi Neil discussed his understanding of faith in Islam and Christianity and uses that as a basis to compare ethical practices and mizvot in Judaism.
For a religious leader to question a person’s faith is apparently disgraceful. As a religious leader, I had to address this because I think it addresses a core issue of faith communities today.
Rabbi Neil commented about the growth of anti-intellectualism.
... there exists an open strain of anti-intellectualism in this country that is, unfortunately, growing stronger.
Rabbi Neil talked about Judaism and Star Wars.
From childhood, two major forces shaped my life – Judaism and Star Wars. Both became integral to my life as I grew up.
Rabbi Neil reflected about the mid-November attacks in Paris.
The war on terror is an ideological war but not one that can be fought by military means. To do so actually runs the risk of prolonging the war. You can’t bomb an ideology out of existence.
Throughout the High Holy Days, Rabbi Neil's sermons explored responses to differing versions of the question, "Why Are We Here....?" Click Summary of Rabbi Neil's Sermons (PDF) to download a summary of the sermons for the High Holy Days. See below to download the full sermon for each day.
... there are many positive answers to the question Why Are We Here? We might be here in search of something. We might be here to atone. We might be here to see members of the community or to meet with God. We might be here to grow. Or we might not be able to put our finger exactly on why we’re here, but we just know we should be and that it benefits us to be here.
I didn’t ask “Why am I here?” which at first glance may have been a perfectly appropriate question to ask at a time of personal teshuvah, of individualised return to God. So why did I choose “we” and not “I?” Isn’t “Why am I here?” a perfectly valid question at this time?
... it’s all relative. Our suffering is the suffering of loneliness, of bereavement, of illness. It’s not the kind of suffering known by billions of people worldwide, who are deprived of clean water, food and safe shelter. It’s not the suffering of dictatorships or of war. That is suffering the likes of which we are usually completed spared. And we have to look at ourselves and acknowledge that much of that suffering is our fault.
The question “Why Are We Here?” presumes that we could be somewhere else. And of course, we recognise that we could, that there are hundreds of other places we could be. So, why did we choose to be here?
To define one specific end goal seems to be extremely limiting. After all, we all experience liturgy in a differing way. Is it not just enough to say that the journey itself is sufficient?
This is the installation sermon given by Rabbi Neil Amswych.
... had you asked me ten years ago where I imagined myself living now, New Mexico would not have ever been mentioned.