Does God Belong in the Bedroom?

Overview

Jewish sexual ethics for today.... We live in an age of sexual confusion. The traditional guidelines, evolved in simpler times, no longer answer all our modern questions. Does Judaism offer appropriate guidelines to the intimacy of the bedroom? Can we bridge the gap between tradition and the dilemmas of our time? In Does God Belong in the Bedroom? Rabbi Michael Gold turns to the Torah, the wisdom of the rabbis of the Talmud, the Midrash, and other classic Jewish sources. He traces traditional Jewish responses ...
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Overview

Jewish sexual ethics for today.... We live in an age of sexual confusion. The traditional guidelines, evolved in simpler times, no longer answer all our modern questions. Does Judaism offer appropriate guidelines to the intimacy of the bedroom? Can we bridge the gap between tradition and the dilemmas of our time? In Does God Belong in the Bedroom? Rabbi Michael Gold turns to the Torah, the wisdom of the rabbis of the Talmud, the Midrash, and other classic Jewish sources. He traces traditional Jewish responses through the ages and applies their lessons to the post-pill, AIDS-conscious world Jews live in today. Rabbi Gold explores the vast reservoir of rabbinic sources on sexuality, ranging from extreme asceticism to a frank celebration of love and sexuality. He demonstrates how those classical sources differ from Christian and modern secular ethics, examining such issues as marital, nonmarital, and extramarital sex; pornography; rape and incest; masturbation; homosexuality; birth control; abortion; new reproductive techniques; and sex education. More than a study of texts, Does God Belong in the Bedroom? is a frank and honest approach to sexual ethics. "I have tried to emphasize sources," says Rabbi Gold, "that see our sexual drive as God's gift, to be used to achieve both happiness and holiness." God does, indeed, belong in the bedroom.

Does Judaism offer appropriate guidelines to the intimacy of the bedroom? Using the Torah, the wisdom of the rabbis of the Talmud, the Midrash, and exploring the vast reservoir of rabbinic sources on sexuality, Rabbi Gold demonstrates how those classical sources differ from Christianity and modern secular ethics.

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Editorial Reviews

Jerusalem Post
Gold writes from a traditional perspective and yet with a liberal and compassionate heart. The book is a thought-provoking if brisk look at some of the most vexing -- and fascinating -- issues concerning Jewish tradition and sexual morality. It is written with clarity, directness and dignity, and Gold has a talent for presenting the apt illustration from the sources. There's a good deal here to think about for the rest of us.
Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Drawing on Jewish biblical and rabbinic sources for guidance, Gold, a Florida rabbi, outlines a Jewish sexual ethic, steering a middle course in this opinionated, lively discourse. He maintains that consensual sex outside of marriage can be caring and ethical, yet he maintains that it falls short of the Jewish ideal of holiness. His ``ladder of holiness'' has sexual fidelity in marriage as its top rung. Arguing that abortion is not desirable except in the most extreme situations, Gold urges the creation of a comprehensive support and counseling service to assist young, pregnant women. While condemning discrimination based on sexual orientation and urging compassion toward people with AIDS, Gold opposes official recognition of gay marriages. He favors adoption for couples with severe infertility problems, yet argues in favor of a woman's right to become a surrogate mother. Emphasizing that sexuality, properly understood, can be a means to both happiness and holiness, Gold offers sensible advice on such issues as rape, incest, birth control and how to raise sexually responsible children. (Sept.)
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Product Details

  • ISBN-13: 9780827604216
  • Publisher: Jewish Publication Society
  • Publication date: 10/1/1992
  • Edition description: 1st ed
  • Edition number: 1
  • Pages: 236
  • Product dimensions: 5.80 (w) x 8.70 (h) x 0.96 (d)

Table of Contents

Preface
1 God in the Bedroom 1
2 The Good, the Bad, and the Holy 17
3 Sex That Destroys 37
4 Is Living Together Immoral? 57
5 The Marital Bedroom 73
6 Sex Without Babies, Babies Without Sex 93
7 Judaism: Pro-Life and Pro-Choice 117
8 Gay and Jewish 135
9 Raising Sexually Responsible Children 161
10 Implications Beyond the Bedroom 181
Notes 187
Glossary 199
Bibliography 201
Index 203
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