Marc Gafni

Marc Gafni
Marc Gafni
Born Marc Winiarz
1961 (age 49–50)
Pittsfield, Massachusetts
Nationality American
Other names Mordechai Gafni, Mark Gafni, Mordechai Winiarz, Mordechai Winyarz

Marc Gafni (born 1961) is an American author and former Modern Orthodox rabbi, who was once associated with the Jewish Renewal movement. He is no longer associated with the movement after ongoing personal and theological controversies.[1] In 2004 and 2005 articles in Haaretz,[2] he is described as promoting a balance between the erotic and the ethical in Judaism. He is best known for his teachings on the relationship between spirituality and eroticsm, and his claim that all failure of ethics result from a collapse of Eros.[3] Eros is defined by Gafni in his teaching as interiority, presence, yearning and interconnectivity.[4] He also is described as promoting the integration of the feminine godhead with the masculine godhead through their integration in the lived life of every individual. He has referred to this process as Yichud.[5]



Gafni, also known as Mordechai Gafni, Mark Gafni, Marc Winiarz, Mordechai Winiarz, and Mordechai Winyarz, was born to Holocaust survivors in Pittsfield, Massachusetts.[6] Gafni was educated at Modern-Orthodox yeshivas in the New York area. In the 1980s, while attending Yeshiva University,[6] Gafni worked with Jewish Public School Youth, an organization providing Jewish social clubs in public schools.[7] In 1988, Gafni also worked as a Rabbi in Boca Raton, Florida.[2] After making aliyah in the 1990s, Gafni served as rabbi of the West Bank settlement of Tzofim.[8] When Gafni moved to Israel he hebraicized his name. "Winiarz," Polish for "vintner," is related to the Hebrew word "gefen" - grape, thus the name "Gafni". In the late nineties he opened the Bayit Chadash spiritual center in Jaffa.[8] Gafni advocated bringing eros back into Jewish practice.[9]

He was ordained as a rabbi by Shlomo Riskin of Efrat. He also received rabbinical certification from the Chief Rabbinate of the State of Israel, and from Rabbi Gershon Winkler. Riskin has since expressed his intent to withdraw his rabbinical ordination because Gafni went beyond the bounds of Orthodoxy; when Gafni heard of Riskin's wishes, he wrote a letter returning Riskin's semicha.[2]

Gafni holds a D.Phil from Oxford University. The university approved his thesis, titled The theology of acosmic humanism: Mordechai Lainer of Izbica, in April 2008 and it was formally granted in July 2008.[10]

Gafni has been married multiple times and has three children from his marriages.[6]

Recent work

In 2008, after a two-year personal retreat, Gafni co-founded iEvolve.[11] Gafni also teaches at the Shalom Mountain Wisdom School and the Pacific Coast Church.[12] Gafni recently co-founded the publishing company Incorrect Inc.[13] [14] Gafni is a scholar in Residence at the Integral Institute, and the Director of the Integral Spiritual Experience. In 2009, Gafni and his partner Mariana Caplan founded the Center For World Spirituality.


He has written a series of bestselling books on the subjects of Judaism, eroticism and spirituality.[15] His book Soul Prints, is his major book on his teaching of Unique Self and was the subject of a PBS special.[15] His book "The Mystery of Love" is his major work on Holiness and Eros. His Hebrew book, "Uncertainty", is about reclaiming Uncertainty as a spiritual value. His Hebrew book "Certainty" is about re-defining certainty, from certainty of dogma, to core certainty of self, from 'It is true' to 'I am True'. Who is afraid of Lilith? Rereading the Kabbalah of the Feminine Shadow, a book Gafni cowrote with Ohad Ezrachi, was described by the publisher as offering "the much-needed perspective of the male feminist viewpoint."

His books were published by Simon and Schuster.[16] He released an audio lecture series in 2004, entitled "The Soul Prints Workshop: Wisdom Teachings from the Kabbalah Illuminating Your Unique Life Purpose". He released a second audio series in 2005 entitled, "On the Erotic and the Holy, The Kabbalistic Tantra of Everyday Life". Both audio series are published by Sounds True.


