The Rituals & Practices of a Jewish Life: A Handbook for Personal Spiritual Renewal

The Rituals & Practices of a Jewish Life: A Handbook for Personal Spiritual Renewal

by Kerry M. Olitzky, Joel Moskowitz
     
 

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An inspiring how-to guide to help you understand and participate in a Jewish spiritual life.

Across the spectrum of Jewish observance, people are seeking ways to give higher meaning to their spiritual lives—but how do you know where to begin, and what should you do first?

This easy-to-use handbook explains the why, what and how of ten specific

Overview

An inspiring how-to guide to help you understand and participate in a Jewish spiritual life.

Across the spectrum of Jewish observance, people are seeking ways to give higher meaning to their spiritual lives—but how do you know where to begin, and what should you do first?

This easy-to-use handbook explains the why, what and how of ten specific areas of Jewish ritual and practice. Each chapter provides you with guidance and background if you are just beginning to explore Jewish ritual and practice, and offers creative ways to deepen the meaning of Judaism in your daily life, even if you are experienced with ritual observance.

All of the chapters have personal stories of people who have taken on Jewish ritual, and will inspire you to consider how to infuse your life with the wisdom of Jewish tradition.

Editorial Reviews

From the Publisher

"Beautifully weaves together liberal Jewish perspectives on traditional practices. Jews who wish to deepen their practice will find both inspiration and instruction in this book."
Rabbi Debra Orenstein, editor, Lifecycles, Vol. 2: Jewish Women on Biblical Themes in Contemporary Life

“A wonderful guide to beginning a personal Jewish ritual practice. It offers both the steps to do and insightful stories of those who have found meaning in them. A terrific handbook for personal observance ... highly recommended!”
Dr. Ron Wolfson, author of The Art of Jewish Living series; cofounder, Synagogue 2/3000; vice president, University of Judaism

“Both resource and inspiration for ... daily Jewish ritual practice.... Excellent.”
Association of Jewish Libraries Newsletter

“Imbues ritual with spirit.... Weaves the personal, the spiritual, and the practical together in a lovely tapestry of meaning.”
Rabbi Karyn D. Kedar, Great Lakes Regional Director, UAHC; author of Our Dance with God: Finding Prayer, Perspective and Meaning in the Stories of Our Lives

“The authors, the essays, and the wisdom found here are first-rate. They will help your soul to soar.”
Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson, dean and vice president, Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies

Publishers Weekly
A life marked by ritual was previously the province of traditional Jews, but today, more and more liberal Jews are adopting the practices of kippah (yarmulke), tallith (prayer shawl), tefillin (phylacteries), mikvah (ritual bath), daily blessings, prayer and Torah study as paths to living with greater purpose. Liberal Jews may observe these rituals not because of their "commandedness," but because they are "intensely poetic expressions of being Jewish," writes Vanessa Ochs in her foreword. Though this system of discipline might seem oppressive to an outsider, it can bring people closer to God and to themselves, the editors suggest. Each of 10 chapters by a different rabbi, educator or leader focuses on a specific ritual; each includes personal testimony, basic how-to information, transliterated and translated blessings, step-by-step instructions and a bibliography. The struggles, dilemmas and rewards inherent in religious practice are vividly portrayed through humorous and poignant stories of family, coming of age, journeys, searching, rebellion, return and connection. The authors present rabbinic perspectives alongside feminist voices and nontraditional ways of observance (for instance, observing Shabbat by gardening, which is traditionally prohibited). One quibble: where the authors offer others' personal testimony in the midst of their own, the layout can be confusing. However, that one drawback doesn't detract from this practical, accessible and fascinating guide for those who want to enter Jewish ritual or further enrich their own practice. (Sept.) Copyright 2002 Cahners Business Information.

Product Details

ISBN-13:
9781580231695
Publisher:
Turner Publishing Company
Publication date:
07/01/2002
Pages:
272
Sales rank:
1,081,758
Product dimensions:
6.00(w) x 9.00(h) x 0.69(d)

Meet the Author

Rabbi Kerry M. Olitzky, named one of the fifty leading rabbis in North America by Newsweek, is well known for his inspiring books that bring the Jewish wisdom tradition into everyday life. He is executive director of Big Tent Judaism, formerly Jewish Outreach Institute, and is author of many books on Jewish spirituality, healing and Jewish religious practice, including Making a Successful Jewish Interfaith Marriage: The Big Tent Judaism Guide to Opportunities, Challenges and Resources; Introducing My Faith and My Community: The Jewish Outreach Institute Guide for a Christian in a Jewish Interfaith Relationship; Jewish Paths toward Healing and Wholeness: A Personal Guide to Dealing with Suffering; Grief in Our Seasons: A Mourner's Kaddish Companion; Twelve Jewish Steps to Recovery: A Personal Guide to Turning from Alcoholism & Other Addictions—Drugs, Food, Gambling, Sex...; Facing Cancer as a Family; Life's Daily Blessings: Inspiring Reflections on Gratitude for Every Day, Based on Jewish Wisdom; 100 Blessings Every Day: Daily Twelve Step Recovery Affirmations, Exercises for Personal Growth and Renewal Reflecting Seasons of the Jewish Year and Recovery from Codependance: A Jewish Twelve Step Guide to Healing Your Soul. He is also coauthor of Grandparenting Interfaith Grandchildren; Jewish Holidays: A Brief Introduction for Christians; Jewish Ritual: A Brief Introduction for Christians; Renewed Each Day, Vol. One—Genesis and Exodus: Daily Twelve Step Recovery Meditations; Renewed Each Day, Vol. Two—Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy: Daily Twelve Step Recovery Meditations Based on the Bible and coeditor of The Rituals and Practices of a Jewish Life: A Handbook for Personal Spiritual Renewal (all Jewish Lights).

Rabbi Kerry M. Olitzky is available to speak on the following topics:

  • The Jewish Twelve Step Path to Healing and Recovery
  • Sparks Beneath the Surface: A Spiritual Read on the Torah
  • Welcoming the Stranger in Our Midst
  • How to Nurture Jewish Grandchildren Being Raised in an Interfaith Family
  • Optimism for a Jewish Future

Click here to contact the author.

Rabbi Daniel Judson, spiritual leader of Temple Beth David of the South Shore in Canton, Massachusetts, is coeditor of The Rituals and Practices of a Jewish Life: A Handbook for Personal Spiritual Renewal and coauthor of The Jewish Pregnancy Book: A Resource for the Soul, Body and Mind during Pregnancy, Birth and the First Three Months (both Jewish Lights). He is a frequent guest speaker at both Jewish and Christian congregations.

Vanessa L. Ochs is the Ida and Nathan Kolodiz Director of Jewish Studies and associate professor of religious studies at the University of Virginia. A recipient of a fellowship in creative writing from the National Endowment of the Arts, she is author of several books, coauthor of The Jewish Dream Book: The Key to Opening the Inner Meaning of Your Dreams, and coeditor, with Rabbi Irwin Kula, of The Book of Jewish Sacred Practices: CLAL's Guide to Everyday & Holiday Rituals & Blessings (both Jewish Lights).

Vanessa L. Ochs is available to speak on the following topics:

  • Jewish Ritual Innovation
  • Haggadah
  • Jewish Feminism
  • What Makes a Jewish Home Jewish
  • Raising Kids with Jewish Values

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