The God Upgrade: Finding Your 21st Century Spirituality in Judaism's 5,000-Year-Old Tradition

Jamie S. Korngold, Author
Jamie S. Korngold. Jewish Lights, $15.99 trade paper (176p) ISBN 978-1-58023-443-6
Reviewed on: 04/11/2011
Release date: 03/01/2011
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Korngold, a Reform rabbi who as "Adventure Rabbi" leads outdoor hikes and retreats designed to recreate the spiritual connection between nature and Judaism, takes her 2008 book God in the Wilderness a step further. She presents brief updates of the concept of God as advanced by Maimonides, Spinoza, Buber, Heschel, and Kushner before offering her own understanding of God. She asserts that "upgrades" are in keeping with Jewish tradition and rejects the conception of a God that keeps score of human deeds and hands out punishments or rewards accordingly. Instead, she argues for modernizing the contemporary notion of God so that it becomes compatible with both science and Judaism. This involves maintaining ancient rituals as "gems" that tie today's Jews to ancestors and to each other. Traditions and heritage linked to contemporary understanding will produce a fresh view of God that can "inspire you, bring you comfort, and fill your life with peace." While Korngold primarily addresses Jews, her powerful message can resonate with people of all faiths as they struggle to reconcile science and religion. (May)
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