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Harold Schulweis dies at 89; influential rabbi stressed deed over ritual
Harold Schulweis dies at 89; influential rabbi stressed deed over ritual

Uri Herscher remembers the day 55 years ago when he heard the rabbi at an Oakland synagogue telling the biblical story of the binding of Isaac. Herscher, then a freshman at UC Berkeley who had gone to temple reluctantly, listened as Rabbi Harold Schulweis said that the angel who stopped Abraham from slaughtering his son was not a supernatural being, but Abraham's conscience. "It was a stunning insight," Herscher, now president of the Skirball Cultural Center in Los Angeles, recalled. "He's saying that God does not act alone. When people say, 'Where was God in these atrocious times,' he's saying, 'Where was humankind?'" Schulweis,...

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