The New Jewish Baby Book: Names, Ceremonies and Customs: A Guide for Today's Families

Anita Diamant, Author
Anita Diamant, Author Jewish Lights Publishing $18.95 (328p) ISBN 978-1-879045-28-6
Reviewed on: 11/01/1993
Release date: 11/01/1993
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While most of the conversation preceding the birth of a baby these days is focused on such physical things as diets and breathing exercises, the almost universal reaction by, and concern of, parents themselves is a sense of wonderment and awe. In this sometimes very parochial book, the author addresses the human need to plan for the spiritual aspects of childbirth. Diamant offers precise guidelines for celebrating initial and fundamental rites of passage. She devotes much space to Jewish names, both biblical and cultural in origin, and explains the religious traditions and/or significance involved in each. Of even greater import to Diamant, however, is the ceremony of the circumcision. Contrary to a belief widely held in recent times, she stresses, circumcision has no basis in health practices. It is, rather, a sanctification of the ancient convenant God made with Abraham. As a reflection of our ceremonies for girls, adoption and interfaith families. (Mar.)
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