#15 in Jewish history books

Reddit reviews on How To Run a Traditional Jewish Household

Sentiment score: 1
Reddit mentions: 1

We found 1 Reddit mentions of How To Run a Traditional Jewish Household. Here are the top ones.

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Found 1 comment on How To Run a Traditional Jewish Household:

u/honmamichin · 6 pointsr/Judaism

As a person who converted through the Reform movement, I highly suggest that you take a holistic approach to your initial study of Judaism. Getting a better idea of where other movements are coming from will not only give you a better grounding in Judaism as a whole, but it will foster understanding between movements and also put you in a better position to decide which movement works best for you.

Personally, even though I converted Reform, I don't actually identify strongly as a Reform Jew, because it's a bit too free form for me (in particular, I became very frustrated when the response to any question I had about observance essentially boiled down to 'do whatever makes you feel good'). That said, like you, I don't identify completely with the theology or some of the practices of Orthodoxy (separation of men and women being one of them), so I wouldn't make a good Orthodox Jew even though I'm more observant than, oh, 90% of Reform Jews.

Take the advice of other people in this thread and try out several different synagogues and Jewish events in your area, if possible. And read a lot on Judaism from different perspectives. Even if you strongly identify with the Reform movement (which is totally fine--I am not knocking the movement, it just isn't 100% for me), it will still be helpful to understand other levels of observance.

Some books I suggest you check out:

  • Basic Judaism by Milton Steinberg -- This book gives a brief and easy-to-read overview of the basics of both traditional (Orthodox) and liberal Judaism. VERY good place to start your studies.
  • Choosing a Jewish Life by Anita Diamant is a good overview of the conversion process and some of the issues coverts face. Been a while since I read this, but it's definitely not from an Orthodox perspective--I think it strives to be more neutral as far as denomination goes.
  • I also highly recommend To Pray as a Jew by Hayim Halevy Donin. This is an introduction to the synagogue service and its prayers. Very informative book. It is written from an Orthodox perspective, and will be easier to follow once you are further along in your studies, I think, but it's a wonderful resource.

    Particularly because you mentioned that you are a feminist, I thought you might also be interested in:

  • How to run a Traditional Jewish Household by Blu Greenberg. This book is written from a Modern Orthodox perspective by a well-known Orthodox feminist. It gives a lot of background and information about Orthodox customs that aren't as well-known to more liberal Jews (like the concept of an eruv, for example). Though I don't identify as an Orthodox Jew myself, I found this book fascinating and it really helped me solidify my own practice and feelings about traditional Judaism.
  • Life on the Fringes: A Feminist Journey Toward Traditional Rabbinic Ordination by Haviva Ner-David is an account of Ner-David's journey to becoming one of the first women granted the equivalent of Orthodox semicha (ordination) in Israel. I found it very eye-opening. It is definitely possible to be a feminist and be traditional. I don't agree with everything she says/does, but this is another great book to give you a perspective on how and why Orthodox Jews do things the way they do.

    Welcome to the path of Jewish study. If you ever have any other specific questions about converting Reform or need support in your studies or your journey, please feel free to PM me any time.