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Fresh Perspective on Reform Judaism’s Gifts

Robert M. Heller, Chair of the Board of Trustees, Union for Reform Judaism, gets it right! He extols the refreshing perspective of Reform Judaism in its approach to Jewish life and living. Heller writes on the Jpost.com blog:

…That is not today’s world. Old barriers have fallen. When it comes to religion, we can be anything we want, choose any religious identity that fits, or choose to have no religious identity and practice no religion. Choosing to be Jewish today involves an affirmative act, not passive acceptance. The cliché is right: all of us who identify ourselves as Jews, at least all of us willing to live outside ghetto walls, are Jews by choice. …

Why are people in North America and Israel choosing Reform Judaism? …I believe people are choosing Reform Judaism because of attraction, not repulsion or revulsion over the perceived hypocrisy and corruption that flow almost inevitably when religious monopolies are created. They — we — are choosing Reform Judaism because it stands for something and enables us to engage in Jewish prayer, study and action that has meaning and relevance for us in today’s world, not because it is not Orthodox Judaism.

He lists 6 important tenets of Reform Judaism:

  • Proper role of halachah (Jewish law)
  • Egalitarian tenets
  • Inclusionary Approach
  • Pluralistic Outlook
  • Heading the Prophetic Voice
  • Dynamic Lay/Professional Partnerships

Read more.

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