Current Lecture

image of lecture posterImagining Better Health Care: Can Counterfactual ("What if...") Learning by Analogy from the Bible Help?


Dr. Abraham (Rami) Rudnick


Wednesday October 23rd, 2019, 7 pm

Alumni Hall, Academic Building, University of King's College


headshot of Dr. Abraham Rudnick

This year’s lecture will be presented by Dr. Abraham (Rami) Rudnick, a psychiatrist and philosopher. Dr. Rudnick is a Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and School of Occupational Therapy at Dalhousie University and the Clinical Director of the Nova Scotia Operational Stress Injury Clinic. He is a Canadian Certified Physician Executive, the Editor- in-Chief of the International Journal of Mental Health, and a recipient of many national and international awards.

Dr. Rudnick’s lecture will examine some promising aspects of creative and critical thinking such as learning from counterfactuals (using what if... examples) and learning by analogy (using similar issues in other areas of life). While these have not been sufficiently applied in health care, he will demonstrate how examples from the bible can be used to consider health care transformation in Canada. For example, Abraham’s decision making to sacrifice his son will be used to argue for transformation in forensic psychiatry. Noah’s process for selecting animals for the Ark will be used to argue for transformation in health care funding.


About the Lectureship

The Saul Green Memorial Lecture can address the intersection of Judaism, medicine or humanitarianism, all three of which Dr. Green was passionate about in his lifetime. It focuses on complex humanistic and ethical challenges.

Lecturership partners are Shaar Shalom Synagogue and the University of King's College. The Shaar Shalom Congregation is committed to learning, fellowship and community.

The lectureship has been endowed by a gift from the Green family to honour the memory of Dr. Saul Green and to inspire and knit together the congregation and the community of Halifax.

The University of King's College is Canada's oldest chartered university. A small and extraordinarily lively academic community, King's is known nationally and internationally for its highly acclaimed interdisciplinary programs in the humanities and journalism.


About Saul Green

To his loyal patients, he was simply known as Dr. Saul, or in many cases, Saulie. He was a dedicated practioner of medicine and surgery in Halifax for 50 years. Saul was a person of grace, compassion, integrity and good humour.

He was born in 1921 in Glace Bay to Russian-born immigrants. Saul graduated from Dalhousie University Medical School in 1945 after which he did a residency in general surgery. A fellow of the Royal College of Physicians and Surgeons of Canada as well as the American College of Surgeons, he was also a founding member of Shaar Shalom and a loyal citizen of Halifax, where he lived until he passed away in 2005.



Past Lectures

Lecture 2018

Dr. Sageev Oore
"The Electric Composer: Music, AI and being human"

Lecture 2017

Dr.  Bertha Fuchsman-Small
“Médecins Sans Frontières: Medical Humanitarian Activism and the Tension Between Principle and Pragmatism”

Lecture 2016

Dr George Elliott Clarke
"Race," Mental Health, and the Body Politic: Comments on Shakespeare's Theatricalization of these Interlocking Concerns“

Lecture 2015

Dr. David S. Goldbloom, OC, MD, FRCPC
Creativity and Mental Illness

Lecture 2014

Dr. T.J. “Jock” Murray, OC, ONS, MD, FRCPC, FAAN, MACP, FRCP, MCFP, LLD, DSc, DLitt, DFA, LLD, Professor Emeritus, Dalhousie University
Hippocrates, Maimonides and the Changing Nature of Medical Codes

Lecture 2013

Dr. Brian Goldman, host of CBC's White Coat Black Art radio program.
Empathy in Health Care

Lecture 2010

The Right Honourable Chief Justice Beverley McLachlin, P.C.
The Challenges of Mental Illness in the Justice System

Lecture 2007

Gary Goldsand, Clinical ethicist, Royal Alexandra Hospital, Edmonton, Alberta
Permission and Consent in Jewish Medical Ethics

Inaugural Lecture 2006

Dr. David Novak, The J. Richard and Dorothy Shiff Chair of Jewish Studies at the University of Toronto
The ethical issues of physcian-assisted suicide within a Jewish framework.



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