A Rabbi’s Teachings on Recovery Find a Wide Audience

For six years, Rabbi [Shais] Taub, 37, has been teaching and writing about the spiritual component of recovery from addiction. He had begun within the Jewish community, specifically the Chabad movement, and yet providence or serendipity or destiny has brought him increasing recognition and influence well beyond it.

So it was that Father [Steven] Boes asked him to address a half-dozen staff members, some of them clergy and some of them therapists, who lead recovery programs at Boys Town. Once a refuge for children neglected or abandoned due primarily to poverty, it now deals extensively with boys and girls who have abused alcohol and drugs. And while Boys Town from its origin had been nondenominational and opposed to religious compulsion of any kind, it has always considered faith a central element for repairing damaged lives.

Over the course of 90 minutes with the Boys Town staff members, Rabbi Taub spoke of the Talmud, “Hamlet,” the Exodus narrative and the metaphor of the canary in the coal mine.

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