Rabbi Nathan Lopes Cardozo
Rabbi Nathan Lopes Cardozo was born in Holland, and now lives in Israel. A
sought-after lecturer on the international stage for both Jewish and
non-Jewish audiences, Cardozo is known for his original and often fearlessly
controversial insights into Judaism. His ideas are widely debated in social
media, blogs, books and other forums.
Born in 1946, Nathan was named after his father’s youngest brother who was
killed in the Holocaust. His father was a secular Jew who was proud of his
Portuguese Jewish origin. His mother was an orphan who, when her Christian
parents died, was raised by his father’s Jewish family, and though not Jewish,
she was an integrated part of the community and spoke their language. Later
on, she saved her husband and his family during the Holocaust by hiding
them in her apartment in the center of Amsterdam while the city was under
Nazi occupation. Many times she risked her life by convincing the Nazis that
her husband and family were already taken to the concentration camps.
Due to his birth to a non-Jewish mother Cardozo was technically not
halakhically Jewish either (natural-born Jewish status is conferred through
one’s mother), but at age sixteen he formally converted to Judaism through
the Amsterdam Rabbinate.
Cardozo spent 12 years studying at various Haredi Yeshivas, including
Gateshead Talmudical College. He received his semikhah (rabbinic
ordination) from Rabbi Aryeh Leib Gurwitz, Rosh yeshiva of Gateshead.
Rabbi Cardozo is the Founder and Dean of the David Cardozo Academy and
the Bet Midrash of Avraham Avinu in Jerusalem. Rabbi Cardozo is the author
of 13 books and numerous articles in both English and Hebrew. Rabbi
Cardozo heads a Think Tank focused on finding new Halachic and
philosophical approaches to religious issues facing the Jewish People and the
State of Israel