On November 4, Rabbi Michael Balinsky spoke to a lively crowd at Elmhurst College about the intersection of divinity and intellect.
Rabbi Balinsky is executive vice president of the Chicago Board of Rabbis, an organization representing 200 rabbis of all denominations. He also served for 19 years as director of the Hillel Center at Northwestern University, where he challenged students to create vibrant and considered Jewish lives.
At Elmhurst, Rabbi Balinsky presented Where the Intellect Meets the Divine, this year's Abraham Joshua Heschel lecture.
Rabbi Balinsky’s work is centered on cultivating Jewish learning and teaching, as well as integrating education from the Torah into everyday life. “I am deeply committed to teaching Torah in a wide variety of settings where Jews gather to study, even if those settings are outside the usual boundaries,” he says. “Jews are thirsty for authentic Torah study, and without sacrificing our integrity, it behooves us to teach wherever members of the Jewish community gather.”
Balinsky graduated from and received his ordination from Yeshiva University. He served as a Hillel director for 22 years, most of which were as director of the Louis and Saerree Fiedler Hillel Center at Northwestern University. Balinsky is a member of the Jewish Catholic Scholars Dialogue in Chicago, and serves on the board of the Parliament of World Religions and on the Council of the Religious Leaders of Metropolitan Chicago.
Rabbi Michael Balinsky: Where the Intellect Meets the Divine