Essentials of Faith: Judaism

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Essentials of Faith: Judaism (24:00)
Item# 36428

A shared heritage, a spiritual belief system, a set of rules for living—these are all aspects of Judaism, but the order in which they are emphasized varies greatly within the faith. This program features opinions from four articulate and sometimes controversial adherents to the Jewish religion who share their views on differences and similarities within Judaism. Highlighting the impact of the Holocaust and contrasts between the Sephardi and Ashkenazi traditions, the program participants include Rabbi and Baroness Julia Neuberger, Rabbi Barry Marcus of the Central London Synagogue, performer Uri Geller, and Jewish Museum education director Susanna Alexander. (24 minutes)

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Segments in this Video - (10)

1. Jews Memorialize a Nazi Concentration Camp (02:39)
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The Jewish people trace their history back thousands of years to the days of Abraham and Moses. That history includes years of exile and persecution, including the horrors of the 20th century Holocaust that took place in Nazi death camps.

2. The Establishment of Israel (01:34)

Within three years of Adolf Hitler's death, the state of Israel was established. Jews scattered across the world, each with unique histories, once again had a homeland.

3. The Different Worlds of Western and Eastern Jews (02:02)

London's Jewish Museum includes exhibits from western and eastern Jewish traditions. A sampling of the museum's artifacts illustrates the diversity which exists within Judaism.

4. The Torah (02:48)

Judaism is based on the books of the Torah. Jews agree that the Torah is divinely inspired, but it is interpreted differently by different groups of Jews.

5. The Sabbath (02:27)

Nearly all Jews observe the weekly Sabbath as a special family day. The Sabbath is a day to withdraw from the routines and worries of the rest of the week; various groups of Jews follow different laws and traditions regarding the Sabbath.

6. Jewish Celebrations, Traditions, and Identity (01:44)

Jews are united by their traditional festivals and celebrations. Performer Uri Geller describes the meaning of Jewish tradition in relation to his marriage and in relation to his identity as a Jew.

7. Jewish Thought, Beliefs, and Behavior (03:26)

Jews believe the soul is eternal; this belief influences how individuals behave in this world. Most Jews pay much more attention to the realities of this world than to thoughts of an afterlife.

8. Born Jewish (01:48)

Modern Jews do not proselytize; most Jews are born as Jews. Converting to Judaism is very difficult.

9. Spiritual and Political Connections to Israel (01:07)

Establishment of the modern state of Israel has given Jews a homeland. Most Jews across the world feel a spiritual connection to Israel, but at the same time many are critical of Israel's political activities.

10. The Essence of Judaism (02:25)

Judaism is described as a way of life; conservative and liberal Jews interpret and observe traditional Jewish laws in their own ways. Several Jews describe their interpretations of the essentials of Judaism.

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