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Why Be Jewish?: Knowledge and Inspiration for Jews of Today Paperback – October 1, 2011
"Rebound" by Kwame Alexander
Don't miss best-selling author Kwame Alexander's "Rebound," a new companion novel to his Newbery Award-winner, "The Crossover,"" illustrated with striking graphic novel panels. Pre-order today
An increasing number of people regard being Jewish as a lifestyle choice rather than an unchangeable fact.Jewish identity no longer survives automatically. To stay Jewish today, each of us needs to find our own reasons why our heritage is important, inspirational, and relevant to our lives. Bestselling author Doron Kornbluth travels to over 50 cities a year to speak about Jewish identity. "Why Be Jewish" is touching, thought provoking, meaningful and funny. See which perspectives appeal most to you, and gain clarity and confidence in why you're Jewish.
Author interviews, book reviews, editors picks, and more. Read it now
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Highly recommended for all jews, young and old, religious and secular.
In "Chain of Tradition," he gives the traditional chain of tradition of the Torah from Moses to his father to him. In "The Dalai Lama," he tells the tale of an irreligious Jew who is searching for meaning, spends four years in India, including two in the camp of the Dalai Lama. He approaches the Dalai Lama only at the end of the four years with a question. The answer he receives makes him into a better Jew. "May God Bless You, Eric Jones," is a heart-warming story of a boy whose family treated his Christian friend properly and how his friend and his friend's family treated him during a family Christmas meal. "Love, Jewish Style" is a tale of a religious male who marries a non-observant woman and the affect Judaism had on the wife. "Dear Dairy," to cite a final example, is about the difficulties that a non-observant mother had in explaining to her son why Jews do not observe Christian holidays and believe in the divinity of Jesus.
Kornbluth includes a chapter containing Jewish jokes. He concludes his book with three appendices. One points out that while Jews currently make up only 0.21 percent of the world's population, their contribution to the world is "an incredible achievement and without any historic parallel." For example, there were 49 Jews out of 189 Nobel Prize Winners in medicine, 27 out of 150 in chemistry, 23 out of 61 in economics, 44 out of 176 in physics, 12 out of 104 in literature, and 9 out of 95 in world peace.
I especially enjoyed passages quoted from Martin Luther King, Whitman, Tolstoy to illustrate various aspects of what it is to be a good Jew and a decent human being.Nonetheless the book is in my feeling not focused enough. And it ignores many sides of Jewishness which I believe are important.