Akiva Tatz is a prominent
South African Orthodox Jewish rabbi, inspirational speaker and writer and is heavily involved in Orthodox Jewish outreach. He is also a physicianand world renown expert in Jewish Medical Ethics. [ [http://communitypress.cincinnati.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080702/NEWS05/807020332 Cincinnati Community Press, July 2, 2008] ]
Rabbi Dr. Akiva Tatz was born in
Johannesburg[ [http://www.jle.org.uk/showperson.php?id=1 Jewish Learning Exchange] ] to a very wealthy family; his family had many servants and he owned three motorcycles and a convertibleprior to his eighteenth birthday. [Gideon Shimoni, "Community and Conscience: The Jews in Apartheid South Africa", UPNE 2003, ISBN 1584653299 page 236.] He graduated from the University of Witwatersrand Medical School, graduating with distinction in surgery. [ [http://communitypress.cincinnati.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?AID=/20080702/NEWS05/807020332 Cincinnati Community Press, July 2, 2008] ] He then spent a year in St. Louis, Missourias an American Field Service Scholar and subsequently returned there for elective work in internal medicineat Washington University. [ [http://www.jmec.ch/speakers.html First International Conference on Jewish Medical Ethics - Speakers] ] He then served as a medical officer in the South African Defense Forces. [ [http://www.jewishworldreview.com/0906/tatz_beginnings.php3 Jewish World Review, September 19, 2006] ] After practicing in both South Africa and the United States, he moved to Israel, and worked both in private practiceas well as in a hospital setting in Jerusalem.
Although not raised as an observant Jew, Tatz would later rediscover Judaism and become a "
baal teshuva", or returnee. He is currently on staff at the Jewish Learning Exchange [ [http://www.jle.org.uk/showperson.php?id=1 Jewish Learning Exchange] ] and Ohr Somayach, [ [http://ohr.edu/web/tatzny.htm Ohr Somayach International] ] and in the past has been a guest lecturer at Gateways. [ [http://www.gatewaysonline.com/guests.asp Gateways - Guest Lecturers] ] He has become a recognized expert in matters of Jewish thought and philosophy, which he covers in his authored texts. Zoketsu Norman Fischer, former abbotof the San Francisco Zen Centerand founder of and teacher at the Everday Zen Foundation, describes Tatz's work, "Letters to a Buddhist Jew", as "a fascinating book - the most serious contribution in this field to date." [ [http://communitypress.cincinnati.com/apps/pbcs.dll/article?His most famous work is worlmask. AID=/20080702/NEWS05/807020332 Cincinnati Community Press, July 2, 2008] ]
Tatz is both the founder and director of the Jerusalem Medical Ethics Forum, whose purpose is to promote knowledge of Jewish medical ethics internationally, giving lectures worldwide [ [http://www.jmec.ch/main-program.html First International Conference on Jewish Medical Ethics] ] in Jewish thought and medical ethics, [ [http://www.jle.org.uk/showperson.php?id=1 Jewish Learning Exchange] ] as well as on modern applications in medicine. [ [http://lists.med.nyu.edu/pipermail/som-jsa/2007-April/000056.html Guest Speaker at NYU Medical Center,
May 3, 2007] ] He is also involved with the Jerusalem Center for Research in Medicine and Halacha, often speaking at their annual European events. [ [http://www.j-c-r.org/programs.html Jerusalem Center for Research - Medicine and Halacha] ]
He currently resides in
London, England. [ [http://jewsbychoice.org/about/contributors/ Jewsbychoice.org - David Gottlieb] ]
Tatz's works have been translated into Spanish, French and Portuguese [ [http://www.jle.org.uk/showperson.php?id=1 Jewish Learning Exchange] ] and Russian: [ [http://www.judaism.com/bio.asp?author=Akiva%20Tatz Judaism.com] ]
* "Living Inspired" (
Targum Press, 1993)
* "Worldmask" (Targum Press, 1995)
* "Letters to a Buddhist Jew" (Targum Press, 2004)
* "Anatomy of a Search" (1987) - Biographical book on how Tatz found religion and became a "baal teshuva".
* "The Thinking Jewish Teenager's Guide to Life" (
Targum Press, 1999)
* [http://www.tatz.cc/bio.htm Biography at Rabbi Dr. Tatz's site]
* [http://www.targum.com/section.php/71/1/tatz--rabbi-akiva Books by Rabbi Dr. Akiva Tatz]
* [http://www.simpletoremember.com/audio/Rabbi_Akiva_Tatz.html Lectures and Articles by Rabbi Dr. Akiva Tatz]
* [http://torahmedia.com/author/Rabbi_Dr._Akiva~Tatz.html Inspirational lectures by Rabbi Dr. Akiva Tatz]
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