The Most Important Jewish YouTube Video Ever Made


There are times when you watch someone do something and you think to yourself, “OK, I’m done. There is no way I can top that.” That’s how I felt when I watched Rabbi Benay Lappe’s ELI Talk. The bottom line: you are a queer Jew, especially if you are here on PunkTorah. Are you Jewish […]

Holiness Is Apparently Not A Gay Buddhist In Blue Jeans (Parshah Kedoshim)


Many of my friends struggle with this week’s Torah portion because of one line: And a man who lies with a male as one would with a woman both of them have committed an abomination; they shall surely be put to death; their blood is upon themselves (Lev. 20:13). It’s interesting to note that none […]

Punk Maggid: Sacred Stories


  Joey B’Shalom, working as the Punk Maggid, lives to help other Jews grab onto the awesomeness that is the Divine Holy Wow, aka G-d, through telling Jewish stories, wrestling with Torah, and reinterpreting Jewish ritual for the 21st century. She lives in Portland, OR, with her ridiculously amazing partner and their four spectacular teenagers. […]

What Gay Bookstores Taught Me About Progressive Judaism

gay bookstore outwrite

What kind of world do we live in where my trans friend is more comfortable at Chabad, the cultural icon of Orthodox Judaism, and not the Reform temple with its ultra egalitarian, inclusive spiritual politics? This question that I have been pondering all started with the closing of a gay bookstore. Outwrite Bookstore and Coffee […]

Circumcisions For Men, Women and Everyone In Between (Parshat Ekev)

2011 Torah

“Circumcise … the foreskin of your heart,” G-d says in Devarim 10:16. But how the heck do you hack off the skin around your heart? And by the way, the heart doesn’t have a foreskin! Here’s what I gather: circumcision is a mitzvah because Abraham did it, and so should we, right? On the other […]