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Chris Harrison

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Back view of an older man with his arm around a younger man as if consoling him

In September 2018, I had the honor of attending the NYC premiere of the film All About Nina, where I met director Eva Vives and lead actress Mary Elizabeth Winstead. The film was an incredible directorial debut for Vives, and I was captivated by Winstead and her award-worthy performance as a comedian and survivor of sexual assault (inspired by Vives’ own experiences).

Through their powerful, moving film, released during the #MeToo movement, Vives and Winstead inspired me to write about the Jewish imperative to listen to survivors, but I felt compelled to do more. Soon after, I...

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Blurry photo from below and facing upward of two men shaking hands and smiling at one another

When the #MeToo movement began in 2017 – when countless women and non-binary individuals came forward as survivors of sexual abuse and assault – the notion of “toxic masculinity” became a widespread point of discussion.

Maya Salam of The New York Times defines this term as “what can come of teaching boys that they can’t express emotion openly; that they have to be ‘tough all the time’; that anything other than that makes them ‘feminine’ or weak.”

Taking note, Gillette recently released a new ad campaign addressing toxic masculinity. Titled “The Best a Man Can Be,” it...

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Movie still of an Orthodox Jewish man holding a shovel and standing atop a mound of dirt as if digging a grave

“For you are dust and to dust you shall return.” – Genesis 3:19

Most of us know the pain of losing a loved one. While Judaism provides us with a centuries-old method of mourning, each person grieves and reckons with loss in their own way. To Dust, the latest film by Reform Jewish filmmaker Shawn Snyder, discusses mourning in a way I’d never seen.

From the film’s website:

Shmuel (Géza Röhrig), a Hasidic cantor in Upstate New York, distraught by the untimely death of his wife, struggles to find religious solace, while secretly obsessing over how her body will decay...

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Two person shaped puzzle pieces against a pink background

In 2018, I wrote about "Process Theology," which sees God and the universe in a constant state of evolution and views us as God’s partners in creating a better world. While my belief in God can admittedly vary by the day (sometimes even by the time of day), Process Theology helped me overcome a lot of theological hurdles and provide a blueprint for connecting with the Divine. That first essay was intended as a perspective for those who see God less as an all-knowing, all-powerful being in the sky and more of the cohesive bond that unites us and propels us to live just, merciful, humble...

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A young black man wearing a prayer shawl and a head covering while reading from a Jewish prayer book

Whenever I enter Jewish spaces, whether it’s my first time or my fiftieth, I make a conscious effort to bring one or all of the following: my kippah (head covering), my Sh’ma bracelet, and my Magen David (Star of David) necklace.

I wear these items because I love being Jewish, and physical reminders of my Judaism help me feel more at home while attending Shabbat services, festivals, etc. – but I also bring them because, as a black person entering majority white Jewish spaces, I feel like I have to.

When I attend Jewish events without these totems, my past experiences nag at...

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