European Judaism

Articles from Vol. 39, No. 2, Autumn

A Response to Arthur Green's Paper
'If you wish to know He-who-spoke-and-the-world-came-into-being, learn Aggadah; for through that you will come to know the Holy One blessed be He and cleave to his ways '(Sifre, Ekev) As I listened to this wonderful, humane, revelatory paper it...
A Response to Michael Meyer's Paper
Michael Meyer has, as always, given us an elegant, learned, thoughtprovoking and beautifully delivered presentation. There are certainly qualities of Leo Baeck that remain extremely appealing to us today. Speaking personally, I greatly admire his...
Are There Jewish Answers to Europe's Questions?
It is a great honour for me to be your keynote speaker today, to commemorate the 50th anniversary of Leo Baeck's death and to celebrate the creation of the rabbinical seminar that carries his name. I must tell you that I feel quite at home in your...
Editorial
We celebrate in this edition two closely related events. The fortieth anniversary of this journal is a remarkable landmark, particularly given the short-lived nature of intellectual journals within the British Jewish community. That it is still around...
European Judaism Editorial Vol. 1 No. 1 Summer 1966
Mercifully the destruction of the European Jewish communities was not total, and at the close of the conflict about 20 per cent of the original population remained to face the future. In some countries, such as France, a high proportion of the total...
Faith and Social Action
In the footsteps of Hermann Cohen, 'the idea of humanity in the correlation of the unity of God', Leo Baeck rises out of the experience of the First World War beyond being the Nebenmensch to become the Mitmensch, who lives forever with the Divine Mitleid,...
Forty Years of European Judaism-Thirty Eight Years of Dialogue
The beginnings Writing on the tenth anniversary of this journal in 1976, David Goldberg criticised the magazine's relationship with 'alienated intellectuals'--a remark which provoked a number of protests published in the following issue. In its...
Forty Years of 'Judaism and Psychotherapy': An Overview
Some months after my barmitzvah, a copy of a new Jewish journal fell into my hands. For a child brought up in the suburbs of Manchester, where the Jewish Chronicle and the local Jewish Telegraph were our only regular Jewish fodder, European Judaism...
God!
A classical tool of theology is the via negativa, a way of learning religious truth by asking what it is that we can not assert about God. Here I wish to apply this method to the impossibility of the task before us: we cannot summarise the entire history...
'Greater Judaism': The Relationship between Judaism and Social Action
I'm Benji. I work full time for RSY-Netzer, the youth wing of the Reform movement, and I'm involved in Tzedek, a Jewish charity that is committed to helping non-Jews. It provides grants and volunteers to small-scale sustainable projects across the...
Judaism and Campaigning for Social Justice
What was it that led me to spending the last twenty years of my life committed to and passionate about the cause of social justice? Obviously there was interplay between a number of factors, but my religion has played a major part. My family were originally...
Louis Jacobs: Our Rabbi and Teacher
When the great, righteous man of his generation leaves his place, its beauty and radiance are gone. The shock and sorrow of Rabbi Jacobs's passing bring with them the great sadness of the end of an era. As my colleague Rabbi Chaim Weiner said,...
Meditations on Conversations
Is forty years a long or short time? Forty years wandering in the Wilderness; forty years of European Judaism! For a magazine, a feat and achievement indeed! For each of us, as individuals, forty years represents a substantial portion of our lives--and...
Opening Address
Dear Colleague, And you shall hallow the 50th year. You shall proclaim release throughout the land for all its inhabitants. It shall be a jubilee for you; each of you shall return to his holding and each of you shall return to his family (Leviticus...
Preparing Rabbis for the Future
The thesis I would submit to you this morning may be somewhat surprising: it is that the task of the rabbinic programme at Leo Baeck College is impossible. We have a five-year programme of study. What do we want to accomplish with our students by the...
Rabbi Dr Baeck's Legacy to Progressive Judaism (1)
On the hundredth anniversary of Rabbi Leo Baeck's birth, in the year 1973, Rabbi Joachim Prinz of Livingston, New Jersey, who had been his colleague in Berlin, gave a two-part radio interview devoted to his fellow rabbi. Always provocative, Prinz began...
Rabbi Dr Maybaum and Rabbi Dr Baeck: A Footnote to Professor David Ellenson's Lecture
I came down from university in the summer of 1968 and, three months later, walked into 33 Seymour Place for my first day at the Leo Baeck College. The culture shock--or perhaps I should say kulturschock--was the most profound that I have ever experienced....
Rabbi Leo Baeck: A Personal Appraisal and Appreciation
In This People Israel, Leo Baeck observed that Jewish vision 'looks backward and forward simultaneously', that 'nothing exists solely for itself. Everything has its predecessor and its successor, its ancestry and its direction.' Judaism 'only knows...
Reclaiming Social Activism
Few invitations have given me as much pleasure as this one. This afternoon I would like to do three things. First, to say something about how I became involved with social issues; second, to raise some questions; and third, I would like to suggest...
The Early Years of European Judaism
Memory is a traitor. Forty years is a short time in human history, but the attempt to remember exactly what happened in the past is fraught with problems. The clearest incidents are often the most trivial. What we really want to remember remains obscure....
The Eucalyptus Tree and the Talmud: The Return to a Jewish Literary Heritage as a Post-Zionist Jewish Identity
She was a young American Jewish girl, probably in her gap year. I was a pre-barmitzvah Israeli boy; don't worry, we were only having a conversation. I cannot remember how we met, and what began our conversation. I can only recall one misunderstanding....
The Future of Rabbinic Training
When thinking through this session we found ourselves in something of a dilemma. It should allow for a summing up of the experience of the conference itself, but at the same time we wanted to prepare in advance some thoughts on the theme of the future...
The Rabbi and the Portable Minyan
These words are predicated on the controversial notion that Tony Bayfield may not always be right. Interviewed in this week's Jewish Chronicle, he is reported as saying: I believe there has been a shift in the role of rabbis since my training....
To Be European or Not, That Is My Question
European Judaism celebrates its 40th year of existence, but 'European Judaism' still does not exist, and it is doubtful whether it ever will. There are Anglo-Jewry, French Jewry, Jews in Germany (NB, not deutsches Judentum), Dutch and Italian Jewry,...