Thinking Passover

Thinking Passover

by Ben Kamin
     
 

Passover books abound, but almost all are interpretative or supplemental manuals for conducting the Seder ceremonies. In Thinking Passover, Rabbi Ben Kamin goes much further to present an insightful, inspiring meditation on Jewish values that draws on both the historical drama of the original story and the contemporary relevance of the annual gathering together of…  See more details below

Overview

Passover books abound, but almost all are interpretative or supplemental manuals for conducting the Seder ceremonies. In Thinking Passover, Rabbi Ben Kamin goes much further to present an insightful, inspiring meditation on Jewish values that draws on both the historical drama of the original story and the contemporary relevance of the annual gathering together of families. Organized thematically and filled with real-life storie, Thinking Passover listens to the songs and the texts of the holidays, notes the family reunions and the life-cycle issues that accompany them, and offers a study of what Passover can mean for and offer to a contemporary family.
òThinking Passover is for Jewish families who seek each year to reaffirm their commitment to themselves and to their communities.
òOffers a unique perspective on the holiday.
òBen Kamin has a high profile in the Jewish community.

Editorial Reviews

Publishers Weekly - Publisher's Weekly
Because the holiday of Passover is laden with detail and ritual, many readers and authors focus on the how-to aspects of observance. Kamin, a senior rabbi at Temple-Tifereth Israel in Cleveland, offers a contemporary commentary instead. He calls Passover a celebration that "softens the heart" and "rejoins the generations" through the "curative" power of the Seder table. Personal reminiscences, spiritual reflections and historical information blend in essays such as "Matzoh and Memory" and "Cleaning the House, Cleaning the Soul." Through Kamin's universalist lens, Passover rituals and symbols turn into opportunities for meditations on family, empathy, equality, hunger, education, politics, peace, the American dream and God and the Bible. Though the essays sometimes border on the sermonic and the sentimental, Kamin's rich imagery and probing questions bring Passover values alive for modern families. (Mar.)
Library Journal
Passover is one of the most important holidays in the Jewish calendar, yet it depends on an individual's or a family's Jewish knowledge to make the Seder special. The current trend toward decreasing "Jewish cultural literacy" means that fewer people at the table are able to feel the relevance of the occasion. Kamin (Raising a Thoughtful Teenager, LJ 12/95), the senior rabbi of Cleveland's Temple-Tifereth Israel, has tried to fill this void with this work. It is not a handbook but reads as a poetic conversation to whet the reader's appetite and make Pesach meaningful. Kamin's work focuses especially on the elements of social responsibility relevant to Passover, from Pharaoh to the Civil Rights movement and giving to the hungry. Although his book does fill an important need, it will be less appealing to Orthodox or many Conservative Jews because of Kamin's offhand remarks on following Kashrut. However, for the majority of American Jews (either Reform or unaffiliated), the book serves as a useful meditation on the meaning of the holiday.-Andrew B. Wertheimer, Spertus Inst. of Jewish Studies, Chicago

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Product Details

ISBN-13:
9780525941316
Publisher:
Penguin Publishing Group
Publication date:
03/01/1997
Pages:
176
Product dimensions:
7.36(w) x 5.32(h) x 0.74(d)

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