Introducing Judaism

Introducing Judaism is the ideal starting point for students beginning their studies of this fascinating religion. Eliezer Segal takes a historical approach, focusing on religious aspects of Judaism, and introducing themes as they emerge from authentic Jewish documents. Students will gain an understanding of how Judaism is lived by its adherents and the historical and geographical diversity of Jewish beliefs and practices.

The book has a clear and accessible structure. Part One presents the historical context of Judaism, from the Biblical era, through the Medieval period and on to modern Judaism. Part Two surveys the distinctive values and beliefs of Judaism, including attitudes to God, Covenant, Israel, exile and homeland, the Torah, and its commandments, while Part Three presents Jewish Practices and Institutions, engaging with topics such as daily life, worship, temple and synagogue, law, ethics and education, the afterlife, and resurrection.

Throughout the book, Eliezer Segal stresses the diversity of interpretations that have been generated by historical circumstances, differing theological and ideological outlooks, and the spiritual creativity of the religious community. Attention is paid to various models of piety, mysticism, scholasticism and folk religion, including the impact of Judaism on the daily life of believers and the experiences of Jewish women.

Illustrated throughout, Introducing Judaism includes text boxes, a glossary, and a list of further reading to aid students’ understanding and revision, providing a thorough overview of one of the first recorded monotheistic faiths and one of the oldest religions still practiced today.

The accompanying website for this book can be found at www.routledge.com/textbooks/9780415440097.


Spiritual Boredom

Break the Surface of Spiritual Boredom to Find the Reservoir of Meaning Within

We need to be bored. When we get bored and take responsibility for our boredom, we arrive at a new level of interest, introspection, or action that has been stirred by the very creativity used to keep boredom away. The relationship between boredom and creativity is far from accidental. Creative minds are often stimulated by boredom, regarding it as a brain rest until the next great idea looms on the horizon of the otherwise unoccupied mind.”from Chapter 10″

Boredom is a crisis of our age. In religious terms, boredom is sapping spirituality of its mystical and wholesome benefits, slowly corroding our ability to recognize blessing and beauty in our lives, to experience wonder and awe. What happens when our need for constant newness minimizes our interest in prayer, learning, and the mysteries of nature?

This intriguing look at spiritual boredom helps you understand just what this condition is, particularly as it relates to Judaism, and what the absence of inspiration means to the present and future of the Jewish tradition. Drawing insights from psychology, philosophy, and theology as well as ancient Jewish texts, Dr. Erica Brown explores the many ways boredom manifests itself within Judaismin the community, classroom, and synagogueand shows its potentially powerful cultural impact on a faith structure that advises sanctifying time, not merely passing it.


Jewish Literacy

What does it mean to be a Jew? How does one begin to answer so extensive a question?

In this insightful and completely updated tome, esteemed rabbi and bestselling author Joseph Telushkin helps answer the question of what it means to be a Jew, in the largest sense. Widely recognized as one of the most respected and indispensable reference books on Jewish life, culture, tradition, and religion, Jewish Literacy covers every essential aspect of the Jewish people and Judaism. In 352 short and engaging chapters, Rabbi Telushkin discusses everything from the Jewish Bible and Talmud to Jewish notions of ethics to antisemitism and the Holocaust; from the history of Jews around the world to Zionism and the politics of a Jewish state; from the significance of religious traditions and holidays to how they are practiced in daily life. Whether you want to know more about Judaism in general or have specific questions you’d like answered, Jewish Literacy is sure to contain the information you need.

Rabbi Telushkin’s expert knowledge of Judaism makes the updated and revised edition of Jewish Literacy an invaluable reference. A comprehensive yet thoroughly accessible resource for anyone interested in learning the fundamentals of Judaism, Jewish Literacy is a must for every Jewish home.


Women’s Spirituality

Women’s Spirituality: Contemporary Feminist Approaches to Judaism, Christianity, Islam and Goddess Worship comes directly out of women’s grassroots efforts to understand and transform their spiritual traditions. It is a comprehensive account of the discussions, arguments, perspectives and approaches of contemporary women in Canada toward spirituality and the monotheistic religions. The author presents a concise history of each religion, discusses normative practices and focuses on the roles, rituals and rights of contemporary women as they accommodate to and deal with their respective religions. Women’s Spirituality deals with women’s encounters with spirituality within the framework of Judaism, Christianity and Islam and outside of this framework within the new religions of contemporary Goddess worship. Women’s spirituality flourishes in all traditions, however male-dominated they may be. Somehow, women find, or make, space in which they can express their deepest spiritual feelings and thoughts. The aims of this book are to acquaint readers briefly with the range of expressions of women’s spirituality; to give an accessible report on feminist theology, the theology that takes into account women’s experiences; and, in particular, to examine how feminist theologians treat the central issues in three old traditions and one new one. An updated, and revised edition of Stuckey’s successful 1998 book, Feminist Spirituality: An Introduction to Feminist Theology in Judaism, Christianity, Islam and Feminist Goddess Worship, this book will be useful to anyone unfamiliar with the work of feminists within any or all of the three monotheistic traditions that have been so crucial to shaping western attitudes to and treatment of women. The book an introduction to one of the fastest-growing new forms of women’s spirituality in the West: Feminist Goddess Worship.


The Book of Jewish Belief

This is a Comprehensive”how-To”and”know All”guide to Jewish faith and values, written by great Jewish Theologian.It contains answers to questions about God, Torah, mitzvot, holidays, festivals, rituals, Jewish symbols, philosophy, mysticism, and more.


Basic Judaism

Concise and elegant, this is a book about the Jewish religion – not about the Jewish culture or Zionism, but about those beliefs, ideals, and practices that make up the historic Jewish faith. Including both the modernist and the traditionalist view in his exploration, Rabbi Steinberg discusses the Torah, what Judaism says about God and the relationship, and what exists in the Kingdom of God. He also talks about the laws that define Judaism, the practices and rituals that sustain it, and the synagogue and the rabbinate that support it.

For all students of Judaism – be they practicing Jews, uncommitted Jews, or curious non-Jews – Rabbi Steinberg offers a brilliant chance to understand what the Jewish faith is, why it has elicited such intense devotion, and why it remains such a mighty force in the lives of its believers and, beyond them, the world.