Elie Kaplan Spitz is an author, rabbi, attorney, meditation teacher, and popular lecturer. He served as the spiritual leader of Congregation B’nai Israel of Tustin, CA for over 33 years and as a member of the Rabbinical Assembly’s Committee of Jewish Law and Standards for twenty years. He has published four books: Does the Soul Survive? Jewish Views of the Afterlife, Past Lives, and Living with Purpose (2000, 2015); Healing from Despair: Choosing Wholeness in a Broken World (2008), and Increasing Wholeness: Jewish Wisdom and Guided Meditations to Strengthen and Calm Body, Heart, Mind and Spirit (2015), and Duets on Psalms: Drawing New Meanings from Ancient Words (2023).
> How would a contemporary juror view survival of the soul?
> How to live a balanced life and sleep better at night
> How are Biblical writings relevant to us today?
Rabbi Spitz will also share:
> His journey to becoming a Rabbi
> How the Psalms in his new book can apply to anyone of any faith
> How these messages bring solace in a time of divisiveness, etc
> What he would like readers to take away from his new book
Psalms are our people’s songs, an ancient playlist that still strikes a chord in our hearts. From lamentation to celebration, the Psalms speak to us from generation to generation.
Rabbis Elie Spitz and Jack Riemer take us into a deeper exploration of the Psalms, going beyond the surface meaning of the words with new, thoughtful interpretations, taking a fresh look at these ancient texts and the relevance they can hold for us today. These contemporary translations of the ancient text reveal new facets of insight and understanding.
It is a testament to their lasting power that the Psalms continue to provide readers with solace, challenge, inspiration, and more. Duets on Psalms will inspire you to revisit these ancient texts and see them with fresh eyes because, in the end, it’s not what the psalmist intended that matters but the meaning you gain from each psalm, making their words your own.
“Rarely do we get to sit by the side of two spiritual leaders at the height of their powers, to savor their wisdom as they unveil the deep wisdom and compassionate heart in the Book of Psalms. These ancient poems, newly translated, have spoken to seeking souls across the generations. Thanks to Rabbis Riemer and Spitz, they can speak to us now!”
—Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson, Dean of Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University, author God of Becoming and Relationship: The Dynamic Nature of Process Theology
“In Duets on Psalms, two remarkable rabbis breathe new life into the ancient words of The Book of Psalms. Rabbi Elie Spitz and Rabbi Jack Riemer perfectly complement one another offering us close readings, new translations, modern scholarship and timeless wisdom. They give us the tools to allow the words of the Psalms to open our minds and enter our hearts. This illuminating work is a literary journey filled with faith, wisdom, hope, healing, meaning and inspiration.”
—Rabbi Naomi Levy, author of Einstein and the Rabbi and To Begin Again
“Not just rabbis and pastors, but everyone who loves the Psalms should own this wonderful book. Rabbi Jack and Rabbi Elie have not only learned the Psalms all their lives, they have lived the Psalms through decades of ministry to people in every possible phase and crisis of life. This book oozes with authentic wisdom that only comes from investing a lifetime in both God’s Word and God’s world.”
—Pastor Rick Warren, author of The Purpose Driven Life
“In Duets on the Psalms, Rabbis Riemer and Spitz, two of the master teachers of our times, prove the truth of the rabbinic adage, ‘Turn [the Scripture] over and over again, for all is in it,’ by providing new readings of familiar texts. Through their multi-layered explorations of and commentaries upon eleven psalms that address the gamut of human emotions and aspirations, they provide the reader with new insights and meanings into the human condition that stimulate the mind but more significantly transform the soul. Theirs is a spiritual masterpiece!”
—Rabbi David Ellenson, Chancellor Emeritus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion
“What a brilliant combination. Rabbis Jack Riemer and Elie Spitz, two of Judaism’s most inspirational teachers, offer a lifetime of insights on the Bible’s most inspired book. A work to read and reread and to return to for inspiration.”
—Rabbi Joseph Telushkin, author of Jewish Literacy and Words that Hurt Words that Heal
“When great souls come together, there can be sparks. When they unite to find new meaning in the sacred songs and poems of the book of Psalms, a fire burns.”
—Craig Taubman, singer and composer