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How to transform the model of twentieth-century Jewish institutions into twenty-first-century relational communities offering meaning and purpose, belonging and blessing.
"What really matters is that we care about the people we seek to engage. When we genuinely care about people, we will not only welcome them; we will listen to their stories, we will share ours, and we will join together to build a Jewish community that enriches our lives." from the Introduction
Membership in Jewish organizations is down. Day school enrollment has peaked. Federation campaigns are flat. The fastest growing and second largest category of Jews is Just Jewish. Young Jewish adults are unengaged and aging baby boomers are disengaging. Yet, in the era of Facebook, people crave face-to-face community.
It's all about relationships. With this simple, but profound idea, noted educator and community revitalization pioneer Dr. Ron Wolfson presents practical strategies and case studies to transform the old model of Jewish institutions into relational communities. He sets out twelve principles of relational engagement to guide Jewish lay leaders, professionals and community members in transforming institutions into inspiring communities whose value-proposition is to engage people and connect them to Judaism and community in meaningful and lasting ways."
The late twentieth century has witnessed the emergence in every religious tradition of a strain of threatening and militant fundamentalism, yet, significantly, fundamentalists remain beyond the comprehension of the rest of the world. In 'The Battle for God' Karen Armstrong explains brilliantly and perceptively how and why their understanding of religion and society differs so starkly from that of their contemporaries.
"The quality of this remarkable book lies as much in its detail as in its sweeping vision… Fundamentalism cannot be put down by force. If it is to be defeated, it must first be understood. This wise and balanced book makes a significant contribution to such an understanding."
"The spectre of religious fundamentalism haunts our world, and most of us are not merely terrified, but puzzled by it… We need a patient guide… Karen Armstrong is this guide. Her new book is just what Westerners need at this junction in history."
"Armstrong displays all her usual talents: she has an eye for colourful evidence, a wonderful gift for clarity of exposition and an unerring sense of pace and voice in narrative… In her account of the late nineteenth century and the twentieth every line counts and every story grips."
"A remarkable book… the self-evidence of religious fundamentalism's role in recent history gives this book a power and relevance which make for truly compulsive reading… for the reader with even a marginal interest in religion or politics, it is an essential purchase"
"Her book should do so much to de-demonize fundamentalism and thus allow us to take it seriously and devise strategies for coping with it… humane and thoughtful"
While there are many books on hermeneutics, Graeme Goldsworthy's perception is that evangelical contributions often do not give sufficient attention to the vital relationship between hermeneutics and theology, both systematic and biblical. In this new paperback edition of Gospel-Centered Hermeneutics, Goldsworthy moves beyond a reiteration of the usual arguments to concentrate on the theological questions of presuppositions, and the implications of the Christian gospel for hermeneutics. In doing so, he brings fresh perspectives on some well-worn pathways. Part I examines the foundations and presuppositions of evangelical belief, particularly with regard to biblical interpretation. Part II offers a selective overview of important hermeneutical developments from the sub-apostolic age to the present, as a means of identifying some significant influences that have been alien to the gospel. Part III evaluates ways and means of reconstructing truly gospel-centered hermeneutics. Goldsworthy's aim throughout is to commend the much-neglected role of biblical theology in hermeneutical practice, with pastoral concern for the people of God as they read, interpret and seek to live by his written Word.
A wide-ranging look at the history of Western thinking since the seventeenth century on the purpose of the Jewish people in the past, present, and future What is the purpose of Jews in the world? The Bible singles out the Jews as God's "chosen people," but the significance of this special status has been understood in many different ways over the centuries. What Are Jews For? traces the history of the idea of Jewish purpose from its ancient and medieval foundations to the modern era, showing how it has been central to Western thinking on the meanings of peoplehood for everybody. Adam Sutcliffe delves into the links between Jewish and Christian messianism and the association of Jews with universalist and transformative ideals in modern philosophy, politics, literature, and social thought. The Jews have been accorded a crucial role in both Jewish and Christian conceptions of the end of history, when they will usher the world into a new epoch of unity and harmony. Since the seventeenth century this messianic underlay to the idea of Jewish purpose has been repeatedly reconfigured in new forms. From the political theology of the early modern era to almost all domains of modern thought-religious, social, economic, nationalist, radical, assimilationist, satirical, and psychoanalytical-Jews have retained a close association with positive transformation for all. Sutcliffe reveals the persistent importance of the "Jewish Purpose Question" in the attempts of Jews and non-Jews alike to connect the collective purpose of particular communities to the broader betterment of humanity. Shedding light on questions of exceptionalism, pluralism, and universalism, What Are Jews For? explores an intricate question that remains widely resonant in contemporary culture and political debate.
