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  Home > Books > Basic Judaism >

  Judaism for Dummies
Judaism for Dummies
 
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Description
 
Rabbi Ted Falcon Ph.D.

Publisher: Hungry Minds, Inc.

If you want to reconnect with your Jewish heritage, or if you're just curious about the Jewish experience, then this friendly guide is for you. With a dose of warmth and humor, you'll discover key Jewish beliefs and traditions, understand the importance of Jewish history, and learn about Jewish holiday celebrations.

We begin by exploring the different groups within the Jewish community, like Ashkenazi and Sephardic, and denominations, like Orthodox, Reform, and so on. Then we target two of the most important issues in Judaism -- God and Torah -- before discussing the basic practices of Judaism, like the kosher laws and what happens in worship services. Part I ends with a look at the ancient (and really cool) practices of Jewish mysticism (usually called Kabbalah).

In Part II we discuss how Judaism honors and celebrates the major stages of life with rituals, including the bris (circumcision for boys), Bar and Bat Mitzvahs, weddings, and funeral rites.

You can't understand Judaism (or even Western civilization) without knowing something about Jewish history. But that doesn't mean that the history has to be boring! In Part III we delve into the highlights and the low points -- from the Biblical stories to modern day -- focusing on what you need to know and why you need to know it.

Okay, so it's Chanukkah again (or Passover or Sukkot, or whatever) -- how do you "do it right"? In Part IV we explore every major Jewish holiday, from the weekly Shabbat to the week-long Sukkot. If you want to know what, where, when, why, how, or who, this is the place to look.

If you've only got time for a quickie, make sure to put a bookmark at the beginning of Part V. We include a "who's who" of people you should know about, plus answers to common questions about Judaism.

If you're in a heated debate with a Jewish person, you'd better know the differences between "shlemiel" and "shlemazl," and between "tuchis" and "tsuris." Don't worry, we cover all this in the Appendixes, along with a quick easy-in/easy-out guide to prayers and blessings and a calendar of Jewish holidays.

--From the authors

Available in softcover

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