I became a rabbi and joined the United States Navy after spending almost 30 years in the business world. My call sign at the air wing, which has since become my nickname, is Rabs. Now, having worked with thousands of Marines and sailors in Okinawa, Japan, during a Persian Gulf deployment with the carrier air wing for the USS RONALD REAGAN (CVN-76), at Submarine Squadron 11 at Naval Base Point Loma, and at Airborne Command, Control and Logistics Wing at Pt. Mugu, I share wisdom from Scripture, battle-tested ideas from the military, and profitable business concepts to aid your personal development, entrepreneurial aspirations, and help you become an Intentionalist.

Both in and outside the navy I speak and train on a regular basis. You can find information on my most requested talks and for starting the process of engaging me here.  I run Civilian Success SOP, a program for veterans transitioning to civilian life and I coach a small number of people one-on-one. If you are interested please contact me here.

In 2013 I founded the Institute for Living Intentionally (ILI), which is dedicated to helping people design balanced, purposeful lives. Seeking to provide mental and spiritual support for people leaving military life, our inaugural program is A HIGHER CALLING - Chaplains for Veterans, which provides no-cost, round-the-clock pastoral counseling to veterans and their family members.

I write extensively on military and social history.  Several of my articles are in Germany at War: 400 Years of Military HistoryThe Encyclopedia of World War I : A Political, Social, and Military History; and Russia at War: From the Mongol Conquest to Afghanistan, Chechnya, and Beyond, all published by ABC-Clio.

This is my personal blog. It is focused on #LivingIntentionally, figuring out what you want your life to be and then making that happen. I believe that you must have a mission to guide your goal setting, interactions with people, and life experiences.

I write about fitness, finances & entrepreneurship, relationships, resiliency (including the 3 Pillars of Fitness - the resiliency system I developed as a chaplain), transitions, matters of the soul, and occasionally on a topic that does not really fit into any of these categories, like dogs.

My mission is to help you become an Intentionalist by gaining insight into yourself and providing you with ways to improve how you work and live.

I post two or three times a week. Make sure you do not miss any of them by subscribing here.

My Top Posts

If you are new to my blog, you may want to take a look at my top five posts:

All of my posts can be seen or searched from my home page.

My Biography

The Institute for Living Intentionally, established in 2013, is an outgrowth of my work as a navy chaplain helping sailors and Marines deal with the demands of life in the military. In the course of various shipboard exercises and carrier deployments I created the 3 Pillars of Fitness™– Physical∞Mental∞Spiritual, to help them get and stay at peak performance.

My military service includes two active duty tours, first at Marine Corps Base, Camp Smedley D. Butler in Okinawa, Japan where after eighteen months I became Acting Deputy Base Chaplain, which usually requires 14 years of service. I administrated a department that includs eight chapels and a staff of fourteen people, while overseeing supply procurement, contracting, and travel, and providing direct care for 300 sailors of the dental clinics and 100 Marines assigned to or incarcerated in the brig. As well, I worked with thousands of Marines, family members, Department of Defense personnel, American expatriates, and local nationals living in Okinawa.

For my second tour, I was the Command Chaplain for Carrier Air Wing Fourteen at Naval Air Station Lemoore, California. During this tour I provided pastoral care to over 1,300 sailors and Marines at five locations in two states and during a seven-month shipboard combat deployment to the Persian Gulf and Arabian Sea. We also participated in the humanitarian assistance in the wake of the 2011 Japanese earthquake and tsunami.

In August 2012 I transferred to the navy reserves, assigned to a domestic emergency response unit in San Diego, CA. But I spent most of 2013 active duty as the chaplain for Submarine Squadron 11 based at Naval Base Point Loma helping submariners and their families prepare for deployment and deal with the long separations that are a part of the Silent Service. I got underway on submarines several times and I do mean UNDER way.

I spent most of 2014-2015 with Airborne Command, Control and Logistics Wing at Naval Air Station Pt. Mugu providing resiliency training and advising commanders on readiness, leadership, and ethics.

My awards and decorations include: Captain George P. Smith, USN Leadership Award, the Deep Submergence Insignia pin, the Navy and Marine Corps Commendation Medal with Three Gold Stars, the Navy and Marine Corps Achievement Medal, the Military Outstanding Volunteer Service Medal, and other campaign and service awards.

Prior to my military service, I spent twenty years running the firm I founded, Bemel Management Co., which performed real estate appraisal, brokerage, and management services. During that time we appraised over $1 billion worth of property, brokered and auctioned off more than $27 million worth of real estate, and managed a $25 million portfolio of assets.

I have 40 years of experience as a teacher, trainer, and speaker including 24 years conducting classes and seminars on a wide variety of business topics such as entrepreneurship, sales, finance, investments, real estate appraisal and brokerage, tax and regulatory matters, and personal finances. In 1989, I co-founded Paller Real Estate School in Agoura, California and established the ongoing curriculum. I was certified to instruct appraisal standards and ethics by the Congressionally-appointed national board, of which there were fewer than 400 nationwide. Currently, I am an instructor for UCLA Extension and I speak and write on the military, entrepreneurship, religion, and history.

Academically, I received rabbinic ordination from the Pirchei Shoshomin Semicha Program in Lakewood, New Jersey. I hold a Master of Religious Studies from Aish Hatorah Los Angeles and a Bachelor of Science in Architecture from the University of Southern California. Currently I am working on a Master of Library and Information Science at San Jose State University.

My Contact Information

You may contact me via email or follow me on Twitter or Facebook.


Keyvan Sherouz took my personal photographs. I get most of the photographs used to illustrate my blog from my wife’s and my personal collections and other open sources on the Internet.


This is my personal blog and as such all opinions expressed are mine. They do not represent those of any organization, such as the United States Navy or UCLA Extension, which employs me. All information I provide is on an as-is basis. I make no representation as to accuracy, completeness, currentness, suitability, or validity of any information on this blog and will not be liable for any errors, omissions, or delays in this information or any losses, injuries, or damages arising from its use.