Many friends have asked me to explain a little more why the David Cardozo Academy no longer has the finances to send new weekly Thoughts To Ponder, authored by myself as I have done for many years. Till now we have published nearly 700 essays, besides documentaries, podcasts, and videos. This is in addition to the many books I have published and hope still to publish.
The answer is simple: Several big donors who pledged money did not fulfill their promises. Two have regretfully died, and others discontinued after they were informed by some influential people/rabbis that my thoughts are no longer “kosher”. They told me that when I would again start writing purely traditional ideas which would fit to mainstream / conventional orthodox Judaism, they would again sponsor the David Cardozo Academy.
I have whole-heartedly refused to do so, even when it will force me and the academy to bankruptcy. No money will ever force me to change my mind, unless it has been proven that my thoughts are no longer rooted in the Jewish tradition.
While it is true that my thoughts are often novel, unusual and even controversial, there is not the slightest doubt that they do not violate what authentic Judaism stands for. The difference is that I know of ideas and sources within orthodox Judaism my opponents do not seem to know of, or are not prepared to develop in the way I do. At other times they do not seem to understand these ideas properly, or not to grasp the possibilities of developing them in ways which give birth to new ideas, something which Judaism has always stood for, and is in great need of.
Not once have they showed me that my ideas can no longer belong to authentic Judaism.
I pride myself on the fact that people much greater than myself, such as Maimonides, Rav Kook, Rav Benzion Uziel, Rav Shagar and many others had the same problem.
That is all there is to it. We will wait for better days!
Here are two short podcasts stimulated by my dear friend Rabbi Ari Zeev Schwartz of Jerusalem, author of The Spiritual Revolution of Rav Kook:
I hope you enjoy them, have a great Shabbat.
Nathan Lopes Cardozo