Rabbi Alana Suskin

Rabbi Alana Suskin is an educator, activist, and widely-published writer. Ordained by the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies in California, she also holds BAs in Philosophy and Russian Linguistics, an MA in Philosophy and a graduate certificate in Women’s Studies, and is a popular speaker and teacher around the country. She is a senior managing editor of the progressive blog Jewschool.com, called “The most important thing happening online in the Jewish community today,” by noted Jewish sociologists Ari Kelman & Steven M. Cohen. Rabbi Suskin served as Assistant Rabbi at Adas Israel in Washington DC, the first synagogue in the USA to be addressed by Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and Director of Lifelong Learning at Shaare Torah in Gaithersburg, MD. Out of a passionate love for Israel and Zionism, she turned her rabbinate toward Israel advocacy and education with the Zionist, two-state policy organization, Americans for Peace Now. She has served on the boards of T’ruah, Jews United for Justice, and Interfaith Conference of Metropolitan Washington. As an outgrowth of her long-time peace building and interfaith efforts, she is currently engaged in a project developing relationships between Jewish and Muslim communities in her region, together reaching out to and overcoming fear in communities unfamiliar with us and our religious practices and customs. Rabbi Suskin is a Rabbis Without Borders Fellow.

Articles by Rabbi Alana Suskin

Warnings from Eikev

Rising levels of bigotry and nationalism come out of the fear people have of losing what little they have.

Acharei Mot – Kedoshim, Fearing Death and Respecting Our Elders

"Be careful to continue to respect an elder who has forgotten his Torah knowledge due to circumstances beyond his control. Even though he is no longer a Torah scholar, he must still be respected for the Torah that he once possessed. As we say: Both the tablets of the Covenant and the broken tablets are placed in the Ark.”  (BT Berachot 8) 

Vayakhel Pekudei

We believe that it is our holy work to address poverty, structural racism, environmental degradation, the military economy, and most importantly, the moral tone of the national dialogue.

Can We Love People Who Do Bad Things?

It is the very fact of loving the people who do bad things that enables them to change.

Me, Too.

The Jewish tradition is very clear that all sexual encounters require explicit consent.

What Would You Do for a Little Sweetness?

Symbols are no good if they are not filled by our actions

I Don’t Want to Replace You

You don’t think of yourself as a bad person.

A Test from God

Remember the source of our wealth

I’ll Pray for You

We seek the unique and disparage the regular, but we have it backward; it is in the every day and the repetitious, that we find divinity

Partisan Or Political?

It is difficult to know where values end and politics begin.