Wednesday, September 19, 2012

Religion and State in Israel - September 19, 2012

Religion and State in Israel

If you are reading in email or RSS feed, please click here to read ONLINE
Editor – Joel Katz
Religion and State in Israel is not affiliated with any organization or movement.

Asked whether it would be better for a secular Jew who happened to be away from home on Rosh Hashana to pray with a Reform congregation or by himself in a hotel, Chief Rabbi Amar said it would be preferable to pray by himself.
“More than this, it's preferable not to pray at all than to pray with them [a Reform congregation].

Tzohar: “It would be better if the chief rabbi would deal with the actual issues, such as the alarming figures published by the Central Bureau for Statistics which show that a third of secular couples prefer to get married in civil ceremonies [abroad]; converts who are belittled and abused by the institution which he heads; and in general the fact that a large part of Israeli society want Judaism and tradition, but is disgusted by that same Judaism when it comes to them through the offices of the Chief Rabbinate.”

·         85%: Provide freedom of religion & freedom of conscience to all citizens
·         83%: End Haredi military exemptions
·        78%: Reduce funding of yeshivot, large families to encourage Haredi men to join labor market
·         75%: Haredi educational institutions must be forced to teach core subjects
·         71%: Secular-Haredi tensions: most difficult conflict in Israeli society
·         63%: Provide public transportation on Shabbat
·         64%: Orthodox monopoly on conversions must be broken
·         64%: Gender-discrimination in public domain should be a criminal offense
·         63%: Impose economic sanctions on yeshiva students who won't enlist

By Irit Rosenblum
The marriage duration criterion clearly benefits Haredim. The figures speak for themselves as, according to a report in Globes, 93 percent of ultra-Orthodox aged 25-29 are married, compared with 47 percent of the overall Jewish population.
By the time the typical secular Jewish couple marries, the average ultra-Orthodox couple has been married for six years and has three or more children, decisively tilting the eligibility calculation in their favor.
Ultra-Orthodox families will always benefit in this system, since 62.4 percent of them have three or more children, compared with 36.8 percent of all Jewish families.

By Rabbi Eric Yoffie
Yom Kippur is a national holiday in Israel; government officers are closed and certain public activities are appropriately limited.
But the renting of bicycles in Tel Aviv is organized so as to be a private activity, no different than buying a drink from a beverage machine or renting a video from an automatic video dispenser. There is no justification and no excuse for the government to interfere in any way—yes, even on Yom Kippur.

By Arie Hasit

A poem by Abby Caplin

By Ahmadiel Ben Yehuda

By Shlomo Zuckier
In the absence of clear precedent, how have halakhic decisors proceeded? The approach taken is shaped by the decisor’s understanding of larger questions of how Jewish law works.
The Israeli Chief Rabbinate, following a Religious Zionist approach that seeks a state based on a halakhah applicable to real life and sees the need for a sufficient supply of organs in Israel, has been fairly accepting of the brain death standard; Religious Zionist Rabbis Avraham Shapira, Mordechai Eliyahu, and Shaul Yisraeli have supported it.  
The most vocal opponents of the brain death standard are Haredi, including Rabbis Eliezer Waldenberg and Shmuel Wozner.

Just one day after getting married, Allan Katz and Leora Stroh of New Jersey board plane to Israel as new immigrants

This is Israel’s first WBC qualifier. The team is mainly comprised of American-born Jewish players who are allowed to compete because they can claim Israeli citizenship under the Law of Return. Three of the team’s 28 players were born in Israel—Shlomo Lipetz, Alon Leichman and Dan Rothem—and 10 are from the Los Angeles area.

By Sefi Rachlevsky

By Josh Hasten

Editor – Joel Katz
Religion and State in Israel is not affiliated with any organization or movement.
All rights reserved. 

Tuesday, September 11, 2012

Religion and State in Israel - September 10, 2012

Religion and State in Israel

Editor – Joel Katz
Religion and State in Israel is not affiliated with any organization or movement.

By Rabbi Seth Farber
What’s at stake here is not simply the rights of a number of single women. Who holds the power at the mikve is emblematic of who controls Jewish life in Israel. The time has come for the state to allow people to live full Jewish lives and not to put up obstacles in their way.

High Court judges require religious services minister, chief rabbi to explain why women visiting ritual bath are asked personal questions about their marital status

Interview with Tzohar’s Rabbi David Stav

Tzohar rabbi says Chief Rabbinate failed in its duty to bring secular, religious Jews closer together

By Rabbi Yisrael Rosen, Dean of the Zomet Institute 

Hiddush poster

By Anat Hoffman
One day, riding home from school on a public bus, Ariella took a seat in the front of the bus. A few ultra-Orthodox men also boarded the bus and stood next to her.
Then the bus driver asked her to move from her seat in the front to the back of the bus where she had to stand for the duration of her journey.
Seeing the sign posted on the bus saying that passengers could sit wherever they want, Ariella was outraged. She decided to fight for her rights.

The shrinking stigma (premium content article)
Dov Lipman was catapulted to national prominence on the back of Beit Shemesh's sectarian violence. Now he has started a new political party to unify the disparate ethnic ... The violence in Beit Shemesh was quickly seized upon by the media ... Beit Shemesh comprises several ethnic and religious groups
In 2011, the entire world descended on Beit Shemesh as a drama played out on the border between two neighborhoods, one populated by the

By Elana Sztokman
Interview with Deb Houben, Women of the Wall

By Rabbi Nardy Grun

The Tal Law, which granted yeshiva students exemption from military service,expired over a month ago, but army and political figures don't seem to be in any...

By Merav Michaeli
What could have been an amazing opportunity to reorganize Israeli society and reduce its internal tensions remains a ticking bomb of the type from which not even America can save us.

By Shani Boianjiu
As a female soldier, the so-called burden equality issue has a flip side: It would mean having to accept the burden of serving alongside thousands of individuals who see me as less than equal. For them, I could never be a soldier first; I would always be a woman, whose actions may spell danger to their most deeply held beliefs.

How exemption from conscription for ultra-Orthodox Jews is exposing Israel's faultlines.

Shorashim says difficulties in proving Jewishness, failure to convert Soviet Israelis of Jewish descent threatens Israel.

When visiting holy sites or religious neighborhoods, ensure you blend in and avoid causing offense by wearing suitable attire.

Lipman vs the mayor (Premium content article)
Dov Lipman was catapulted to national prominence on the back of Beit Shemesh’s sectarian violence. Now he has started a new political party to unify the disparate ethnic groups in the city.

In the first of a three part series, Judy Maltz checks in on alumni of Young Judaea, America's oldest Zionist youth movement, which has proven to be a breeding ground for major Israeli movers and shakers.

Nochi Dankner and Rabbi Yaakov Ifergan ("The X-ray rabbi")

Hundreds of worshippers flock to famous rabbi's tomb in Bulgaria. Their leader, Rabbi Yoshiyahu Pinto, compares Jewish victory over Persia in Book of Esther to current threats faced by Israel

Book Reveiw: The Political Philosophy of Zionism: Trading Jewish Words for a Hebraic Land, by Eyal Chowers. Cambridge University Press
A political scientist examines the ways the Zionist project looked at language and time. Is there something inherent in Hebrew that made it unsuitable for building a state?

Editor – Joel Katz
Religion and State in Israel is not affiliated with any organization or movement.
All rights reserved.