Mean­ing & Mit­vah: Dai­ly Prac­tices for Reclaim­ing Judaism Through Prayer, God, Torah, Hebrew,Mitzvot and Peoplehood

  • Review
By – October 18, 2011
As the title sug­gests, there are numer­ous paths to spir­i­tu­al aware­ness and liv­ing a more mean­ing­ful Jew­ish life. With this insight­ful, cre­ative, inter­ac­tive guide­book, Mil­gram lights up more paths to spir­i­tu­al­i­ty than you can count, then hands you the torch. There are six chap­ters: Find­ing Mean­ing in Jew­ish Prayer, Reclaim­ing God with Integri­ty, Tak­ing Torah Per­son­al­ly, Hebrew is a Spir­i­tu­al Prac­tice, Liv­ing a Mitz­vah- Cen­tered Life, and The Pos­i­tive Pow­er of Peo­ple­hood. Each offers recipes” designed to put Milgram’s sug­ges­tions into action. These include med­i­ta­tion tech­niques, tips to enhance your under­stand­ing and appre­ci­a­tion of Hebrew, as well as Jew­ish litur­gy and songs; and chal­lenges to find new ways to per­form mitzvot. The only weak­ness is her propen­si­ty to switch top­ics abrupt­ly (a pas­sage on intro­duc­ing breast self-exams to women in the for­mer Sovi­et republics is fol­lowed by a dis­cus­sion of the kip­pah, for exam­ple). Pep­pered with moti­va­tion­al anec­dotes and dia­logues, the book is oth­er­wise well-orga­nized and acces­si­ble to read­ers of all Jew­ish edu­ca­tion­al back­grounds and lev­els of obser­vance. Appen­dix (“Mitz­vah Cards,” includ­ing brief descrip­tions of spe­cif­ic mitzvot), fur­ther read­ing, gloss., index.
Robin K. Levin­son is an award-win­ning jour­nal­ist and author of a dozen books, includ­ing the Gali Girls series of Jew­ish his­tor­i­cal fic­tion for chil­dren. She cur­rent­ly works as an assess­ment spe­cial­ist for a glob­al edu­ca­tion­al test­ing orga­ni­za­tion. She lives in Hamil­ton, NJ.

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