Take your child on a colorful adventure to share the many ways Jewish people celebrate Shabbat around the world. Shabbat Shalom Beginning in an old Jerusalem market Friday morning, shopping for foods to make Shabbat meals specialSetting a beautiful Sabbath table in Australia Friday afternoonLighting Shabbat candles with a family in TurkeySinging zemirot with relatives in RussiaMaking hamotzi as a congregation in the United StatesParading the Torah scrolls at Shabbat morning services in a synagogue in GermanyRelaxing in the peace of Shabbat day in CanadaEnjoying a special Sabbath afternoon meal in Morocco
From Israel to Thailand, from Ethiopia to Argentina, you and your children are invited to share the diverse Sabbath traditions that come alive in Jewish homes and synagogues around the world each week and to celebrate life with Jewish people everywhere."
The first exhaustive treatment of Eastern European Jewish music tracing its roots from biblical times through its zenith in the nineteenth century to its decline in the late twentieth century. Sholom Kalib has taken on the crucial task of collecting, analyzing, and systematically presenting in over 160 examples a magnificent tradition to future generations of cantors, scholars of Jewish music, and music enthusiasts worldwide. Traditionally, this body of music was a source of great strength, stability, and inspiration to Eastern European Jews amid the uncertainties and upheavals of their everyday lives. With this volume the author reacquaints acculturated Jews with a vital and largely unknown part of their heritage. Comprehensive in breadth and scope, the book will serve as a standard scholarly reference for musicians, cantors, and musicologists.
Although the archaeological evidence indicates a prosperous and thriving Galilee in the early first century CE, the Gospel texts suggest a society under stress, where the rich were flourishing at the expense of the poor. In this multi-disciplinary study, Rosemary Margaret Luff contributes to current debates concerning the pressures on early first-century Palestinian Jews, particularly with reference to socio-economic and religious issues. She examines Jesus within his Jewish environment in order to understand why he rose to prominence when he did, and what motivated him to persevere with his mission. Luff's study includes six carefully-constructed essays that examine Early Christian texts against the wider background of late Second Temple Judaic literature, together with the material evidence of Galilee and Judea (Jerusalem). Synthesizing a wide range of archaeological and textual data for the first time, she offers new insights into the depth of social discontent and its role in the rise of Christianity.
A spiritual companion for those grieving infertility, pregnancy loss, or stillbirth, bringing solace from Jewish tradition. "This book begins where the others leave off. While the doctors do what they must do, when it is time for us to wait, or hope, or cry, or sleep, or pray, it is time for this book. The passages found within are drawn from the rich pool of spiritual responses that Judaism possesses. They reach out to us and embolden us to join our voices to the ancient prayers designed to get us through the night." from the Introduction Enables those frustrated and pained in their attempts at parenthood to mourn the loss of a pregnancy or infertility through the prayers, rituals, and meditations of the Jewish tradition. This new edition updated and expanded includes guided questions and pages on which to add personal reflections of your own emotions and experiences along the path toward parenting."
A window into the Jewish idea of responsibility to care for the
The concept of repairing the world ("tikkun olam") is an integral part of Jewish life. It helps shape Jewish social and family relationships, and even mandates how Jews should speak to others. But why is it important for Christians to understand this Jewish approach to life? And what kind of impact can understanding this fundamental aspect of Judaism have on Christians seeking to develop a deeper understanding of their own faith? With insight and wisdom, award-winning author Rabbi Elliot Dorff provides an accessible, honest and thorough exploration of this important Jewish concept. With easy-to-understand explanations of Jewish terms, practices and history, each chapter explores a different facet touched by the tradition of "tikkun loam." Rabbi Dorff also addresses parallel themes and practices in the Christian tradition, helping you better understand the roots of Christianity and how the fundamentals of Judaism relate and reflect your own aspirations to repair the world. Caring for the Poor The Power of Words The Ministry of Presence Duties of Spouses to Each Other Children s Duties to Their Parents Parent s Duties to Their Children The Traditional Jewish Vision of the Ideal World
In the Second-Temple period non-Jews were attracted to Judaism's communal life, religious observance and theological imagination. On the Jewish side, this was matched by the development of several discrete "patterns of universalism"-ways in which Jews were able to conceive of a positive place for Gentiles within their symbolic world. In this book Terence Donaldson collects and comments on all of the texts (to the end of the second Jewish rebellion in 135 CE) that deal with Gentile sympathizers, proselytes, ethical monotheists and participants in end-time redemption. In impressive detail, Donaldson identifies, defines, and describes these "patterns of universalism."
