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soc.culture.jewish FAQ: Reform Judaism (10/12)
Section - Question 18.3.4: Reform's Position On...What is unacceptable practice?

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                                  Answer:
   
   As one might imagine, the emphasis on freedom and autonomy in Reform
   Judaism could lead one to an "anything goes" position. However,
   anything doesn't go. The Reform Responsa literature is full of
   examples of unacceptable practice/practices; here are a few:
     * "Current medical fashions are irrelevant in this matter as we
       consider circumcision to be a religious rite, not a health
       measure. Unless ill health or serious medical problems prevent the
       circumcision of a male infant on the eighth day, he should be
       circumcised on that day. If such a child is not circumcised, he
       would nevertheless be considered a Jew [but] it would be incumbant
       upon such an individual to be circumcised later in life."
       [[5]American Reform Responsa #54]
     * "For us in the Jewish community anyone who claims that Jesus is
       their savior is no longer a Jew and is an apostate... Such
       individuals should not be accorded membership in the congregation
       or treated in any way which makes them appear as if they were
       affiliated with the Jewish community..." [[6]Contemporary American
       Reform Responsa, #68]
     * When asked if a Jewish lady could be a bridesmaid at a Christian
       wedding, the answer as "The young lady may attend as a bridesmaid
       but she may not kneel or do anything whicy may be considered as
       participation in a Christian worship service." [[7]Contemporary
       American Reform Responsa, #168]
     * [8]Contemporary American Reform Responsa, #118 implies that
       headstones in a Jewish cemetary must not have Christian symbols.
     * "Mind altering drugs... may not be used by Jews to induce a
       ``heightened sense of religious awareness'' or to seek a mystical
       experience." [[9]Contemporary American Reform Responsa, #74]
       
   However, just because an individual does something unacceptable or
   holds a belief different than the movement's recommendation does not,
   a priori, make them no longer a Reform Jew. As Rabbi Plaut wrote
   "Persons of varying shadings of belief or unbelief, practice or
   non-practice, may belong to UAHC congregations as individuals."

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Top Document: soc.culture.jewish FAQ: Reform Judaism (10/12)
Previous Document: Question 18.3.3: Reform's Position On...What is acceptable practice?
Next Document: Question 18.3.5: Reform's Position On...The necessity of belief in G-d?

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