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c Omfortably j Ewish

c Omfortably j Ewish

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Published by Gar2tim215

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Published by: Gar2tim215 on Jan 06, 2010
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01/06/2010

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C
ONTENTS
Preface
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . v 
 Acknowledgments
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . vii
PART one:
Introduction. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1On the joys of playing guitar badly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1Is this a book for me? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 Why should I care? Why it is good to be Jewish . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4But my mom’s not Jewish. How can I be?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6Leave your guilt at the door: Nobody’s Jewish enough. . . . . . . . . . 8 What about my non-Jewish relatives?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8How does this book work?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
PART two:
 What Does a Jewish Identity Look Like? . . . . . . . . 11 Who am I?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11But I don’t feel very Jewish. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 What does building a Jewish identity look like?. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13Culture versus faith . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14Having a distinctive cultural identity within amulticultural world . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
C
OMFORTABLY 
J
EWISH
i
 
PART three:
Experiencing Jewishness in the home. . . . . . . . . 19Playtime . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19Entering the Jewmosphere: Jewish atmosphere in the home . . . . 22Learning to feed your Jewish stomach. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25Oy vey! Fun with Jewish expressions. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26
Common Hebrew and Yiddish expressions 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
Important Jewish terms 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32Shabbat . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 34
PART four:
Experiencing the Jewish World . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39Hey, can I borrow a bagel? The Jewish community as a resource . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39Hooray for bubbes: Learning from the elderly . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42“Couldn’t you have chosen someone else?”Understanding Jewish suffering. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
 Never Forget! The background of an American Jewish concern over anti-Semitism 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47
 A brief history of modern Jewish persecution 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 48 You just MUST go once: Israel . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 51
 A brief history of the land of Israel 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
 Note on understanding the current political situation in Israel 
. . . . . . . 57Defending the fatherless and the widow: Jewish ethics and social action. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58
PART five:
 The Heart of Jewish Life: Celebrating the Holidays. . . 63 The value of celebration. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63But I dont know what I am doing!!! . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64Okay, where do I start? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65Hanukkah. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 65Passover . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 69Purim . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 75
C
OMFORTABLY 
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EWISH
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 The High Holidays . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 77Sukkot . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 81Shavuot . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 84
PART six:
Rites of Passage and Traditions. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 89Bar mitzvah . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 90Coming of age. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 95
Suggested bar mitzvah preparation and activities 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 98
Other activities to prepare for adulthood 
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 100Bris/baby naming . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 102Hey what are we, chopped liver? Affirming non-Jewish parents and relatives . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 105
PART seven:
Closing Thoughts . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 109I didn’t always care about being Jewish: My story . . . . . . . . . . . . 109I only hope I know what I am talking about: Why I wrote the book . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 117
 APPENDIX
: Holiday recipes . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 119
endnotes:
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 129
INDEX
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 131
C
OMFORTABLY 
J
EWISH
iii

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