In March 2005, Valley Beth Shalom in Encino, CA, through its Harold M. Schulweis Institute, invited Rabbi Schulweis and four other preeminent Jewish thinkers to join in reflective teaching and dialogue. Rabbis David Ellenson, Yitz Greenberg, David Hartman, Harold Kushner, and Rabbi Schulweis shared their thinking on the changes that they have seen in Judaism during their lifetimes and their prognostications for the coming generations of Jews. These discussions have now been edited by Rabbi Feinstein, and include thinking about issues such as universalism vs. particularism, the nature of religious pluralism, the meaning of the Holocaust and the State of Israel, relationship with God today and more. The volume is concise and very readable, while addressing deep questions. In addition, some of the writings of the thinkers who are featured in this book are excerpted on the website of the Schulweis Institute, further clarifying the views of these important thinkers. What this reviewer would hope for is a follow up volume that would broaden the discussion to include women’s voices (as noted by Paula Hyman in her introduction) as well as voices of the Gen- Y leaders, modern leaders raised during the 90’s and early 21st century, who will be carrying their leadership roles into the very future on which this volume reflects.
Rabbi Arnold D. Samlan is a Jewish educator and rabbi living in Miami, Florida. He serves as executive director of the Orloff Central Agency for Jewish Education of Broward County.