From the window in my living room I can make out a cemetery, a cemetery unlike any other that exists in our country.
 
Those buried in this cemetery did not die gradually; they died suddenly. Those buried in this cemetery did not pass away; they were taken away. Though no coroner’s report ever established the precise cause of death, it is clear that these innocents died of a horrible disease. A disease called terrorism.
 
My home is located near Ground Zero. I suspect they call it that because its woeful tale lays the Ground for a feeling of Zero hope in our future.
 
But there is hope…
 
From my living room window I see a light, a light unlike any other that exists in our great country. On an island of hope, there soars a Torch of Liberty, a beacon of religious and civic freedom to generations of Americans and new immigrants.
 
This is a light that can never be extinguished. This is a light that was not designed to illuminate the outside world, but the inside of a nation. This is a light that is held high in the hand of one, and in the hearts of untold millions.
 
The spiritual climate of our day can be assessed from different perspectives.
 
On the one hand, we live in an era where people are far more eager to establish a high-speed Internet connection, than they are anxious to create a connection on High; we obsess over downloading information to our Palm Pilots, but overlook the need to load up our souls with inspiration; we are forever buying and selling stocks, yet rarely find time to pause and take stock.
 
On the other hand, “Human decency is on the rise,” informs one billboard in lower Manhattan, “and kindness is making a comeback.” Our President tells us we can best fight terrorism by being extra friendly to our neighbors. In these uncertain times, we find ourselves open to life’s inner meaning and sublime message, as the need to establish a meaningful relationship with G-d assumes added urgency. Thus, the time is clearly ripe for a reawakening of our Kosher Spirit.
 
So please welcome our new magazine as a personal letter addressed to your soul. Read us like an e-mail marked “Essentials” and addressed to you@jew.edu. In the pages ahead you will find much ‘light’ reading, designed to help your spirit soar. Negotiate our magazine as you would a staircase, every article a further step on what we hope will amount to a journey of spiritual ascendance.