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Category:Religious Zionist Thought and the State of Israel
Title:Israel as a Religious Reality
Author: Chaim I. Waxman
Publisher or Source:Jason Aronson, 1994
Synopsis: The creation of the State of Israel has dramatically affected the status and self-identity of Jews around the world. For religious Jews, Israel has a special dimension as a religious reality. Israel is not simply a secular, sociopolitical entity that is important because it is a Jewish state. It is also the land promised to the Jewish people by God in the Torah itself. The authors of the essays in Israel as a Religious Reality perceive the State of Israel as having halakhic significance for all of Judaism and Jewry. These leading thinkers from the disciplines of halakhah, Israeli law, the social sciences, and philosophy consider such issues as the mitzvah of making aliyah - moving to Israel - and the prohibition against leaving the Holy Land; how religious Zionists face up theologically to living in Galut - the Diaspora; for observant Jewry, the advantages and disadvantages of a central rabbinic authority; the halakhic status and authority of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel; and the extent to which Orthodox Jews view their religious realities differently, depending on whether they live in Israel or in the Diaspora. According to the editor, Dr. Chaim Waxman, "The conference papers upon which the essays in this volume are based inspired much thought and valuable discussion. It is hoped that in their revised form, for this volume, they will reach an even wider audience and help stimulate new religious Zionist thought and action in the American Orthodox community as well as those worldwide." The contributors to this volume were participants in the Orthodox Forum, an annual gathering of scholars who meet to consider major issues of concern to the Jewish community.
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