About Jay Michaelson

Jay Michaelson is a columnist for the ForwardZeek: A Jewish Journal of Thought and Culture (which he co-founded in 2002), and Reality Sandwich magazines, and the executive director of Nehirim: GLBT Jewish Culture & Spirituality.  He recently returned (in February 2009) from five months of silent meditation retreat in Massachusetts and Nepal.  Jay is the author of God in Your Body: Kabbalah, Mindfulness, and Embodied Spiritual Practice (2007), Another Word for Sky: Poems (2008), and Everything is God: The Radical Path of Nondual Judaism (2009). A recent visiting professor at Boston University Law School, Jay has taught at Yale University, City College, Elat Chayyim, the Wexner Summer Institute, and many other institutions. Jay holds an M.A. in Religious Studies from Hebrew University, where he currently is pursuing his Ph.D., as well as a J.D. from Yale and B.A. from Columbia.


In Defense of Spiritual Vulgarity

By August 27, 2009

The other day, I was having lunch with a yoga-teacher friend of mine who, after years of teaching, was beginning to get burned out.  He still enjoyed the daily routine of teaching, and he was continuing to grow in how … Read More

Bound Astarte Talkatively Tallness–Recent Spam Poetry

By July 23, 2009

Perhaps you’ve noticed that a lot of the email spam we receive every day has, in very small print, all sorts of nonsense text, together with the usual advertisement for more inches or real estate in Nigeria.  The reason spam … Read More

Monotheism and the Spirits of Nature

By July 2, 2009

Recently, on a trip to South Korea, I was moved to tears at a rock formation venerated by Korean shamans.  The place was so holy that the power of it, the energy of it, was immediately apparent and absolutely obvious.  … Read More

Rethinking Jewish Spirituality

By May 20, 2009

Jewish spirituality is, in large part, in the state-change business.  At the better synagogues-i.e., the ones which actually care about prayer or spirituality, or at the very least a good community feeling-you show up thinking about mortgages and to-do lists, … Read More

Peoples of the Blog

By April 23, 2009

By now, we’ve all heard the hype: Web 2.0 is changing the very notion of media, blogging is replacing journalism, and thanks to MySpace and YouTube (not to mention XTube), we are all, just as Andy Warhol predicted, movie stars … Read More

The Trouble with Business

By March 31, 2009

When I graduated from college, my enemy was clear: the man in the grey flannel suit.  The big-business corporate capitalist, fixated on greed, destroying the environment, spreading consumerism – and all so that he could get the better BMW than … Read More

The Dream of the Magician

By March 6, 2009

"You’ve got to go out on a limb sometimes because that’s where the fruit is." – Will Rogers   In high school, all I wanted, but didn’t even know that I wanted, was a magician to suddenly appear in my … Read More

A Jewish Perspective on the Jhanas, Part Two

By February 5, 2009

Part II: Is there God in the Jhanas? So what about that “Is“–that sense of devekut, the numinous, the Lover, that I found in the fourth jhana? As I’ve indicated, I didn’t just experience the jhanas as a blissful or … Read More