Leiser Joseph - American Judaism

Author : Leiser Joseph
Title : American Judaism The religion and religious institutions of the jewish people in the United States A historical survey
Year : 1925

Link download : Leiser_Joseph_-_American_Judaism.zip

The Jewish people of America are developing a group consciousness. They are beginning to envisage themselves as American Jews. Many are longing for the speedy advent of that day when ali distinctions between the varions geographical classes of European and Asiatic Jewrles that migrated here, will disappear and such terms as orthodox and reform, wholly abandoned. In their stead, it is anticipated that the more acceptable designation, American Jews, will be used when referring to them as a religions people. Now, indeed, is the accepted time for the adoption of that designation as substitute for the previous labels wherewith the varions factions of Jewry on this continent were wont to be classified: orthodox, conservative, reform. Zionistic, nationalistic and atheistic. For this reason, a survey of American Judaism bas been essayed, as an organic unit, possessed with democratie potentialities. This is no vagrant phantasm but is becoming more articulate yearly. There is a weil directed and definite tendency to ignore previons differences of interpretation which heretofore divided the bouse of Jacob, in order to fos ter a more periect union of the various Jewish sects in America. A greater uniformity is desired to the end that more unity may be obtained. But uniformity and unity are two different things. An increasing deliniteness of purpose is likely to animate ali the Jewish inhabitants of these United States. The need of coercing the varions groups into a strait-jacket of conformity, either of doctrine or construction, is not so imminent. Coniormity will come to pass by the process of evolution inherent in the Jewish spirit, since at its core Judaism, however practiced, is essentially identical. The ambition of the following chapters is to outline in a measure the content of this American J udaism. These pages intend to afford a plausible statement of that aspect of the Jewish religion come to consciousness in this country now with more distinctiveness than elsewhere -in fact with more uniqueness and more responsive to the contacts and situations of democracy than in any other country. ...

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