This book is a comprehensive account of how the Jews became a diaspora people. The term 'diaspora' was first applied exclusively to the early history of the Jews as they began settling in scattered colonies outside of Israel-Judea during the time of the Babylonian exile; it has come to express the characteristic uniqueness of the Jewish historical experience. Zeitlin retraces the history of the Jewish diaspora from the ancient world to the present, beginning with expulsion from their ancestral homeland and concluding with the Holocaust and the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
In mapping this process, Zeitlin argues that the Jews' religious self-understanding was crucial in enabling them to cope with the serious and recurring challenges they have had to face throughout their history. He analyses the varied reactions the Jews encountered from their so-called 'host peoples', paying special attention to the attitudes of famous thinkers such as Luther, Hegel, Nietzsche, Wagner, Montesquieu, Voltaire, Rousseau, the Left Hegelians, Marx and others, who didn't shy away from making explicit their opinions of the Jews.
This book will be of interest to students and scholars of Jewish studies, diaspora studies, history and religion, as well as to general readers keen to learn more about the history of the Jewish experience.
In Hebrew and Arabic, the words Amen and Amin?the most frequent conclusions of prayers?derive from cognate consonantal roots. The Greek and other versions of the Hebrew Bible continue to use the word Amen; the New Testament follows suit. The basic meaning of Amen or Amin in all three scriptures is the same, a passionate address to God: 'I entrust myself to You; I put my faith in You, I keep faith with You.' It is the cry of a person struggling to grasp and be grasped by God. Amen: Jews, Christians, and Muslims Keep Faith with God examines faith as it is understood by Jews, Christians and Muslims; it does not aim to be a work of systematic theology or a lengthy explication of the contents of different faith traditions. It offers Jews, Christians and Muslims several approaches to faith as a category of human experience open to God: a faithful God who reaches out to grasp the faithful human being at the same time that the faithful human being reaches out to grasp a faithful God. This two-sided faith, divine and human, lies at the center of each faith tradition. The book examines faith as one might examine a gem, gazing at different facets in turn. In this process, Patrick Ryan, a Jesuit who has lived for decades in Africa as well as in the United States, shares the personal reflections of one who has tried to live a life of faith not only in the company of fellow Christians but also in the company of Jews and Muslims, friends for many years. The work as a whole, and each chapter within it, begins and ends with reflections shared with an anonymous but real person who has struggled with faith for all that time and who continues the struggle with faith even today.
"The simple and practical wisdom I have gained by reading this book and studying Kabbalah is immeasurable."
"This book will inspire your soul. Michael Berg has accomplished the monumental task of translating the eternal truths of life into spiritual common sense. Without a doubt, The Way will become one of the sacred texts of your own life."
The spiritual way of Kabbalah has grown from a hidden treasure into a widespread mainstream movement that has helped people from every walk of life, all around the world, to improve their lives. In this bestselling book, Michael Berg of The Kabbalah Centre–the world’s leading educational institution teaching the wisdom of Kabbalah–shows you how to recognize and understand the key spiritual laws in order to improve your life and the lives of everyone around you. The Way will teach you meditation and prayer techniques and how to reduce emotional chaos and increase personal harmony. At once groundbreaking and so clearly written that it is accessible to anyone following any spiritual path, The Way provides the spiritual power tools to attain true fulfillment and happiness.
In Biblical Theology, Ben Witherington, III, examines the theology of the Old and New Testaments as a totality. Going beyond an account of carefully crafted Old and New Testament theologies, he demonstrates the ideas that make the Bible a sacred book with a unified theology. Witherington brings a distinctive methodology to this study. Taking a constructive approach, he first examines the foundations of the writers' symbolic universe - what they thought and presupposed about God - and how they revealed those thoughts through the narratives of the Old and New Testaments. He also shows how the historical contexts and intellectual worlds of the Old and New Testaments conditioned their narratives, and, in the process, created a large coherent Biblical world view, one that progressively reveals the character and action of God. Thus, the Yahweh of the Old Testament, the Son in the Gospels, and the Father, Son, and Spirit in the New Testament writings are viewed as persons who are part of the singular divine identity. Witherington's progressive revelation approach allows each part of the canon to be read in its original context and with its original meaning.
This book analyzes and describes the development and aspects of imagery techniques, a primary mode of mystical experience, in twentieth century Jewish mysticism. These techniques, in contrast to linguistic techniques in medieval Kabbalah and in contrast to early Hasidism, have all the characteristics of a full screenplay, a long and complicated plot woven together from many scenes, a kind of a feature film. Research on this development and nature of the imagery experience is carried out through comparison to similar developments in philosophy and psychology and is fruitfully contextualized within broader trends of western and eastern mysticism.
