Inclusion and the Soul of a Synagogue

by Rabbi Jeremy Kridel From the Autumn 2017 issue of Jewish Currents “WE DON’T REALLY think we can do that.” So ends my wife’s phone conversation with staff at a Jewish camp and after-school program. What they could not do was include our son, then 8, in their activities. They were unprepared to provide services for […]

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Why Be Anything? Why Be Jewish?

THE JEWISH-UNIVERSALIST DILEMMA by Adam Chalom from the Autumn 2017 issue of Jewish Currents   ONE HUNDRED and thirty years ago, a new language was born. It had regular rules and simple grammar, and could be learned in one tenth the time it takes to learn English. The inventor of Esperanto was a Polish Jewish doctor […]

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The Six Holiday Components of Khanike

by Judith Seid Adapted from her God-Optional Judaism, Blue Thread Books, 2017. Statue of Liberty Menorah by Mae Rockland Tupa. KHANIKE IS RICH in meaning, with all six classic holiday components: primitive, seasonal, historical, religious, national, and ethical. The primitive and seasonal components have to do with the winter solstice. Like many cultures, the Jews […]

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Erich Fromm’s Humanistic Judaism

THE MODERN MEANING OF IDOLATRY by Sam K. Rodin From the Summer 2017 issue of Jewish Currents   FOR THE GREAT humanist thinker Erich Fromm, the Hebrew Bible was a revolutionary book. “Its theme,” he wrote (in You Shall Be As Gods, 1966), “is the liberation of [humanity] from the incestuous ties to blood and soil, […]

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My Path to Atheism

by Alan Rutkowski I RECENTLY HAD an epiphany: I don’t believe in God. For a very long time — most of my life, actually — I sort of thought I did. Religion has played a big part in my life. For some reason my mother, who was not religious at all, sent my sister and […]

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July 21: Sherwin Wine and Humanistic Judaism

Rabbi Sherwin Wine, the founder of Humanistic Judaism and the key builder of its institutions, died at 79 in an automobile accident in Morocco on this date in 2007. Ordained by the Reform movement, Wine founded the Birmingham Temple, the first humanistic synagogue, outside Detroit in 1963. He was also the founder of the Society […]

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