Gafni has been accused of sexual improprieties in the past.[2] New allegations surfaced in 2006 after three women accused Gafni of sexual harassment.[8] Within a few days of the allegations, Gafni both left his position at Bayit Chadash in Israel and left Israel.[7][8] The ramifications of the accusations, how they were addressed, and Gafni's subsequent removal from Bayit Chadash, contributed to its closure.[17] Once in the United States, Gafni sent a remorseful letter to his congregation,[18] causing his former supporters to express regret.[1] Gafni, on his personal website, later explained that the letter was to cool the controversy and was not an admission of fault; Gafni maintains that the allegations are untrue.[19]

In July 2008, an article published in the magazine Catalyst, a publication for which Gafni himself had written anonymously, attempted to counter earlier accusations, in particular the claims of harassment by the three women and of sexual predation, citing new evidence including recovered emails and lie detector tests.[20] The article also quotes former Salt Lake City Mayor Rocky Anderson as supporting Gafni's contention that the allegations of harassment and predation are untrue, and that the relationships were mutual and consensual.[20] Gafni has a collection of evaluations on his website, including polygraph results,[21] which he claims corroborate his position that the allegations of sexual impropriety were false and for character evidence.[22]



  • A Certain Spirit; {Vadai} Re-Defining Certainty. Hebrew, Modan Publishers, 1999
  • A Uncertain Spirit, {Safek} Reclaiming Uncertainty as Spiritual Value, Hebrew Modan Publishers, 1999
  • Soul Prints: Your Path to Fulfillment (Paperback - January 29, 2002)
  • The Mystery of Love (Paperback - March 16, 2004)
  • The Erotic And The Holy: Kabbalistic Tantra for Everyday Living (February 2006)
  • Seelenmuster (Paperback - June 1, 2002)
  • Gafni and Ohad Ezrachi. Who is afraid of Lilith? Rereading the Kabbalah of the Feminine Shadow (Modan Publishing House - 2005)


  • The Soul Prints Workshop: Wisdom Teachings from the Kabbalah Illuminating Your Unique Life Purpose Sounds True (2004)
  • "The Erotic and the Holy: The Kabbalistic Tantra of Everyday Life" Sounds True, 2005


