Dr. Joel Hoffman
Do Only the Wicked Suffer? Reward, Punishment and the Hidden Message of the High Holidays
On the surface, the High Holidays suggest that you get what you deserve: If you’re sick, that’s your comeuppance. If you’re well, you merit it. Bad people suffer and good people thrive. But do we really believe that? It turns out the Rabbis didn’t, and, in fact, cautioned us not to believe it either. Come explore this hidden, crucial message preserved in one of our most popular High Holiday prayers.
An expert in translating dead languages, Dr. Joel M. Hoffman focuses on bringing ancient texts to life. He has taught on the faculties of Brandeis University and HUC-JIR in New York City, and lectured about his work on all six inhabitable continents. He lives in Westchester and is delighted to be joining Temple Emanu-El for Yom Kippur.