For many Jews and others, the official announcement by the Israeli Government that it would be recognizing and supporting Reform Jewish and Conservative Jewish rabbis and congregations is good news.
As I've written many times before, I don't go for all these officials versions of Judaism. I don't even subscribe to the label "Orthodox Judaism." I'm just a Jew who follows the Torah as best as I can.
Orthodox Judaism is an American term, a reaction to the officially changed version of Jewish practice labeled Reform Judaism and Conservative Judaism. If I'm not mistaken, Reconstructionist Judaism came after the Orthodox label.
By codifying and naming their abridged versions of Judaism, the various founders (well-meaning no doubt) of Conservative, Reform, Reconstructionist and Liberal (as it is called in some countries) Judaisms have separated themselves from standard, historic (small "s") traditional (small "t") Judaism, the Judaism that has endured thousands of years.
Judaism is a very complex religion. Not only are there 613 mitzvot, Torah-based commandments, there are many other required laws and serious traditions. Nobody can keep/follow every single one of them. Some aren't relevant for today and some are gender based. There's nothing wrong with gender based laws. Men and women are different. It's a basic fact of life. Just as female and male physiologies aren't the same, our ways to worship G-d shouldn't be the same. It's childish and naive to think we can ignore these basic facts. That may be difficult for some people to accept.
Even in what appears to most as the most Torah-observant time in the Bible we can read of many Jews who sinned or ignored G-d's Commandments. That's human nature. And I guess it's also human nature for some people to try to rationalize away their lack of observance by changing the rules.
Most of us have seen children "cheat" at games by claiming that the game rules permit what they are doing.
In a sense that's the rationale, the history of those other Judaisms. They are attempts to change the rules, commandments of Judaism to suit their observance.
Judaism has existed and slowly evolved over thousands of years, but our basic belief in G-d and the importance of following the Torah hasn't changed. We've lost many Jews to assimilation and other religions, life-styles, philosophies over the millennia.
What we do, observe etc are between us and G-d. The final accounting is after death.
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