The test of faith is whether I can make space for difference. Can I recognize God's image in someone who is not in my image, who language, faith, ideal, are different from mine? If I cannot, then I have made God in my image instead of allowing him to remake me in his.

— Jonathan Sacks

The most impressive Jonathan Sacks quotes that are easy to memorize and remember

Close to a billion people - one-eighth of the world's population - still live in hunger. Each year 2 million children die through malnutrition. This is happening at a time when doctors in Britain are warning of the spread of obesity. We are eating too much while others starve.

64

The build-up of personal and collective debt in America and Europe should have sent warning signals to anyone familiar with the biblical institutions of the Sabbatical and Jubilee years, created specifically because of the danger of people being trapped by debt.

54

Some years ago there was a study to discover the most stressful occupation.

It turned out not to be the head of a large business, football manager or prime minister, but rather: bus driver.

54

In our interconnected world, we must learn to feel enlarged, not threatened, by difference - that is what I have argued.

49

Make space in your life for the things that matter, for family and friends, love and generosity, fun and joy. Without this, you will burn out in mid-career and wonder where your life went.

46

No great achiever - even those who made it seem easy - ever succeeded without hard work.

34

A society in which there are high levels of voluntary activity will simply be a better, happier place than one where there are not.

29

God has given us many faiths but only one world in which to co-exist.

May your work help all of us to cherish our commonalities and feel enlarged by our differences.

26

Stabilizing the euro is one thing, healing the culture that surrounds it is another. A world in which material values are everything and spiritual values nothing is neither a stable state nor a good society. The time has come for us to recover the Judeo-Christian ethic of human dignity in the image of God.

24

True freedom requires the rule of law and justice, and a judicial system in which the rights of some are not secured by the denial of rights to others.

20

We are biological creatures. We are born, we live, we die. There is no transcendent purpose to existence. At best we are creatures of reason, and by using reason we can cure ourselves of emotional excess. Purged of both hope and fear, we find courage in the face of helplessness, insignificance and uncertainty.

19

We need to rediscover the idea of the common good and work together to build a home.

18

About Jonathan Sacks

Quotes 128 sayings
Profession Rabbi
Birthday October 16

Yom Kippur, the Day of Atonement, is the holy of holies of Jewish time.

It is that rarest of phenomena, a Jewish festival without food. Instead it is a day of fasting and prayer, introspection and self-judgment when, collectively and repeatedly, we confess our sins and pray to be written into God's Book of Life.

12

Yom HaShoah is a vital day in the Jewish calendar, providing us with a focal point for our remembrance. We cannot bring the dead back to life, but we can bring their memory back to life and ensure they are not forgotten. We can undertake in our lives to do what they were so cruelly prevented from doing in theirs.

12

Jews have deep respect for the Queen and the royal family.

We say a prayer for them every Sabbath in synagogue. We recite a special blessing on seeing the Queen.

12

Jews know this in their bones. Our community could not exist for a day without its volunteers. They are the lifeblood of our organizations, whether they involve welfare, youth, education, care of the sick and elderly, or even protection against violence and abuse.

12

Freedom is not won by merely overthrowing a tyrannical ruler or an oppressive regime. That is usually only the prelude to a new tyranny, a new oppression.

12

While we can remember the past, we cannot write the future.

Only our children, the future of our community, can do that.

11

Islamophobia is a complex phenomenon.

10

Those who believe that liberal democracy and the free market can be defended by the force of law and regulation alone, without an internalised sense of duty and morality, are tragically mistaken.

10

Follow your passion. Nothing - not wealth, success, accolades or fame - is worth spending a lifetime doing things you don't enjoy.

8

Religion is the best antidote to the individualism of the consumer age.

The idea that society can do without it flies in the face of history and, now, evolutionary biology.

8

Freedom begins with what we teach our children.

That is why Jews became a people whose passion is education, whose heroes are teachers and whose citadels are schools.

7

The Holocaust survivors are among the most inspiring people I have had the privilege to meet.

6

Religious ritual is a way of structuring time so that we, not employers, the market or the media, are in control. Life needs its pauses, its chapter breaks, if the soul is to have space to breathe.

6

The Jewish festival of freedom is the oldest continuously observed religious ritual in the world. Across the centuries, Passover has never lost its power to inspire the imagination of successive generations of Jews with its annually re-enacted drama of slavery and liberation.

6

We should challenge the relativism that tells us there is no right or wrong, when every instinct of our mind knows it is not so, and is a mere excuse to allow us to indulge in what we believe we can get away with. A world without values quickly becomes a world without value.

6

The Hebrew Bible contains multiple provisions to ensure that no one would go hungry. The corners of the field, forgotten sheaves of grain, gleanings that drop from the hands of the gleaner, and small clusters of grapes left on the vine were to be given to the poor.

5

Just as the natural environment depends on biodiversity, so the human environment depends on cultural diversity, because no one civilization encompasses all the spiritual, ethical and artistic expressions of mankind.

5

The market economy is deeply congruent with the values set out in the Hebrew Bible. Material prosperity is a divine blessing. Poverty crushes the spirit as well as the body, and its alleviation is a sacred task. Work is a noble calling.

5

The market economy is very good at wealth creation but not perfect at all about wealth distribution.

4

Governments cannot make marriages or turn feckless individuals into responsible citizens. That needs another kind of change agent.

4

Which European leader today would not relish the wonder-working powers of a Moses? Budget deficit? Unpopular cuts? How about just a little miracle, an overnight increase in gold reserves, a new oil field, or the next world-changing communications technology? Surely that's not too much to ask.

3

I see in the rising crescendo of ethnic tensions, civilization clashes and the use of religious justification for acts of terror, a clear and present danger to humanity.

3

Cyberspace can't compensate for real space. We benefit from chatting to people face to face.

3

In virtually every Western society in the 1960s there was a moral revolution, an abandonment of its entire traditional ethic of self-restraint.

3

Hope, even more than necessity, is the mother of invention.

3

Britain, relative to the U.S., is a highly secular society. Philanthropy alone cannot fill the gap left by government cutbacks. And the sources of altruism go deep into our evolutionary past.

3

Since Hiroshima and the Holocaust, science no longer holds its pristine place as the highest moral authority. Instead, that role is taken by human rights. It follows that any assault on Jewish life - on Jews or Judaism or the Jewish state - must be cast in the language of human rights.

3

If the history of the Day of Atonement has anything to say to us now it is: never relieve individuals of moral responsibility. The more we have, the more we grow.

3

Parenthood involves massive sacrifice: money, attention, time and emotional energy.

2

God's forgiveness allows us to be honest with ourselves.

We recognize our imperfections, admit our failures, and plead to God for clemency.

2

While everyone else is thinking about economics and politics, executive salaries and the future of the euro, do the opposite, even if it's hard. Invest in the spirit.

2

There's always hope. You can lose everything else in the world, but Jews never lose hope.

2

Israel is a democratic state with an independent judiciary, a free press and a diverse population of many cultures, religions and creeds.

2

Food prices are often kept artificially high.

The result is that the Millennium Development Goals set out by the United Nations at the start of the new millennium are not being reached. Fine words have not yet been turned into deeds.

2

The greatest single antidote to violence is conversation.

2

Religion creates community, community creates altruism and altruism turns us away from self and towards the common good... There is something about the tenor of relationships within a religious community that makes it the best tutorial in citizenship and good neighborliness.

2

We have lots of heroes today - sportsmen, supermodels, media personalities.

They come, they have their 15 minutes of fame, and they go. But the influence of good teachers stays with us. They are the people who really shape our lives.

2
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