A Letter in the Scroll: Understanding Our Jewish Identity and Exploring the Legacy of the World's Oldest Religion

A Letter in the Scroll: Understanding Our Jewish Identity and Exploring the Legacy of the World's Oldest Religion

by Jonathan Sacks
4.3 4

NOOK Book(eBook)

$5.99
View All Available Formats & Editions
Available on Compatible NOOK Devices and the free NOOK Apps.
Want a NOOK ? Explore Now

Overview

A Letter in the Scroll: Understanding Our Jewish Identity and Exploring the Legacy of the World's Oldest Religion by Jonathan Sacks

For too long, Jews have defined themselves in light of the bad things that have happened to them. And it is true that, many times in the course of history, they have been nearly decimated: when the First and Second Temples were destroyed, when the Jews were expelled from Spain, when Hitler proposed his Final Solution. Astoundingly, the Jewish people have survived catastrophe after catastrophe and remained a thriving and vibrant community. The question Rabbi Jonathan Sacks asks is, quite simply: How? How, in the face of such adversity, has Judaism remained and flourished, making a mark on human history out of all proportion to its numbers?
Written originally as a wedding gift to his son and daughter-in-law, A Letter in the Scroll is Rabbi Sacks's personal answer to that question, a testimony to the enduring strength of his religion. Tracing the revolutionary series of philosophical and theological ideas that Judaism created -- from covenant to sabbath to formal education -- and showing us how they remain compellingly relevant in our time, Sacks portrays Jewish identity as an honor as well as a duty.
The Ba'al Shem Tov, an eighteenth-century rabbi and founder of the Hasidic movement, famously noted that the Jewish people are like a living Torah scroll, and every individual Jew is a letter within it. If a single letter is damaged or missing or incorrectly drawn, a Torah scroll is considered invalid. So too, in Judaism, each individual is considered a crucial part of the people, without whom the entire religion would suffer. Rabbi Sacks uses this metaphor to make a passionate argument in favor of affiliation and practice in our secular times, and invites us to engage in our dynamic and inclusive tradition. Never has a book more eloquently expressed the joys of being a Jew.
This is the story of one man's hope for the future -- a future in which the next generation, his children and ours, will happily embrace the beauty of the world's oldest religion.

Product Details

ISBN-13: 9780743214964
Publisher: Free Press
Publication date: 02/14/2001
Sold by: SIMON & SCHUSTER
Format: NOOK Book
Pages: 256
Sales rank: 594,794
File size: 2 MB

About the Author


Rabbi Jonathan Sacks has been the Chief Rabbi of Britain and the Commonwealth since 1991. Educated at Cambridge and Oxford, he has held professorial chairs and congregational pulpits in England, Israel, and the United States. The author of eleven previous books, including Arguments for the Sake of Heaven and The Politics of Hope, he lives in London, England.

Customer Reviews

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

See All Customer Reviews

A Letter in the Scroll: Understanding Our Jewish Identity and Exploring the Legacy of the World's Oldest Religion 4.3 out of 5 based on 0 ratings. 4 reviews.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
A lovely, well written book. Very meaningful and one  i will read again.  The only issue I had with the book is that the author says "...most liberal democracies today are self-consciously pluralist, multiethnic and religiously diverse.  That does not mean anti-semitism no longer exists: it does. But neither now nor in the forseeable future can it hold center stage in the political arena. The days when die Judenfrage, "the Jewish Question", ....are gone."  Well, I had to look at when this book was written, and it was in 2000.  A lot has changed in ten years, a lot has changed in two years. I am finding "the Israeli-Jewish question" is rearing it's ugly head, even in America.  Same old mythologies about the Jewish people are finding a new audience, especially as people seem to not be able to differentiate between fact and fiction...Hollywood and history. Here we go again I suppose.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
.
Anonymous More than 1 year ago
Hey copper. Nice to meet you