What is the connection between the particular and the universal? Rabbi Bair will explore the interplay between “roots and wings” when it comes to authentic spiritual expression and the universal impulse in Jewish texts and thought, focusing on the holiday of Passover as both deeply connected to the experience of the Jewish people throughout history and at the same time completely universal in its message and stakes. How do non-Jews best contribute to the Jewish vision of tikkun olam?
Rabbi Ethan Bair comes to Hamilton College after eight years as a congregational rabbi, most recently at Temple Beth Sholom, Miami Beach. He was ordained as a Reform rabbi at Hebrew Union College in Los Angeles in 2011, after which he served USC Hillel and helped establish the Los Angeles office of American Jewish World Service, a global organization working to realize human rights and end poverty in the developing world. Originally from Boston, he is a trained singer and graduate of Oberlin College (’03) where he triple-majored in Religion, Jewish Studies and German Studies, and went on to study at Humboldt Universität in Berlin as a Fulbright Fellow. A longtime activist for racial justice, immigration reform, and LGBTQ and women’s rights, Rabbi Bair is committed to building interfaith partnerships and creating an empowered spiritual Jewish community. He and his wife Nadya have two daughters, Chaya Miriam and Emunah Gittel.