Original is not a word often used in connection with a code of Jewish law. In general, the rule tends to be that if it’s true it isn’t new, and if it’s new it isn’t true. But “original” is precisely the right word to use in connection with Maimonides’ text of law code, the Mishneh Torah, especially in connection with Rosh Hashanah. Maimonides was the first halachist to create a work called Hilchot Teshuvah, the Laws of Repentance. One law, in particular, is stunning in its originality, as well as in its implications for us.
I was honored by the ADL last week with the Deborah award, given to women leaders who embody the qualities of the Judge and Prophetess, Deborah. Madeline Albright and Diane Feinstein have gotten it, as well as pretty much every important CEO-type who also does good work outside of their profession.