  1. ^ a b Siegal, Jennifer (May 19, 2006). "Rabbi Fired Over Sex Claims, Defenders Offer Mea Culpa". The Forward. Retrieved 2008-01-13. 
  2. ^ a b c d Rosenblatt, Gary (September 24, 2004). "The Re-Invented Rabbi". Between the Lines. Jewish Week. Archived from the original on 2004-09-25. Retrieved 2008-01-11. 
  3. ^ Gafni, Marc (2004). The Mystery of Love. Simon and Schuster. pp. Ch 3 and 7. 
  4. ^ Gafni, Mordechai (March/April 2003). "The Erotic and the Ethical". Tikkun (Berkeley, CA). 
  5. ^ On the Erotic and the Holy--Sounds True DVD series
  6. ^ a b c Livneh, Neri (March 4, 2004). "Post-Orthodoxy Journey". Haaretz. Archived from the original on 2005. Retrieved 2008-08-11.  Note:Ha'aretz archives show article (#1076999) for cost. This link is a free convenience link to the article.
  7. ^ a b Montefinise, Angela (May 21, 2006). "Fiend Rabbi On Run". The New York Post. pp. 25. Archived from the original on 2006-06-14. Retrieved 2008-01-13. 
  8. ^ a b c d Raved, Ahiya; Avi Cohen (May 18, 2006). "Rabbi Gafni accused of sexual assault". Ynetnews.,7340,L-3252577,00.html. Retrieved 2008-07-25. 
  9. ^ Rosenblum, Jonathan (July 14, 2006). "'Sexualizing' the public square" (convenience link). The Jerusalem Post. pp. 10. Archived from the original on 2008. Retrieved 2008-10-11.  See also Gafni, The Erotic And The Holy: Kabbalistic Tantra for Everyday Living
  10. ^ "The theology of acosmic humanism : Mordechai Lainer of Izbica". Oxford Libraries Information System. 2006. 
  11. ^ "About Us". iEvolve. 2009. Retrieved September 8, 2009. [dead link]
  12. ^ "Marc Gafni". Shalom Mountain. Retrieved September 8, 2009. 
  13. ^ Gafni, Marc (2009). "Biography". Marc Gafni. Retrieved September 8, 2009. 
  14. ^ "Marc Gafni". Integral Life. 2009. Retrieved September 8, 2009. 
  15. ^ a b "Israeli rabbi and best-selling author Marc Gafni to lecture in Tucson". Arizona Jewish Post. Retrieved 2008-01-13. 
  16. ^ "Marc Gafni". Simon and Schuster. Retrieved 2008-01-13. [dead link]
  17. ^ Ner-David, Jacob (December 2006). "Genug: Time for a Change". Sh'ma: A Journal of Jewish Responsibility (Boston: Jewish Family & Life!). Retrieved 2008-01-13. [dead link]
  18. ^ Singer-Heruti, Roni (May 18, 2006). "Rabbi Mordechai Gafni accused of sexually exploiting women". Haaretz. Retrieved 2008-01-13. 
  19. ^ Gafni, Marc (2007). "Why I Signed the Letter". Retrieved 2008-07-25. 
  20. ^ a b Bell, Jeff; Greta Belanger deJong (July 2008). "Trial by Internet: An archetypal spiritual drama" (PDF). Catalyst Magazine (Salt Lake City, Utah: Catalyst Magazine) 27 (7): 20–25. Retrieved 2008-07-25. 
  21. ^ Gafni, Marc (2007). "Polygraph Tests". Retrieved 2008-12-30. 
  22. ^ Gafni, Marc (2007). "Professional Evaluations". Retrieved 2008-12-30. 

External links

Wikimedia Foundation. 2010.

Игры ⚽ Поможем написать реферат

Look at other dictionaries:

  • Mordechai Gafni — Infobox Person name = Mordechai Gafni image size = caption = birth name = Marc Winiarz birth date = birth year and age|1961 birth place = Pittsfield, Massachusetts nationality = American other names = Marc Gafni, Mark Gafni, Mordechai Winiarz,… …   Wikipedia

  • List of ad-hoc routing protocols — An Ad hoc routing protocol is a convention or standard that controls how nodes come to agree which way to route packets between computing devices in a mobile ad hoc network (MANET).In ad hoc networks , nodes do not have a priori knowledge of… …   Wikipedia

  • List of ad hoc routing protocols — An ad hoc routing protocol is a convention, or standard, that controls how nodes decide which way to route packets between computing devices in a mobile ad hoc network . In ad hoc networks, nodes are not familiar with the topology of their… …   Wikipedia

  • Agrobacterium — Taxobox color = lightgrey name = Agrobacterium image width = 200px regnum = Bacteria phylum = Proteobacteria classis = Alpha Proteobacteria ordo = Rhizobiales familia = Rhizobiaceae genus = Agrobacterium subdivision ranks = Species subdivision =… …   Wikipedia

  • ART AND CALLIGRAPHY — Israeli sculptor. The gates contain themes of the menorah, the Hebrew letter shin, a tree, and praying hands. Iron. Photo: David Harris. ) Ornamental entrance gates to the Israel President s Residence, 1971, by Bezalel Schatz (1912–1978), Israeli …   Encyclopedia of Judaism

  • Agrobacterium tumefaciens — A. tumefaciens attaching itself to a carrot cell Scientific classification Kingdom: Bacteria …   Wikipedia

Share the article and excerpts

Direct link
Do a right-click on the link above
and select “Copy Link”