“Together with a separation of man from God and the world goes an estrangement of man from himself.”
“God is to be found less in the ‘I’ than in the ‘We’, in the relationships we make, the institutions we fashion, the duties we share, and the moral lives we lead.”
“Whether it was because of Judaism’s strong sense of God’s transcendence or our long experience of exile, Jews found God in the when rather than the where.”
“God has given us many universes of faith but only one world in which to live together.”
“Once in a while God lets us see the script.”
“God often chooses circuitous routes but it helps to know that where we are, now, is where we need to be.”
“In finding God, our ancestors found themselves. Discovering God, singular and alone, they found the human person, singular and alone.”
“God is reality with a human face, the mirror without which we cannot see ourselves.”
“God is the music of all that lives, but there are times when all we hear is noise. The true religious challenge is to ignore the noise and focus on the music.”
“The greatest kindness God ever does for us is that He never lets us know in advance what we’re letting ourselves in for.”
“God is to be found in words, that these words to be found in the Torah, and that they form the basis of the covenant – the bond of love- between God and the Jewish people.”
“God is found less in nature than in human society, in the structures we make to honour His presence by honouring His image in other human beings.”
“God is the creator of the natural world, but He has left space for man to become the creator of the social world.”
“The greatest discovery of the Hebrew Bible was not monotheism, the idea that there is only one God, but the idea that God is personal, that at the core of reality is something that responds to our existence as persons. The assertion of Jewish faith, deeply human in its implications, is that God is the objective reality of personhood.”
“The God to whom we speak in prayer is not the ultimate power but the ultimate person, the Other in whom I find myself.”
“The Hebrew Bible speaks of a God who not only loves, but who loves precisely those who are otherwise unloved – the younger rather than the elder; the weak, not the strong, the few, not the many.”
“[God] chose the powerless to teach that He is not to be found in power, and people who neither shared the faith of others nor imposed their faith on others to teach that there is not one way to His presence, but many.”
“No other religion has shared the idea of a single God with many names, who has set His image on each of us, but with whom we can talk, each faith in its own language, each in its own way.”
“God is the call to human responsibility, the voice that we hear only if we first learn how to listen, the voice that summons us to act.”
“God, the creator of humanity, having made a covenant with all humanity, then turns to one people and commands it to be different in order to teach humanity the dignity of difference. Biblical monotheism is not the idea that there is one God and therefore one truth, one faith, one way of life, On the contrary, it is the idea that unity creates diversity.”
“God is God of all humanity, but no single faith is or should be the faith of all humanity.”
“God no more wants all faiths and cultures to be the same than a loving parent wants his or her children to be the same.”
“A God of your side as well as mind must be a God of justice who stands above us both, teaching us to make space for one another, to hear each other’s claims and to resolve them equitably. Only such a God would be truly transcendent – greater not only than the natural universe but also than the spiritual universe capable of being comprehended in any one language, any single faith. Only such a God could teach mankind to make peace other than by conquest and conversion, and as something nobler than practical necessity.”
“Once of the classic roles of religion has been to preserve a space – physical and metaphysical – immune to the pressures of the market. When we stand before God we do so regardless of what we earn, what we own, what we buy, what we can afford. We do so as beings of ultimate, non-transactional value, here because someone – some force at the heart of being – called us into existence and summoned us to be a blessing.”
“God did not create the universe as a scientist in a laboratory, or as a technocrat setting in motion the big bang but rather as a parent giving birth to a child.”
“God, by giving us free will, empowered us to make mistakes. He never asked us to be perfect. All He asked was that we try our best, own up to our mistakes when we make them, and try a little harder next time. Once we believe in a forgiving God, then it doesn’t matter if other people lose faith in us. It doesn’t even matter if we lose faith in ourselves. Because somewhere someone has faith in us; and God never loses that faith.”
“We know God less by contemplation than by emulation. The choice is not between ‘faith’ and ‘deeds’, for it is by our deeds that we express our faith and make it real in the life of others and the world.”
“There is no life without a task; no person without a talent; no place without a fragment of God’s light waiting to be discovered and redeemed; no situation without its possibility of sanctification; no moment without its call. It may take a lifetime to learn how to find these things, but once we learn, we realise in retrospect that it all ever took was the ability to listen. When God calls, he does not do so by way of universal imperatives. Instead, he whispers our name – and the greatest reply, the reply of Abraham, is simply hineni: ‘Here I am’, ready to heed your call, to mend a fragment of your all-too-broken world.”
“Where what we want to do meets what needs to be done, that is where God wants us to be.”
“ God is the soul of being in whose freedom we discover freedom, in whose love we discover love, and in whose forgiveness we learn to forgive.”
“Far from being timeless and immutable, God in the Hebrew Bible is active, engaged, in constant dialogue with his people, calling, urging, warning, challenging and forgiving.”
“God creates order; it is man who creates chaos.”
“I have sought God, not through philosophical proofs, scientific demonstrations or theological arguments; not through miracles or mysteries or inner voices or sudden epiphanies; not by ceasing to question or challenge or doubt; not by blind faith or existential leap; certainly not by abandonment of reason and an embrace of the irrational. These things have brought many people to God. But they have also brought many people to worship things that are not God, like power, or ideology, or race. Instead I have sought God in people – people in themselves seemed to point to something or someone beyond themselves.”
“God is the distant voice we hear and seek to amplify in our systems of meaning, each particular to a culture, a civilisation, a faith. God is the One within the many; the unity at the core of our diversity; the call that leads us to journey beyond the self and its strivings, to enter into otherness and be enlarged by it, to seek to be a vehicle through which blessing flows outwards to the world, to give thanks for the miracle of being and the radiance that shines wherever two lives touch in affirmation, forgiveness and love.”
“There is a difference between God and religion. God is universal, religions are particular. Religion is the translation of God into a particular language and thus into the life of a group, a nation, a community of faith. In the course of history, God has spoken to mankind in many languages: through Judaism to Jews, Christianity to Christians, Islam to Muslims. Only such a God is truly transcendental – greater not only than the natural universe but also than the spiritual universe articulated in any single faith, any specific language of human sensibility.”
“The truth at the beating heart of monotheism is that God is greater than religion; that He is only partially comprehended by any faith. He is my God, but also your God. He is on my side, but also on your side. He exists not only in my faith, but also in yours.”
“The God of Israel is the God of all humanity, but the religion of Israel is not, and is not intended to be, the religion of all humanity.”