David Moss: I call my question-based conceptual map “The Multi-Dimensional Jew.” Indeed, we are all multidimensional Jews. We all live in a world of questions. We all live within reach of a precious tradition that has grappled with these questions for millennia.
David Wolpe: What is above us? More than we can imagine. What is beside us? The selfsame product of stardust alchemically combined into a thinking, feeling, loving, erring, and uncertain being.
Susan Silverman: What is ahead of us? The paths we took didn’t follow a north star of destiny; they created a reality we called destiny.
B. Elka Abrahamson: Who among us has not asked, “Where am I in the text? What are the letters trying to say to me? Why am I so incapable of understanding this ancient wisdom?”
Yakir Englander The phrase, “Know from whence you came,” compels me and many other Jews to stand at attention. The words evoke a responsibility for cultural gardens deep in my being, planted eons before my parents conceived me, at that distant moment when the divine decision was made determining in which generation my soul would
Yair Sheleg: Israeli law, as in any Western concept, puts at its center the idea of human equality — certain basic rights of equality — and therefore “the discourse of rights.” Jewish law, or halakhah, on the other hand, puts at its center the idea of sanctity, and thus the obligations imposed on human beings.
Everyone must have two pockets. In the right pocket are to be the words: “For my sake was the world created.” (Mishnah Sanhedrin 4:5) And in the left: “I am but dust and ashes.” (Genesis 18:27) — attributed to Rabbi Simcha Bunim of Przysucha, in Martin Buber’s Tales of the Hasidim This saying depicts two
1. Questions are integral to Jewish life, belief, and practice. What are the questions you ask yourself? What questions do you ask your children and family? What questions do you ask your rabbis and teachers?
2. How do we educate for a multidimensional Jewish experience? How might an education for the “whole person,” not just the “Jewish” part of who we are, change the educational experience and our understanding of Judaism?
3. How does the question “Whom do I face?” inform your own Judaism? How do each of the six questions inform your sense of self as a Jew? How do the individual questions play off of and interface with one another?
4. How are the essential Jewish sensibilities, ethics, ethos, practices, and beliefs that inform our lives connected to one another?
Beth Cousens In 1967, in the essay “The Good Jew in Lakeville,” the sociologists of American Jewry Marshall Sklare and Joseph Greenblum published a scale, a list of Jewish behaviors, that they used to discern what was or was not essential to “good” Jewishness. Kashrut, Israel, and synagogue membership each made the list, as did