This study takes a fresh look at the influential French philosopher, arguing that Jaques Derrida cannot be fully understood without considering the Jewish dimension of his thought, and offering a re-appraisal of his work.
A rediscovered masterpiece by the 16 million copy bestselling author of Man’s Search For Meaning
Just months after his liberation from Auschwitz renowned psychiatrist Viktor E. Frankl delivered a series of talks revealing the foundations of his life-affirming philosophy. The psychologist, who would soon become world famous, explained his central thoughts on meaning, resilience and his conviction that every crisis contains opportunity.
Published here for the very first time in English, Frankl's words resonate as strongly today as they did in 1946. Despite the unspeakable horrors in the camp, Frankl learnt from his fellow inmates that it is always possible to say ‘yes to life’ – a profound and timeless lesson for us all.
With an introduction by Daniel Goleman.
Rabbi Stern, the master of modern Jewish liturgy, offers the Passover seder that runs itself in this revision of his best-selling classic, Gates of Freedom. The text is clearly marked so that families with young children can shorten the service, while those who want to deepen their seder experience can enhance it with both traditional and contemporary readings. A dazzling array of commentaries, anecdotes, poems, and songs enrich the Gates of Freedom service, and the compelling computer-generated graphics add the exciting dimension of visual interpretation. Rabbi Eugene Borowitz's inspiring Introduction sets the stage for the evening drama. All the Passover traditions are explained with clarity and insight. Seder participants will find renewed delight in the Passover celebration, as they experience the familiar rituals and text, and discover new meaning, relevance, and inspiration.
'Whoever listens to a witness, becomes a witness.' - Elie Wiesel When Nazi occupiers arrived in Greece in 1941, it was the beginning of a horror that would reverberate through generations. In the city of Salonica (Thessaloniki), almost 50,000 Jews were sent to Nazi concentration camps during the war, and only 2,000 returned. A Jewish doctor named Isaac Matarasso and his son escaped imprisonment and torture at the hands of the Nazis and joined the resistance. After the city's liberation they returned to rebuild Salonica and, along with the other survivors, to grapple with the near-total destruction of their community. Isaac was a witness to his Jewish community's devastation, and the tangled aftermath of grief, guilt and grace as survivors returned home. Talking Until Nightfall presents his account of the tragedy and his moving tribute to the living and the dead. His story is woven together with his son Robert's memories of being a frightened teenager spared by a twist of fate, with an afterword by his grandson Francois that looks back on the survivors' stories and his family's place in history. This slim, wrenching account of loss, survival, and the strength of the human spirit will captivate readers and ensure the Jews of Salonica are never forgotten.
Read our customer guide The Torah is the essence of Jewish tradition; it inspires each successive generation. The current JPS translation, based on classical and modern sources, is acclaimed for its fidelity to the ancient Hebrew.
Learn how to actively read and understand the Hebrew Bible and its significant literary, historical, and thematic meanings with the help of this bestselling introduction to the Old Testament and its companion website. READING THE OLD TESTAMENT: INTRODUCTION TO THE HEBREW BIBLE, Fourth Edition uses a wide selection of maps, charts, timelines, and artwork to ensure your understanding. Chapter-opening summaries and reading guides direct your attention to key concepts, historical contexts, and relevant Biblical passages. The accompanying website provides the entire text of the Bible, the entire text of the textbook, and an interactive study guide with numerous study tools for your convenience.
For many Jewish people in the mid-twentieth century, Zionism was an unquestionable tenet of what it meant to be Jewish. Seventy years later, a growing number of American Jews are instead expressing solidarity with Palestinians, questioning old allegiances to Israel. How did that transformation come about? What does it mean for the future of Judaism? In Days of Awe, Atalia Omer examines this shift through interviews with a new generation of Jewish activists, rigorous data analysis, and fieldwork within a progressive synagogue community. She highlights people politically inspired by social justice campaigns including the Black Lives Matter movement and protests against anti-immigration policies. These activists, she shows, discover that their ethical outrage at US policies extends to Israel's treatment of Palestinians. For these American Jews, the Jewish history of dispossession and diaspora compels a search for solidarity with liberation movements. This shift produces innovations within Jewish tradition, including multi-racial and intersectional conceptions of Jewishness and movements to reclaim prophetic Judaism. Charting the rise of such religious innovation, Omer points toward the possible futures of post-Zionist Judaism.
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